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Artists

If you're looking to dispel some persistent American Idol urban legends, forget about Snopes.com or Mythbusters. This section of the WhatNotToSing.com database is the only place to turn.

Let's start by busting the granddaddy myth of all. "Never sing Whitney Houston", the judges and bloggers bleat repeatedly. Never sing Celine Dion, or Mariah Carey, or Aretha Franklin either. Well, maybe. If you click through to each of those artist pages, you'll find somewhat surprisingly that the better Idols have done OK with them (particularly Aretha.) The divas have been harsh mainly on deluded Semifinalists who mistakenly think they can handle the big girls' material.

So are we suggesting that contestants throw caution to the wind and belt out Saving All My Love For You at every turn? Not hardly. For one thing, we don't want hordes of angry Idol fans, their ears bleeding profusely, massing outside our windows with pitchforks and torches. For another, the naysayers are right — sort of. No matter what popular song you choose, you will inevitably be compared to the original artist. If you can't do Whitney justice (and if you could, chances are you'd have been signed to a record deal eons ago), why go out of your way to advertise this fact to 30 million of your closest friends? But, if you can do a decent Whitney cover, don't let some urban legend stop you.

Two artists who've fared considerably less well on Idol are Brian McKnight and LeAnn Rimes. That duo has combined for exactly one performance of 5-stars or 4-stars thus far, out of 20 rated ones total. We consider this no surprise. Most top amateur singers find it easier to pin back their ears and belt out an over-the-top number than to try to match the complex vocal subtleties of more nuanced artists.

[back to top] American Idol  Artists

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# Artist #Sng #Prf Rating Hi Lo σ 0-19 20-39 40-59 60-79 80-100
201 Williams, Lenny0001Lenny Williams 1 1
78.0
 
78 78 18.0 0 0 0 1 0
202 Baxter, Les0001Les Baxter 1 4
44.0
 
77 5 19.0 1 1 0 2 0
203 Cocker, Joe0001Joe Cocker 3 8
59.9
 
77 27 19.0 0 1 2 5 0
204 Diamond, Neil0001Neil Diamond 10 10
43.1
 
77 10 20.1 2 2 3 3 0
205 Hamilton, Roy0001Roy Hamilton 1 4
44.0
 
77 5 19.0 1 1 0 2 0
206 Hansard, Glen And Marketa Irglova0001Glen Hansard & Marketa Irglova 1 3
73.0
 
77 65 23.3 0 0 0 3 0
207 Hibbler, Al0001Al Hibbler 1 4
44.0
 
77 5 19.0 1 1 0 2 0
208 Kristofferson, Kris0001Kris Kristofferson 1 1
77.0
 
77 77 17.0 0 0 0 1 0
209 Lady Gaga0001Lady Gaga 4 7
59.0
 
77 34 19.7 0 2 1 4 0
210 Lovin Spoonful0001Lovin' Spoonful 1 1
77.0
 
77 77 17.0 0 0 0 1 0
211 Righteous Brothers0001The Righteous Brothers 2 5
38.4
 
77 5 18.0 2 1 0 2 0
212 Rimes, LeAnn0001LeAnn Rimes 9 16
36.9
 
77 5 19.3 1 9 4 2 0
213 Smith, Sammi0001Sammi Smith 1 1
77.0
 
77 77 17.0 0 0 0 1 0
214 Twain, Shania0001Shania Twain 7 9
46.7
 
77 23 22.7 0 1 7 1 0
215 Weather Girls0001The Weather Girls 1 3
45.3
 
77 12 14.3 1 0 1 1 0
216 Womack, Lee Ann0001Lee Ann Womack 1 1
77.0
 
77 77 19.0 0 0 0 1 0
217 Captain And Tennille0001Captain & Tennille 2 4
56.3
 
76 35 18.8 0 1 1 2 0
218 Connick Jr., Harry0001Harry Connick, Jr. 1 1
76.0
 
76 76 18.0 0 0 0 1 0
219 Eminem0001Eminem 1 1
76.0
 
76 76 22.0 0 0 0 1 0
220 Evanescence0001Evanescence 2 3
69.0
 
76 60 22.7 0 0 0 3 0
221 Fantasia0001Fantasia 1 1
76.0
 
76 76 17.0 0 0 0 1 0
222 Frampton, Peter0001Peter Frampton 1 3
59.7
 
76 48 17.7 0 0 2 1 0
223 Gaye, Marvin And Terrell, Tammi0001Marvin Gaye & Tammi Terrell 2 7
54.0
 
76 8 16.1 1 0 3 3 0
224 Gray, Skylar0001Skylar Gray 1 1
76.0
 
76 76 22.0 0 0 0 1 0
225 Jones, Isham And Orchestra0001Isham Jones & His Orchestra 1 1
76.0
 
76 76 18.0 0 0 0 1 0
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