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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
151 Avicii0001Avicii 1 1
54.0
 
54 54 18.0 0 0 1 0 0
152 Bad English0001Bad English 1 2
33.0
 
42 24 17.0 0 1 1 0 0
153 Band Perry0001The Band Perry 2 2
40.5
 
42 39 23.0 0 1 1 0 0
154 Bangles0001The Bangles 1 1
46.0
 
46 46 18.0 0 0 1 0 0
155 Bareilles, Sara0001Sara Bareilles 2 2
39.0
 
54 24 21.0 0 1 1 0 0
156 Barry, Len0001Len Barry 1 1
45.0
 
45 45 25.0 0 0 1 0 0
157 Benet, Eric0001Eric Benét 1 1
45.0
 
45 45 24.0 0 0 1 0 0
158 Bennett, Tony0001Tony Bennett 3 3
31.0
 
57 7 17.7 1 1 1 0 0
159 Bishop, Stephen0001Stephen Bishop 1 1
51.0
 
51 51 17.0 0 0 1 0 0
160 Black Crowes0001The Black Crowes 3 5
49.4
 
66 31 19.6 0 2 1 2 0
161 Blind Pilot0001Blind Pilot 1 1
51.0
 
51 51 17.0 0 0 1 0 0
162 Blondie0001Blondie 1 3
39.3
 
60 11 21.3 1 0 1 1 0
163 Bon Jovi0001Bon Jovi 7 10
63.2
 
86 15 17.3 1 1 1 4 3
164 Bonoff, Karla0001Karla Bonoff 1 1
41.0
 
41 41 20.0 0 0 1 0 0
165 Boone, Debbie0001Debbie Boone 1 1
54.0
 
54 54 19.0 0 0 1 0 0
166 Box Tops0001The Box Tops 1 3
46.0
 
66 27 18.3 0 1 1 1 0
167 Brandy0001Brandy 1 1
43.0
 
43 43 16.0 0 0 1 0 0
168 Branigan, Laura0001Laura Branigan 2 9
50.9
 
83 25 18.6 0 4 1 3 1
169 Bryson, Peabo0001Peabo Bryson 1 1
52.0
 
52 52 21.0 0 0 1 0 0
170 Buckley, Jeff0001Jeff Buckley 1 3
70.3
 
86 54 23.7 0 0 1 1 1
171 Campbell, Tevin0001Tevin Campbell 1 1
57.0
 
57 57 23.0 0 0 1 0 0
172 Captain And Tennille0001Captain & Tennille 2 4
56.3
 
76 35 18.8 0 1 1 2 0
173 Cara, Irene0001Irene Cara 2 5
51.2
 
85 19 17.2 1 1 1 1 1
174 Carey, Mariah And Houston, Whitney0001Mariah Carey & Whitney Houston 1 3
62.3
 
70 55 21.3 0 0 1 2 0
175 Carlile, Brandy0001Brandi Carlile 1 1
50.0
 
50 50 20.0 0 0 1 0 0
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