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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
176 Usher0001Usher 3 3
37.3
 
80 5 17.7 1 1 0 0 1
177 Vanilla Fudge0001Vanilla Fudge 1 5
49.6
 
81 6 17.2 1 0 2 1 1
178 Wallis, Shani0001Shani Wallis 1 2
75.5
 
80 71 17.5 0 0 0 1 1
179 Washington, Dinah0001Dinah Washington 1 1
90.0
 
90 90 16.0 0 0 0 0 1
180 Welch, Lenny0001Lenny Welch 1 1
80.0
 
80 80 13.0 0 0 0 0 1
181 West, Kanye0001Kanye West 1 1
87.0
 
87 87 15.0 0 0 0 0 1
182 Wilde, Kim0001Kim Wilde 1 5
49.6
 
81 6 17.2 1 0 2 1 1
183 Abba0001ABBA 1 1
12.0
 
12 12 14.0 1 0 0 0 0
184 Abdul, Paula0001Paula Abdul 1 1
64.0
 
64 64 24.0 0 0 0 1 0
185 Adams, Bryan and Turner, Tina0001Bryan Adams & Tina Turner 1 1
64.0
 
64 64 18.0 0 0 0 1 0
186 Adams, Ryan0001Ryan Adams 2 2
43.5
 
46 41 22.5 0 0 2 0 0
187 Adams, Yolanda0001Yolanda Adams 2 2
24.0
 
46 2 11.0 1 0 1 0 0
188 Aguilera, Christina0001Christina Aguilera 7 10
50.6
 
78 21 18.9 0 2 7 1 0
189 Air Supply0001Air Supply 1 1
54.0
 
54 54 17.0 0 0 1 0 0
190 Aldean, Jason0001Jason Aldean 2 2
36.0
 
38 34 18.5 0 2 0 0 0
191 Aldean, Jason and Clarkson, Kelly0001Jason Aldean & Kelly Clarkson 1 1
43.0
 
43 43 25.0 0 0 1 0 0
192 All 4 One0001All-4-One 1 1
25.0
 
25 25 14.0 0 1 0 0 0
193 Allan, Gary0001Gary Allan 1 1
40.0
 
40 40 25.0 0 0 1 0 0
194 Anastacia0001Anastacia 1 1
19.0
 
19 19 10.0 1 0 0 0 0
195 Anderson, John0001John Anderson 1 1
27.0
 
27 27 18.0 0 1 0 0 0
196 Anthony, Marc0001Marc Anthony 3 3
47.7
 
73 19 17.7 1 0 1 1 0
197 Apple, Fiona0001Fiona Apple 1 1
23.0
 
23 23 20.0 0 1 0 0 0
198 Arie, India0001India.Arie 1 2
71.5
 
75 68 20.5 0 0 0 2 0
199 Art Of Noise And Tom Jones0001Art Of Noise & Tom Jones 1 1
39.0
 
39 39 19.0 0 1 0 0 0
200 Askew, Charlie0001Charlie Askew 1 1
47.0
 
47 47 24.0 0 0 1 0 0
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