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Songs

This section of the WhatNotToSing.com database is so dangerous it ought to come with a warning sticker. There are no shortage of ways to misinterpret the Song data we've compiled. For example, if you happen to have toothpaste for brains, and you looked at the table below, you might reason thusly:

"Hmm...'In A Dream', by Badlands. A 94.0 average, that's good. Only been performed once, for 5-stars. Looks like a pretty sweet choice. I'll try it!"

Thankfully, most contestants this dumb can't find the audition site in the first place, and the judges do a decent job of weeding out the ones that do. But beware, the Songs table provides plenty more rope with which to hang yourself. Here, then, are a few bits of friendly advice from the staff.

  • In all seriousness, do avoid songs that have already been showstoppers; the odds are not in your favor. Note how many songs have provided a 5-star performance (sort the Ratings Tab table by the rightmost column), then note how few have done so for two different contestants. It's difficult enough to be compared to a professional recording artist, but when you invite comparisons to previous excellent Idol moments as well, you're really asking for it.
  • Corollary: steer clear of commercial hit songs by a former Idol, unless your goal is to shout to the world, "Hey, look! I can't sing as well as someone you crowned champion a few years ago!"
  • In a similar vein, avoid songs associated with a previous disastrous performance. If your lifelong dream is to sing Crocodile Rock on the Idol stage, get over it.
  • Keep in mind that each song's numerical rating is of the performances of that song, not of the song itself. Always take the singers into account. The "X-Factor" column in the Extended Data tab is a great way to see whether a song has helped or hurt singers in the long run.

Which brings us to this final tidbit of advice. When faced with a choice between a song that has been performed previously on Idol (even if it wasn't a showstopper or a disaster) and a fresh one, all else being equal, go with the fresh one. We've found a clear downward trend on repeat and reprise performances, particularly in the later seasons.

[back to top] American Idol  Songs


Click on a column header to sort by that column.
# Song / Artist Average Rating #Pf Hi Lo σ 0-19 20-39 40-59 60-79 80-100
901
Sting Me0001Sting Me
82.0
 
1 82 82 14.0 0 0 0 0 1
902
Stone0001The Stone
42.0
 
1 42 42 24.0 0 0 1 0 0
903
Stop Draggin' My Heart Around0001Stop Draggin' My Heart Around
66.5
 
2 70 63 21.0 0 0 0 2 0
904
Storm Warning0001Storm Warning
34.0
 
1 34 34 22.0 0 1 0 0 0
905
Stormy Weather0001Stormy Weather
53.0
 
2 56 50 21.5 0 0 2 0 0
906
Story0001The Story
50.0
 
1 50 50 20.0 0 0 1 0 0
907
Story Of My Life0001Story Of My Life
65.5
 
2 74 57 18.0 0 0 1 1 0
908
Straight Up0001Straight Up
64.0
 
1 64 64 24.0 0 0 0 1 0
909
Streetcorner Symphony0001Streetcorner Symphony
27.0
 
1 27 27 13.0 0 1 0 0 0
910
Stronger0001Stronger
80.0
 
1 80 80 13.0 0 0 0 0 1
911
Stronger What Doesnt Kill You0001Stronger (What Doesn't Kill You)
28.0
 
1 28 28 14.0 0 1 0 0 0
912
Stuff Like That There0001Stuff Like That There
95.0
 
1 95 95 11.0 0 0 0 0 1
913
Stuttering0001Stuttering
79.0
 
1 79 79 18.0 0 0 0 1 0
914
Suddenly I See0001Suddenly I See
41.0
 
1 41 41 18.0 0 0 1 0 0
915
Suds In The Bucket0001Suds In The Bucket
20.0
 
1 20 20 21.0 0 1 0 0 0
916
Sugar Were Goin Down0001Sugar, We're Goin' Down
75.0
 
1 75 75 13.0 0 0 0 1 0
917
Summer Wind0001Summer Wind
58.0
 
1 58 58 17.0 0 0 1 0 0
918
Summertime0001Summertime
From: Porgy & Bess
75.3
 
3 94 62 16.7 0 0 0 2 1
919
Summertime Sadness0001Summertime Sadness
76.0
 
1 76 76 21.0 0 0 0 1 0
920
Sunny0001Sunny
46.0
 
1 46 46 15.0 0 0 1 0 0
921
Superstar0001Superstar
61.3
 
3 81 36 17.7 0 1 0 1 1
922
Superstar0001Superstar
From: Jesus Christ Superstar
71.0
 
1 71 71 19.0 0 0 0 1 0
923
Superstition0001Superstition
49.5
 
6 65 35 20.8 0 3 0 3 0
924
Suspicious Minds0001Suspicious Minds
46.3
 
3 56 38 20.0 0 1 2 0 0
925
Sway0001Sway
57.0
 
1 57 57 17.0 0 0 1 0 0
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