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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
926
Sky Blue Diamond0001Sky Blue Diamond
47.0
 
1 47 47 24.0 0 0 1 0 0
927
Skyfall0001Skyfall
83.0
 
1 83 83 16.0 0 0 0 0 1
928
Skyscraper0001Skyscraper
62.0
 
1 62 62 28.0 0 0 0 1 0
929
Slow Ride0001Slow Ride
88.0
 
1 88 88 15.0 0 0 0 0 1
930
Smoky Mountain Memories0001Smoky Mountain Memories
74.0
 
1 74 74 18.0 0 0 0 1 0
931
So Small0001So Small
86.0
 
1 86 86 21.0 0 0 0 0 1
932
Solitaire0001Solitaire
92.0
 
1 92 92 14.0 0 0 0 0 1
933
Some Kind Of Wonderful0001Some Kind Of Wonderful
40.0
 
1 40 40 19.0 0 0 1 0 0
934
Somebody That I Used To Know0001Somebody That I Used To Know
55.0
 
1 55 55 28.0 0 0 1 0 0
935
Somebody To Love0001Somebody To Love
55.5
 
2 68 43 26.0 0 0 1 1 0
936
Someone Elses Star0001Someone Else's Star
56.0
 
1 56 56 22.0 0 0 1 0 0
937
Someone Like You0001Someone Like You
19.0
 
1 19 19 12.0 1 0 0 0 0
938
Someone Saved My Life Tonight0001Someone Saved My Life Tonight
80.0
 
1 80 80 15.0 0 0 0 0 1
939
Someone To Watch Over Me0001Someone To Watch Over Me
66.0
 
4 87 48 19.8 0 0 2 1 1
940
Something0001Something
63.0
 
1 63 63 22.0 0 0 0 1 0
941
Something To Talk About0001Something To Talk About
42.3
 
3 75 9 19.0 1 0 1 1 0
942
Sometimes I Cry0001Sometimes I Cry
45.0
 
1 45 45 24.0 0 0 1 0 0
943
Somewhere Only We Know0001Somewhere Only We Know
79.0
 
1 79 79 13.0 0 0 0 1 0
944
Somewhere Out There0001Somewhere Out There
82.0
 
1 82 82 12.0 0 0 0 0 1
945
72.0
 
1 72 72 18.0 0 0 0 1 0
946
Soulshine0001Soulshine
48.0
 
2 52 44 18.5 0 0 2 0 0
947
Sound of Silence0001The Sound of Silence
49.0
 
1 49 49 17.0 0 0 1 0 0
948
Spinning Wheel0001Spinning Wheel
76.5
 
2 84 69 19.5 0 0 0 1 1
949
Standing Right Next To Me0001Standing Right Next To Me
41.0
 
1 41 41 20.0 0 0 1 0 0
950
Stay With Me0001Stay With Me
70.5
 
2 75 66 17.5 0 0 0 2 0
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