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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
201
Hello Young Lovers0001Hello, Young Lovers
From: The King And I
62.0
 
1 62 62 17.0 0 0 0 1 0
202
Help Me Make It Through The Night0001Help Me Make It Through The Night
77.0
 
1 77 77 17.0 0 0 0 1 0
203
Here Comes Goodbye0001Here Comes Goodbye
60.0
 
2 79 41 19.5 0 0 1 1 0
204
Here You Come Again0001Here You Come Again
69.0
 
1 69 69 19.0 0 0 0 1 0
205
Hey There Delilah0001Hey There Delilah
54.0
 
2 67 41 20.5 0 0 1 1 0
206
Hold On Im Comin0001Hold On, I'm Comin'
70.0
 
1 70 70 16.0 0 0 0 1 0
207
Home0001Home
American Idol original song
74.0
 
1 74 74 22.0 0 0 0 1 0
208
Home 10001Home
76.0
 
2 85 67 11.5 0 0 0 1 1
209
Home 20001Home
64.0
 
1 64 64 23.0 0 0 0 1 0
210
Hot Stuff0001Hot Stuff
71.0
 
1 71 71 23.0 0 0 0 1 0
211
House Of Rising Sun0001House Of The Rising Sun
84.5
 
2 94 75 14.0 0 0 0 1 1
212
How Am I Supposed To Live Without You0001How Am I Supposed To Live Without You
36.0
 
5 62 18 18.8 1 3 0 1 0
213
How Sweet It Is (To Be Loved By You)0001How Sweet It Is (To Be Loved By You)
30.6
 
5 68 15 14.6 2 2 0 1 0
214
How Will I Know0001How Will I Know
64.0
 
1 64 64 21.0 0 0 0 1 0
215
Human0001Human
66.5
 
2 77 56 22.0 0 0 1 1 0
216
Human Nature0001Human Nature
62.0
 
1 62 62 20.0 0 0 0 1 0
217
I Am I Said0001I Am…I Said
69.0
 
1 69 69 19.0 0 0 0 1 0
218
I Believe To My Soul0001I Believe To My Soul
58.0
 
2 68 48 20.0 0 0 1 1 0
219
I Can Love You Like That0001I Can Love You Like That
63.0
 
1 63 63 17.0 0 0 0 1 0
220
I Cant Make You Love Me0001I Can't Make You Love Me
60.0
 
5 85 31 19.0 0 1 1 1 2
221
I Dont Want To Be0001I Don't Want To Be
53.3
 
6 82 40 19.5 0 0 4 1 1
222
I Drove All Night0001I Drove All Night
74.0
 
1 74 74 18.0 0 0 0 1 0
223
I Feel The Earth Move0001I Feel The Earth Move
49.3
 
3 64 39 20.0 0 1 1 1 0
224
I Hope You Dance0001I Hope You Dance
77.0
 
1 77 77 19.0 0 0 0 1 0
225
I Knew You Were Waiting (For Me)0001I Knew You Were Waiting (For Me)
41.7
 
3 72 21 17.3 0 2 0 1 0
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