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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
Where Did Our Love Go0001Where Did Our Love Go
35.0
 
1 35 35 20.0 0 1 0 0 0
927
I Can't Help Myself Sugar Pie Honey Bunch0001I Can't Help Myself (Sugar Pie Honey Bunch)
34.8
 
5 82 6 13.8 2 1 1 0 1
928
When I Fall In Love0001When I Fall In Love
34.7
 
3 42 27 19.7 0 2 1 0 0
929
Its Still Rock And Roll To Me0001It's Still Rock And Roll To Me
34.5
 
2 35 34 13.5 0 2 0 0 0
930
How Do I Live0001How Do I Live
34.3
 
3 43 29 21.7 0 2 1 0 0
931
Crazy0001Crazy
34.0
 
2 43 25 16.5 0 1 1 0 0
932
Dont Stop0001Don't Stop
34.0
 
1 34 34 17.0 0 1 0 0 0
933
Hicktown0001Hicktown
34.0
 
1 34 34 17.0 0 1 0 0 0
934
Hit Me Up0001Hit Me Up
34.0
 
1 34 34 20.0 0 1 0 0 0
935
Im Yours0001I'm Yours
34.0
 
2 38 30 19.5 0 2 0 0 0
936
In This Moment0001In This Moment
American Idol original song
34.0
 
1 34 34 17.0 0 1 0 0 0
937
Jeremy0001Jeremy
34.0
 
1 34 34 22.0 0 1 0 0 0
938
Last Dance0001Last Dance
34.0
 
3 58 7 16.0 1 1 1 0 0
939
Now And Forever0001Now And Forever
34.0
 
1 34 34 21.0 0 1 0 0 0
940
Stand Up For Love0001Stand Up For Love
34.0
 
1 34 34 14.0 0 1 0 0 0
941
Storm Warning0001Storm Warning
34.0
 
1 34 34 22.0 0 1 0 0 0
942
Young Blood0001Young Blood
34.0
 
1 34 34 20.0 0 1 0 0 0
943
Best Of My Love0001Best Of My Love
33.5
 
2 63 4 15.0 1 0 0 1 0
944
I Say A Little Prayer0001I Say A Little Prayer
33.5
 
2 48 19 14.5 1 0 1 0 0
945
Music Of My Heart0001Music Of My Heart
33.5
 
2 59 8 14.5 1 0 1 0 0
946
Reasons0001Reasons
33.5
 
2 35 32 21.0 0 2 0 0 0
947
My Girl0001My Girl
33.4
 
5 62 6 16.8 1 2 1 1 0
948
Blank Space0001Blank Space
33.0
 
1 33 33 24.0 0 1 0 0 0
949
Boondocks0001Boondocks
33.0
 
1 33 33 15.0 0 1 0 0 0
950
Caught Up In The Rapture0001Caught Up In The Rapture
33.0
 
1 33 33 14.0 0 1 0 0 0
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