American Idol: What Should the Top 4 Sing for One-Hit Wonders/Contestant's Choice?

American-Idol-Season-12-Top-4Fox hasn’t officially confirmed it, but sources close to American Idol are buzzing that Season 12 Top 4 week will be a two-theme kind of party: One-Hit Wonders and Contestant’s Choice.

The former — which topped an AT&T “fan’s choice” vote — has the potential to be fantastic, as long as producers don’t try to force the contestants toward novelty hits or tired old songs that have been covered on Idol a million times before (and simply happen to qualify under the one-hit wonder header).

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The latter theme is a cause for celebration because it’ll allow us to see the kinds of artists that Candice Glover, Kree Harrison, Angie Miller and Amber Holcomb want to be in a post-Idol world.

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Below are my dream set-list selections. Bear in mind I defined “One-Hot Wonder” as those artists who’ve only cracked the Billboard Top 40 on one occasion in their careers:

ONE-HIT WONDERS
Candice Glover: Groove Theory’s “Tell Me” or The Verve’s “Bittersweet Symphony” or Gnarls Barkley’s “Crazy” or Chanté Moore’s “Chanté’s Candice Got a Man” or Hot’s “Angel in Your Arms” or Ann Peebles’ “I Can’t Stand the Rain” (yep, she did it before Tina Turner)

Kree Harrison: Semisonic’s “Closing Time” or Concrete Blonde’s “Joey” or Dionne Farris’ “I Know” or Everlast’s “What It’s Like” or Blind Melon’s “No Rain” or Michael Penn’s “No Myth

Amber Holcomb: Lucy Pearl’s “Dance Tonight” or M. People’s “Movin’ on Up” or the Mary Jane Girls’ “In My House” or Sonique’s “It Feels So Good” or Breakfast Club’s “Right on Track” or Dr. Buzzard’s Original Savannah Band’s “Whispering/Cherchez La Femme/Se Si Bon

Angie Miller: New Radicals’ “You Get What You Give” or Donna Lewis’ “I Love You Always Forever” or When in Rome’s “The Promise” or Vivian Green’s “Emotional Rollercoaster” or Everything But the Girl’s “Missing

Contestant’s Choice
Candice Glover: Dolly Parton’s “What a Heartache” (seriously, this could be her own personal “I Will Always Love You”) or Jill Scott’s “Gettin’ in the Way

Kree Harrison: First Aid Kit’s “Emmylou” or Hank Williams’ “Cold Cold Heart

Angie Miller: Blake Lewis’ “Heartbreak on Vinyl” or Aimee Mann’s “Wise Up

Amber Holcomb: Deborah Cox’s “Nobody’s Supposed to Be Here (Hex Hector Mix)” or Adam Lambert’s “Sleepwalker

Your turn. What would you have the Top 4 sing next Wednesday? Sound off in the comments, and for all my Idol news, interviews and recaps follow me on Twitter @MichaelSlezakTV!

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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211 Comments
  1. lisa says:

    Why don’t Candice cover Heartbreak Hotel. Kree cover Not Ready to Make Nice. These two songs are great songs and are rarely covered in talent singing tv shows. It is clear that these 2 faves that should make it to the finale although it should be said Amber has built some momentum over the last 2 weeks and Angie has yet to appear in bottom2.

  2. Sean D says:

    Slezak I think you want Angie to be a little more interesting than she is. I think she’s definitely more Sara Bareilles than Aimee Mann or First Aid Kid. Nothing against Sara Bareilles it’s just…..different feels.

    Oo, and “Black Velvet” for Kree plz! I love your Dolly suggestion for Candice too

  3. Atlanta Mike says:

    Omg I would love it if amber sings lucy pearls dance tonight

  4. Joy says:

    I think Black Velvet would be perfect for Kree

  5. luvthetop5 says:

    Contestant Choices
    Amber Holcomb- Stay by Rihanna
    Angie Miller- A Thousand Years Christina Perri
    Kree Harrison- Jesus Take the Wheel by Carrie Underwood or anything from Carrie for that matter.
    Candice Glover- Hit em up Style by Blu Cantrell.
    One Hit wonders
    Amber-It Kills Me by Melanie Fiona or Love and War by Tamar Braxton
    Angie- Titanium by Sia(David Guetta) or Bulletproof by La Roux
    Kree- Best Days of Your Life by Kellie Pickler
    Candice- Hit em Up Style by Blu Cantrell or Tell Me Bout it by Joss Stone

  6. spartigus15 says:

    Chante Moore and Vivian Green are not one hit wonders get ur life!

  7. WendyL says:

    Amber – Harden My Heart by Quarterflash
    Candice – Invisible – Alison Moyet
    Kree – The Night That The Lights Went Out in Georgia – Vicki Lawrence
    Angie – Running Up That Hill – Kate Bush

  8. CK says:

    I’d love to hear Kree do some Hank Williams. She’s got that perfect cryin’ quality to her voice.

  9. CK says:

    Imagine Candice doing “Light My Fire” by the Doors. Could be a moment like she had with the Cure’s “Love Song”. So unexpected but might be awesome.

  10. Tazz says:

    Am I the Only Person who thinks Amber’s voice would be amzing with Mariah Carey’s My All? I know she messed up Without You, but “My All” would be perfect for her range.

    • Marta says:

      Jessica Sanchez proved last year just how difficult that song is to sing…. I don’t think Amber has it in her– it requires such a level of both technical and emotional connection- but it is my favorite Mariah song!

  11. Jasmine says:

    This is in response to Slezak’s song choices for my favorite, Angela. I have quite a bit to say so here goes.
    New Radicals – You Get What You Give
    I think the beginning alone would just energize people and get them up and ready to rock, which could be a good thing for Angela. However, the song is sung by a male which means the key is obviously going to be lower and this means that it might be too low for Angela’s voice. She needs big moments and I don’t think this song will give her a big vocal moment. It’s too restricting. However, it’s a beautiful song.

    Donna Lewis – I Love You Always Forever
    Initial thoughts…might be too high for Angela in case she wants to really blow and take it there in those big moments, which might force her to change the key so she can hit the notes better. I’m such a stickler for keeping songs in the original keys. Don’t really like key changes unless it occurs in the original song. As I’m listening to this song…it sounds too boring. Until it gets into the clappy bridge part which Angela could slick turn into a proud churchy type moment with the choir singing also and the audience clapping. That would be a good feel good moment, but maybe another song choice will do her voice more justice and make her the frontrunner again and not Candice. Pretty song though.

    When In Rome – The Promise
    Very fun song. Again, sung by a male so Angela might have to sing it an octave higher, which I don’t think she could pull off without sounding too pitchy. If kept in the original octave, it could work….but we need a big vocal moment, like I said, and for that, this song would not work.

    Vivian Green’s – Emotional Rollercoaster
    At first I was like…”NO”… this song is not for Angela with her precise diction/pronunciation and everything. But now I’m realizing that this song choice could be a smart move for her and perhaps turn some R&B fans heads a little bit. Really beautiful song. Could bring out Angie’s more emotional side. She could definitely put her own spin on it and it would definitely work, especially in the chorus she could take it up an octave there and, as a result, boggle my mind. She’d sound so good singing this song.

    Everything But The Girl – Missing
    Mmmmm….I don’t think so….well, not with this dance arrangement. If the song could be stripped down with just Angela’s beautiful voice and the piano…,maybe. But there are better song choices.

    Blake Lewis – Heartbreak in Vinyl
    Again, Angela and dance music? That doesn’t mix at all. Slow this joker down and you would have a masterpiece vocal for Angela. If she could make it more acoustic sounding, unplugged, that could definitely work. This would be a good song choice for her.

    Aimee Mann – Wise Up
    Yes, yes, and YES! PERFECT SONG CHOICE FOR ANGELA! Her and the piano again, but it wouldn’t be like her other piano performances which all sound virtually the same with those basic piano chords and basic rhythm. This takes her playing a step further. And perhaps, towards the bridge, she could bring in a choir and this could be one of the most EPIC moments. She could keep singing that same line “It’s not going to stop” and let it build and build and build, which would probably raised the adrenaline in the room and give people goosies. Mmmm, yes…PICK THIS SONG ANGELA! This song is brilliant for her!

    Okay my spiel is over. Time to go critique some more songs for Angela. As you can see, I have a lot of time on my hands and what better time to spend it on my favorite girl right now, Angela Miller!

  12. Marta says:

    Blind Melon- No Rain…YES!!!! If my memory serves me, I don’t ever remember it being covered on a reality singing competition- and that’s a damn shame. If any girl sang it, Id love to hand her the title, crown, and sash on the spot.

    • HitTheGroundRunning says:

      Another cool choice and yet I bet not so easy to pull off a lot of what made it was the very particular vocal. Still, this one might be possible.

  13. Aditius says:

    Ok I have a bit opinion for this one.
    Contestant’s Choice only:
    1. Candice Glover – And I am Telling You I’m not Going (Jennifer Holiday)
    2. Angie Miller – 2 Black Cadillacs (Carie Underwood)
    3. Amber Holcomb – I Hvae Nothing (Whitney Houston)
    4. Kree Harison – You Don’t Have to Say You Love Me (Dusty Springfield)
    What do you think?

  14. Adam Fachry says:

    Everybody seems to want New Radicals’ You Get What You Give to be performed so bad, I think it would work better as a group number. Anthemic and feel-good, I don’t think one person alone could carry those sentiments well. All four of them should sing it together.

    Also, of all Slezak’s pick, Gnarls Barkley’s Crazy is definitely tailor-made for Candice. Here’s an idea: turn her rendition into full-on acapella a la Bo Bice’s In a Dream. THIS WOULD BE A MOMENT, FOR SURE!

  15. MsJosh says:

    PERFECT contestant’s choice song for Angie “Miley Cyrus” Miller, Evanescence “My Immortal” while sitting at the piano. WINNING!

  16. lala says:

    I could imagine Amber doing “What’s up” by 4 Non Blondes. It will sound so “RIGHT NOW” and fresh. She needs to find the perfect arrangement for it.

  17. lala says:

    would love to hear Kree sing “Bed of roses” by Bon Jovi. female rendition of that would be nice.

  18. lizzie says:

    Uh, Michael. The Verve’s “Bittersweet Symphony” is hardly a one hit wonder as the band has had continued chart success in the UK for the better part of the 90s. But I do agree it’s a great choice for Candice.

  19. lala says:

    please don’t make Angie sing Titanium. she is prone to oversinging.. i’ve heard her cover of this song and I’d rather play Cortez Shaw’s version repeatedly.

  20. Kim Swanson says:

    I am really REALLY hoping that contestant’s choice is just that: ANY song they want to sing, including one of their originals. I know both Angie & Kree have a lot of original material to choose from. The others might also have original songs to choose from. I would personally LOVE to see an original songs theme. It benefits everyone. The contestants sing ina genre that they are comfortable with, they can really pour their hearts out with a song they are personally connected with, and the viewers get a sense of what they are capable of post-idol. Even if the contestants haven’t yet written any songs, they could easily work with writers to come up with something that suits them. It’s a win-win-win situation. C’mon producers!

  21. whatshouldbe says:

    I think Candice will be singing something from Taylor Swift for the Open theme. She tweeted Kanye West. I know she loves Taylor, so maybe she’s doing her?

    • Adam Fachry says:

      I hope that hint she gave doesn’t end with a Taylor Swift song. Maybe Justin Timberlake? Kanye once dissed Suit & Tie at his concert and it made headlines. Maybe she’ll be doing Mirrors? Or one of Slezak’s picks from an article he posted ages ago: Cry Me A River. OMG pleaaasee.

      • whatshouldbe says:

        I’m not the biggest Taylor fan but I know Candice can make me like songs I hate. She’s got skills, man.

      • whatshouldbe says:

        And she said she’s taking a risk. Fits the bill. I trust her instincts. I mean, look what she did with Love Song and Straight Up.

  22. Alex Pizziolo says:

    OMG, being from Brazil I literally don’t know any song that you listed. I’m gonna suggest something more current for them.

    One-Hit Wonder

    Amber: Feeling Good – Michael Bublé
    Angie: Flyleaf – All Around Me
    Candice: Back To Black – Amy Winehouse
    Kree: Cosmic Love – Florence + The Machine

    Contestant’s Choice

    Amber: Bleeding Love – Leona Lewis
    Angie: Gravity – Sara Bareilles
    Candice: Need U Bad – Jazmine Sullivan
    Kree: Stay – Sugarland

    • Leticia Prado says:

      Is Amy Winehouse a One-Hit-Wonder? I’m in Brazil also, and a lot of stuff from her got played around here, didnt it?

      • Alex Pizziolo says:

        She’s a global star, but in the US she is a One-hit wonder by the definition of the term (only one song to break into the Top 40, Rehab).

  23. Leticia Prado says:

    Am I the only one that thinks Angie looks like Hannah Montana with an 80s haircut?

    • TheGirlsRock says:

      Looks like Angie is doing Jesse J. @AngieAI12 you should preform “who you are” by Jessie j on the finale or one of these next weeks. Please!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
      Retweeted by Angie Miller

    • HitTheGroundRunning says:

      nope, it’s been said 1000x times actually, so no, not at all

  24. tonya says:

    Really some you all are giving song choices that make no since for amber and people see right threw that stop hating.

  25. Jayda says:

    Why do you always pick such obscure songs that no one in their right mind would ever choose on this show? And even if the contestants know some of these songs, why would Idol pay for clearance when they’ll never be used again?

  26. HitTheGroundRunning says:

    One problem with tons of these songs, especially one hit wonders from 80s, is that they are deceptively simple seeming. A certain pop energy and a very, very particular tone of voice and vocal style were big parts of their success and if you don’t have that then they end up seeming too plain and I don’t know that the contestants we have necessarily have that. Even, and obvious not one hit wonder here, Britney Spears, people are like oh what ridiculously simple songs/if she can sing it good grief anyone can with ease and yet 98% of time you hear someone try to sing her songs they utterly fail and they end up not being able to sing it at all and it comes out terribly. Some could be re-worked and still work, but that is tricky in one week and if it starts going wrong not much time left to correct.
    .
    Others appear like they might be ‘simple pop songs’ but are surprisingly tricky vocally.
    .
    Til Tuesday – Voices Carry – cool song and yet would it be easy for it to work for any of these four?
    Modern English – I Melt (With You) – awesome song but could it actually work in this scenario for any of them?
    Rachel Yamagata – Worn Me Down
    Dragonette – Hello yeah cool but could it actually work in this scenario?
    .
    it’s all tricky even the already suggest New Radicals – You Get What You Give, I’m not so sure it is so easily adaptable to any of these four
    .
    John Waite – Missing You
    Jeff Healey Band – Angel Eyes – and some would seem to need us to have had both a guy left and one with the right sort of style unless Candice could somehow make something of it
    T’Pau – Heart & Soul – probably nobody with enough of a rock sort of style to do it

  27. HitTheGroundRunning says:

    Amy Grant – Baby Baby – Angie???? still might not be wise though
    .
    Berlin – Take My Breath Away might fit Angie’s voice? this might actually work
    .
    Blu Cantrell – Hit Em Up Style could definitely work for some of them, heck it already did, although maybe they’d get ragged for a pseudo repeat? but this could for sure work for some of them
    .
    Alphaville – Forever Younger perhaps could be tooled to fit one of them?
    .
    .
    .
    A-HA! OK I’ve got it! Let all four of them perform as their one hit wonder: Together Forever and just Rick Roll the whole damn production! It may be about time, no? :)
    hahaha that would be classic.

  28. drjphd says:

    Songs I’d enjoy, regardless of who sings them:

    Melody Gardot’s “Your Heart is as Black as Night” or “Our Love is Easy”
    Phyllis Hyman’s “I Refuse to be Lonely”
    George Benson’s versions of “Love Ballad” or “This Masquerade”
    Antonio Carlos Jobim “Waters of March”
    George Strait’s “I Cross My Heart”
    Yolanda Adams “I Believe”
    Sade’s “No Ordinary Love”
    Bobby Caldwell’s “What You Won’t Do for Love”
    James Ingram’s “Just Once”
    Basia’s “Cruising for a Bruising”
    Chaka Khan’s “Through the Fire”
    Steve Perry’s “Foolish Heart”
    Boz Scaggs “We’re All Alone” or “Look What You’ve Done to Me”
    Brian McKnight’s “Back at One”
    Ambrosia’s “Biggest Part of Me”

  29. Carrie says:

    I am OBSSESSED with Candice Glove! And I would DESPERATELY love to hear her sing Paul Anka’s version of “You Are My Destiny”!!! She would SLAY that song!!!

  30. Tom22 says:

    Amber should sing “Come on Eileen” only because it makes me smile ! lol. It actually has some room to show a bit of range and power to it .. but.. .. yeah probably not.

  31. Jess says:

    Ariana Grande is performing on Thursday. She has said Mariah is the best singer in the world, so we will have yet another person fawning over Mariah and showing her influence. Will Nicki spontaneously combust?

  32. JaimeeD says:

    I would love to hear Candice sing ” Here’s Where I Stand”, sung by Tifanni Taylor in the movie “CAMP”. She could really blow the roof off of that theater.

  33. Geoff says:

    Contestants choice:

    Candace Glover — Would I Lie To You (Eurythmics)
    Amber Holcomb — Hate on Me Hater (Jill Scott)
    Angie Miller — Silent All These Years (Tori Amos)
    Kree — Seven Year Ache (Roseanne Cash)

  34. HitTheGroundRunning says:

    one hit:
    missy higgins – where i stood – angie

  35. Jess says:

    Song choices are out for all but Kree, and we should have known they would be cop outs. The one-hit wonder songs are songs that were the only hit for 1 artist, but they are songs that many artists have covered, including legends. Lame!!

  36. Vince says:

    **SPOILER**

    Candice is singing Find Your Love by Drake for the Contestants Choice. And she’s singing Emotion by Samantha Sang/Destiny’s Child for the One Hit Wonder. I’m not really okay with the Drake song but I know she’s gonna do something really good with it. And oh yeah, Angie is singing Jessie J for the third time and she’s going to repeat a song for the second time this season! Good luck to her…

    And Amber is singing The Power of Love by Celine Dion for the Contestant’s Choice. Which is somewhat really not good because that song has been covered a lot on Idol.

  37. Dean says:

    Angie should sing her OWN song, ‘you set me free’.

  38. Jay says:

    Kree singing Dionne Farris’ “I Know” would be awesome! I love the song and it would be so nice to hear something upbeat for a change. If anything is impacting AI’s ratings this year, I’m thinking it’s all the boring ballads.

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