The Best American Idol Contestants Ever Bands/Musicians
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The Best American Idol Contestants Ever

List Criteria: Only American Idol contestants should be on this list

Who are the best American Idol contestants ever? As the FOX reality singing competition show continues on after a dozen seasons, the list of great Idol contestants continues to grow. AI is a force to be reckoned with, and it's certainly among the best reality TV shows in recent memory. Which artist do you believe is the best AI alum of all time? Vote for your favorites, vote down any you just can't stand (yes, Sanjaya is on the list, so have at it) and, if your personal favorite isn't listed, add that contestant, please.

Here's the thing about American Idol: Most of the winners are genuinely outstanding singers and have gone on to enjoy great success in the music world. It's hard to argue that Kelly Clarkson, the very first AI winner from season one, isn't a phenomenal talent and a force in the music industry. She's definitely one of the best female vocalists around.The same goes for country songbird Carrie Underwood, who won Idol in the show's fourth season. She went on to become one of the most celebrated female vocalists of the past 10 years. And Phillip Phillips, the singer-songwriter who took the American Idol crown in 2012, is enjoying a great deal of success with his debut album, The World from the Side of the Moon.

One thing about this list of favorite 'American Idol' contestants: Many of the best artists didn't actually win on the show. Some were runners up, while others finished in the top five before getting booted off. 'Idol' runners up who went on to become major stars include Katharine McPhee, Adam Lambert, David Archuleta and Clay Aiken are all good examples. Oh, and guess what? Top five finishers who went on to great success would certainly include rocker Chris Daughtry, country singer Kelly Pickler and certainly Jennifer Hudson. J-Hud finished *seventh* on 'Idol' in season three, and went on to win an Academy Award for her performance in the movie Dreamgirls

Enjoy this list of 'American Idol' finalists, don't forget to vote. You can also re-rank this list in any order you want. While you're at it, why not cast your vote for the person you believe would be the next great 'American Idol' judge, too?


  • 17 ReRanks
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  1. 1
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    the people's #1
    Country pop, Pop music, Contemporary Christian music

    ) open
  2. 2
    + 549
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    most listed
    Adult contemporary music, Blues-rock, Blue-eyed soul

    ) open
  3. 3
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    Rock music, Pop rock, Post-grunge

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    ranked low on reranks
    Pop music, Rock music, Electronic music

    ) open
  5. 5
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    added by JohnHernandez
    Hip hop music, Pop music, Contemporary R&B

    ) open
  6. 6
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    Pop music, Contemporary R&B, Soul music

    ) open
  7. 7
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    Pop music, Contemporary R&B, Rhythm and blues

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    Country pop, Pop music, Country

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  10. 10
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    Rock music, Folk music, Indie rock

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  11. 11
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    often listed
    Christian music, Pop music, Teen pop

    ) open
  12. 12
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    ranked low on reranks & added by newdinfl
    Pop music, Contemporary Christian music, Pop rock

    ) open
  13. 13
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    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    Blue-eyed soul, Pop music, Teen pop

    ) open
  14. 14
    + 255
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    Christian music, Country rock, Pop rock

    ) open
  15. 15
    + 354
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    Blue-eyed soul, Pop music, Folk rock

    ) open
  16. 16
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    added by newdinfl
    Rhythm and blues, Jazz, Soul music

    ) open
  17. 17
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    Blues-rock, Rock music, Acoustic music

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  18. 18
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    Indie pop, Christian music, Pop music

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    added by First L
    Pop music, Rock music, Gothic metal

    ) open
  20. 20
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    added by First L
    Christian music, Pop music, Contemporary R&B

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  21. 21
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    added by Baseballislove
    Country

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  22. 22
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    added by delicio
    Pop music, Rock music, Jazz fusion Pop, Jazz

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  23. 23
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    added by newdinfl
    Contemporary R&B, Rhythm and blues, Soul music

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  24. 24
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    added by newdinfl
    Rock music, Folk rock, Alternative rock

    ) open
  25. 25
    + 153
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    added by newdinfl
    Contemporary R&B, Rhythm and blues, Jazz

    ) open
  26. 26
    + 101
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    added by newdinfl
    Blue-eyed soul, Pop music, Contemporary R&B

    ) open
  27. 27
    + 151
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    Glam metal, Progressive metal, Groove metal

    ) open
  28. 28
    + 166
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    added by newdinfl
    Adult contemporary music, Pop music, Electronic dance music

    ) open
  29. 29
    + 118
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    often listed & added by newdinfl
    Pop music

    ) open
  30. 30
    + 70
    - 331

    often listed & added by KrisAbosamra
    Rock music

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  31. 31
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    ranked low on reranks & added by newdinfl
    Blue-eyed soul, Country pop, Contemporary Christian music

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  32. 32
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    added by newdinfl
    Pop music

    ) open
  33. 33
    + 4
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    added by AlexYoung
    Pop rock

    ) open
  34. 34
    + 1
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    new! & added by AlexYoung
    Alexis Grace

  35. 35
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    No image

    added by Baseballislove
    Alternative rock, Rock music, Pop music

    ) open
  36. 36
    + 54
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    No image

    added by Baseballislove
    Heavy metal, Rock music, Hard rock

    ) open
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