'American Idol' MySpace auditions: Brace for 'Achy Breaky Heart,' 'Mickey,' 'Copacabana,' and 'Your Body's Callin'

Idol-MySpace-AuditionsImage Credit: Ebet Roberts/Redferns/Getty Images; Michael Ochs Archives/Getty ImagesAmerican Idol has entered the MySpace era (aka 2006), and is tapping into the powerful musical legacies of Toni Basil, Billy Ray Cyrus, and the Crash Test Dummies. Nope, I’m not pulling your leg. For the first time in its ten-season history, Fox’s behemoth of a singing competition is giving contestants the chance to audition online at myspace.com/americanidol from now through Oct. 6. Hopefuls between the ages of 15 and 28 (as of July 15, 2010) can submit 40-second videos in which they belt out one of 90 pre-approved tracks (listed below). Idol producers will then invite a select number of online auditioners to the next round of callbacks in Los Angeles. (For the record, the callback round is the first portion of the Idol process that takes place in front of celebrity judges; the open-call auditions that have been taking place at stadium-sized venues across the country for the last month occur in front of producers, who narrow down tens of thousands of contestants to more manageable numbers.)

Theoretically, I love this idea as much as the bag of Cheetos I shamefully scarfed down about an hour ago.  I mean, should a future Fantasia or Daughtry see a dream get crushed just because he or she can’t afford transportation to the nearest audition city, or can’t score a day off from the old nine-to-five? Heck, no! The only thing that makes me skittish is the pre-approved song list: For the love of Spyro Gyra, when are the show’s producers going to hire a list of “song-clearance professionals” whose tastes aren’t confined by the bookends of Golden Oldies and Tragique Novelty Hits? Okay, I’m a little intrigued that “Physical Attraction,” an album cut from Madonna’s debut disc, found its way on here — does this mean a Madge Week is nigh? — nor could one go wrong with “What I Am” or “Sweet Thing” or “Little Lies.” But are they kidding with “Mmmm Mmmm Mmmm Mmmm” and “Safety Dance” and “Dream Weaver”? Maybe some of these tracks are simply traps, and the contestants who pick ‘em will face automatic disqualification?

What do you think, Idoloonies? Are online auditions a good alternative to city-by-city cattle calls? And which of the 90 pre-approved ditties make you cringe?

“(God Must Have Spent) A Little More Time On You,” NSYNC
“(Sittin’ On) The Dock Of The Bay,” Otis Redding
“A Song For You,” The  Temptations
“A Thousand Miles,” Vanessa Carlton
“Achy Breaky Heart,” Billy Ray Cyrus
“Ain’t No Sunshine,” Bill Withers
“Ain’t No Woman (Like The One I’ve Got),” The  Four Tops
“All By Myself,” Eric Carmen
“All Out Of Love,” Air Supply
“And I Am Telling You I’m Not Going,” Dreamgirls
“Baby, I Love Your Way,” Peter Frampton
“Back At One,” Brian McKnight
“Ballroom Blitz,” The  Sweet
“Band Of Gold,” Freda Payne
“Borderline,” Madonna
“Born To Be Wild,” Steppenwolf
“California Dreamin’,” The  Mamas & The Papas
“Copacabana,” Barry Manilow
“Don’t Pull Your Love,” Hamilton, Joe Frank & Reynolds
“Don’t Stop,” Fleetwood Mac
“Don’t Talk To Strangers,” Rick Springfield
“Dream Weaver,” Gary Wright
“Drift Away,” Dobie Gray
“Even The Nights Are Better,” Air Supply
“Every Rose Has Its Thorn,” Poison
“Free Bird,” Lynyrd Skynyrd
“God Bless The U.S.A.,” Lee Greenwood
“Hard To Handle,” The Black Crowes
“Harder To Breathe,” Maroon 5
“Hemorrhage (In My Hands),” Fuel
“Here I Am (Come And Take Me),” Al Green
“Hold Me,” Fleetwood Mac
“Home,” Daughtry
“I Believe I Can Fly,” R. Kelly
“I Wanna Dance With Somebody,” Whitney Houston
“I Will Survive,” Gloria Gaynor
“I Write The Songs,” Barry Manilow
“I’ve Been Loving You Too Long,” Otis Redding
“It s All Coming Back To Me Now,” Celine Dion
“Jessie’s Girl,” Rick Springfield
“Joy To The World,” Three Dog Night
“Just One Look,” The  Hollies
“Kiss A Girl,” Keith Urban
“Kryptonite,” 3 Doors Down
“Lean On Me,” Bill Withers
“Little Lies,” Fleetwood Mac
“Loser,” 3 Doors Down
“Love Will Find A Way,” Christina Aguilera
“Magic Carpet Ride,”  Steppenwolf
“Mickey,” Toni Basil
“Midnight Train To Georgia,” Gladys Knight & The Pips
“Mmmm Mmmm Mmmm Mmmm,” Crash Test Dummies
“More Than Words,” Extreme
“Neither One Of Us (Wants To Be The First To Say Goodbye),” Gladys Knight & The Pips
“New Attitude,” Patti LaBelle
“Nothin’ But A Good Time,” Poison
“Now And Forever,” Richard Marx
“Old Fashioned Love Song,” Three Dog Night
“One Last Cry,” Brian McKnight
“Physical Attraction,” Madonna
“Rainy Days And Mondays,” Carpenters
“Ride Like The Wind,” Christopher Cross
“Safety Dance,” Men Without Hats
“Sailing,” Christopher Cross
“Sara,” Starship
“Screaming Infidelities,” Dashboard Confessional
“She Will Be Loved,” Maroon 5
“Show Me The Way,” Peter Frampton
“Simple Man,” Lynyrd Skynyrd
“Something To Belive In,” Poison
“Sunday Morning,” Maroon 5
“Sweet Home Alabama,” Lynyrd Skynyrd
“Sweet Thing,” Rufus & Chaka Khan
“Talk Dirty To Me,” Poison
“Tearin’ Up My Heart,” NSYNC
“That’s Life,” Frank Sinatra
“The First Cut Is The Deepest,” Sheryl Crow
“The One That You Love,” Air Supply
“The World’s Greatest,” R. Kelly
“This Love,” Maroon 5
“We Got The Beat,” The Go Go’s
“We’re Not Gonna Take It,” Twisted Sister
“We’ve Only Just Begun,” Carpenters
“What I Am,” Edie Brickell & The New Bohemians
“Where Does My Heart Beat Now,” Celine Dion
“You Are Not Alone,” Michael Jackson
“You Are So Beautiful,” Joe Cocker
“You Give Good Love,” Whitney Houston
“Your Body’s Callin’,” R. Kelly
“Finally,” CeCe Peniston

Comments (31 total) Add your comment
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  • mark

    they are all cringe-worthy. no wonder why there is no originality or good songs on this show…

  • Kristina

    Richard Marx… really? Does anyone auditioning for the show actually remember who that is?

    • WTF?

      And sadly, that’s one of the more melodically sound songs on the list!

  • rebecca

    BORN TO BE WIILLLLLDDDDD!! Oh I can just imagine someone screeching those words, not good!

    • darcy’s evil twin

      I had the same thought. “Snowblind Friend” is a much better choice, IMO.

  • Emma

    not all of them are that terrible. Daughtry is certainly not “cringeworthy.

    • sweetsmoke1

      Yes he is! Did we really need a Nickleback lite?

  • Stormy

    What a crap list! I not only feel sorry for the performers, i also sympathize with whomever has to screen the auditions.

  • Quirky

    Curse You EW! Just reading the name “Safety Dance” has now embedded that damn song back into my head again.

    • D’s Advocate

      Everybody look at your hands!

    • Mr. Holloway


  • rentagoodbook

    “Finally,” CeCe Peniston. Really? For a singing competition, you really do need something with a melody. Conspiracy theory: maybe some of these songs are stealth eliminators…but this could break all kinds of bad. Hopefully they won’t show an overkill of the more cringeworthy versions…

  • ABBAesque

    Anything Manilow makes me recoil but Sara by Starship induced both a cringe and a disbelieving gasp. HJFR’s Don’t Pull caused an instant of sweet nostalgic recognition followed by shame that I know and recall the tune. For anyone who does not know it, pray that you may remain in innocence. And finally Air Supply, FTW.

  • brandy

    R to the ANDOM.

    I saw a couple of good songs, but that’s about it. What the what?

  • mr_clean

    MySpace??? that’s even more dated than….well, American Idol.

    • Mr. Holloway


      Then again, given their usual choices in theme nights, this is no surprise. I wonder if we’ll be able to download these performances on Napster or Limewire.

    • Jenny

      News Corp owns both Fox and Myspace so they are probably trying to boost myspace which is pretty much a failed investment at this point.

  • KC

    On the plus side: Against All Odds is NOT on the approved list. Maybe that’ll continue for the whole season?

    • darcy’s evil twin

      Made me laugh! Neither is ‘Hallelujah”. I’ve said it before, but there was a time when they could have just changed the name of the show to “Against All Odds – it’s Hallelujah Idol”.

      That darned Titanic song isn’t on the list either.

      I hate to admit it, but “Achy Breaky Heart” and “Mickey” have very catchy tunes. And “Copabana” isn’t a totally bad song because it tells a story, and I love a song that tells a story.

  • woohoo

    if they did boy band night, nysync,backstreetboys, 98 degrees ect… oh crap… i hope ai doesnt see this. the best part of the list is saying what you would sing, for me… id do the twisted sister song… SLEZAK cant wait for idolatry, my tivo doesnt work with my airport so no ai for me this, year, but i could never give up idolatry!!!!

  • facebook

    what would be if Ozzy Osborne were on the panel? I’m just think outloud. That would be Hilarious!

  • Prunella Von Schleidlhaagen

    MySpace still exists?

    • tanya

      “like this”

  • SaraJ

    This is a good thing.. I have plenty of students who can’t afford to travel two states over, or even have a parent to drive them to the nearest city. And they can sing better than the entire top 10 from the last season.

    If you get a callback, they pay for your plane ride, correct?

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