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Do You Mind when Idol Contestants Sing Other Artists' Covers?

Do You Mind when Idol Contestants Sing Other Artists' Covers?

If it's Springtime, there must be an American Idol controversy brewing. Right on cue, David Cook has stepped up as this year's rabble-rouser. Much like Chris Daughtry was slammed for performing a version of "Walk the Line" that was originally performed by Live without identifying the band as his inspiration, Cook has found himself at the center of controversies over covers of his own.

A band called Doxology is accusing Cook of using their version of "Eleanor Rigby" for a Beatles week performance without giving them proper credit. When Cook performed Chris Cornell's version of "Billie Jean" on Idol last week, the judges praised his originality — despite the fact that Ryan Seacrest identified the song as Cornell's in the intro to the performance.

Maybe Cook is really an innovative musician and performer. Maybe he's just skilled at finding cover versions of songs he likes and singing them well. Here's my question: Does it matter? Should Idol contestants be limited to the original arrangements of songs, or should all covers be fair game?

Photo courtesy of Fox

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