Idol Carole King
Credit: Michael Becker/Fox; Inset: Kevin Winter/Getty Images

Like I’m sure many of you, when I heard this week’s theme on American Idol was the songs of Carole King, I could not roll my eyes fast enough. Yes, of course, King is one of the great American songwriters of the last 50 years, but she isn’t exactly the most cutting-edge musician when it comes to finding a recording artist for today’s airwaves. But then I started scouring the woman’s catalogue for my weekly picks of what the Idol contestants should (and should not) sing, and I realized that, A of all, King’s songs are built to be covered by other singers. (James Taylor, Barbra Streisand, Celine Dion, Aretha Franklin, The Carpenters, Isaac Hayes, Donny Hathaway, and Roberta Flack have all charted hits from King’s songs.) And B of all, she managed to write songs that fit each of the Idol Top 6 like a hand to a glove. So consider me 100 percent more excited for tonight’s show. Check out my picks below for the individual performances — since we don’t yet know how the Idols will be pairing off to sing their duets, I’ll leave those suggestions to you in the comments.

Casey Abrams

DO SING: “It’s Never Too Late” (It’s an obscure track, but you can listen to a clip here.)

DO NOT SING: “Jazzman” (so tempting, but all those long, drawn out notes won’t do Casey’s voice any favors)

Lauren Alaina

DO NOT SING: “You’ve Got a Friend” (unless it’s a duet with Casey); “Where You Lead” (unless it’s a duet with Lauren Graham)

James Durbin

DO NOT SING: “Corazón”

Jacob Lusk

Scotty McCreery

DO SING: “So Far Away” (But Capt. Cheeseball needs to go sad and heartfelt)

Haley Reinhart

Those are my picks. What are yours?

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