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"American Idol" Coronation Songs: How Does Lambert or Allen's "No Boundaries" Rank?

May 20, 2009 5:27 PM ET

When Adam Lambert and Kris Allen sang "No Boundaries" — the Kara DioGuardi co-written Season Eight American Idol coronation song — last night, the judges came dangerously close to calling the track utter crap (since when has Simon Cowell restrained himself from judging the song?). But has Idol ever given its victor a decent tune at the finale? The tracks are universally schmaltzy ballads that try to capture the awesomeness of the show's rags-to-riches premise: a no-name plucked from obscurity earns his or her shot at superstardom.

Kelly Clarkson's "A Moment Like This" may be the best of the bunch — it features a memorable hook, hit Number One and even became the soundtrack to a series of Sandals resorts commercials. Taylor Hicks' Season Five stinker "Do I Make Your Proud" could be the worst (hint: never title a song with a rhetorical question when the answer is almost always "no"). Jordin Sparks got off relatively unscathed with the timely "This Is My Now," though few were convinced that Ruben Studdard could pull off "Flying Without Wings." So where does "No Boundaries" rank among Idol's eight attempts? We'll take your reviews in the comments (watch all the songs after the jump). And don't forget to check back later for Rob Sheffield's finale live blog.

Season One: Kelly Clarkson's "A Moment Like This"

Season Two: Ruben Studdard's "Flying Without Wings"

Season Three: Fantasia's "I Believe"

Season Four: Carrie Underwood's "Inside Your Heaven"

Season Five: Taylor Hicks' "Do I Make You Proud"

Season Six: Jordin Sparks' "This Is My Now"

Season 7: David Cook's "Time of My Life"

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Song Stories

“Money For Nothing”

Dire Straits | 1984

Mark Knopfler wrote this song with Sting, and it wasn’t without controversy. The Dire Straits frontman's original lyric used the word “faggot” to describe a singer who got their “money for nothing and their chicks for free.” Even though the slur was edited out in many versions, the band, and Knopfler, still took plenty of criticism for the term. “I got an objection from the editor of a gay newspaper in London--he actually said it was below the belt,” Knopfler told Rolling Stone. Still, "Money For Nothing," undoubtedly augmented by its innovative early computer-animated video, stayed at Number One for three weeks.

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