Kelly Clarkson Speaks Out on the One Song She’s ‘Afraid to Cover’

by Katie Maloney

You’ll never guess which song powerhouse singer Kelly Clarkson refuses to sing. We’ll give you a hint: the song was a huge hit in 2019.

Undoubtedly, Kelly Clarkson can sing. After winning the first season of American Idol in 2002, Kelly released hit songs including “Because of You,” “Breakaway,” and “Miss Independent.” But it wasn’t until Kelly started hosting her own show, The Kelly Clarkson Show, that fans really got to see her singing talents. Kelly has a segment on the show called “Kellyoke.” During the segment, Kelly chooses different songs to cover. Kelly has consistently blown fans away with her renditions of songs spanning across a variety of music genres. Some of the songs she covered include, “Barracuda” by Heart, “Should I Stay or Should I Go” by The Clash, and “Hold On, We’re Going Home,” by Drake. However, Kelly recently revealed that there’s one song she won’t cover.

While working with her team’s advisor, Luis Fonsi, during a recent episode of The Voice, Kelly told Luis that she’s “afraid” to cover his 2017 hit song “Despacito.”

“I just realized something, you have the one song in history that I’m afraid to cover,” said Kelly to Luis. “I have practiced so hard, because I love singing in Spanish and different languages, and it is like the biggest song of all time, but you’re like, ‘You know what? I’m gonna leave that alone!'”

Luis Fonsi recorded “Despacito,” with Daddy Yankee and later remixed the song to add Justin Bieber in 2019. The song soared to fame, topping the charts in 47 countries and becoming the most-viewed video of all time on YouTube at the time. Can you guess which video broke the record in 2020? “Baby Shark Dance.” We’re not going to say anything about that except that we all know that 2020 was a crazy year.

What Inspired Kelly Clarkson’s Show Segment ‘Kellyoke’?

As she soared to fame on American Idol, fans loved seeing Kelly Clarkson cover famous songs every week. To this day, Clarkson receives emails from fans asking her to cover their favorite songs. So, Kelly’s musical director, Jason Halbert decided to add those requests to The Kelly Clarkson Show. During an interview in 2019, Jason Halbert shared how he pitched the idea for the segment.

“I think because of how she started on Idol, covering so many great songs on the show. When I first started with her, I used to get tons of emails from fans requesting that she cover certain songs,” said Jason. “So I brought her the idea of, ‘Why don’t we do a fan request every day?’ She loved the idea, and I think we’ve been doing it since almost the very beginning. Whenever they were coming up with a concept for the show, that sort of morphed into ‘Kellyoke.'”

Jason added that he and Kelly choose songs that highlight Kelly’s natural talent, which isn’t difficult to do.

“Emotion and authenticity and sincerity always win over fancy music, you know,” Jason said. “My goal is either to enhance her vocal or stay out of the way of it. And I’ve learned a lot of that from her. It’s great to see so much more of America getting to see what I’ve been seeing her do all this time.”