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Top 10 Worst Song Duets

VO: Matt Campbell
Script written by Matthew Manouli Some duets are a hit, and some... well you be the judge. Welcome to, and today we'll be counting down the Top 10 Worst Song Duets. For this list, we'll be looking at duets which seem interesting on paper, but were not quite executed as well as we hoped. While there have been some truly awful live performance duets, this list is only dealing with studio releases. Special thanks to our user Emmanuel Dunk for suggesting this idea, check out the voting page at WatchMojo.comsuggest/Top+10+Worst+Song+Duets

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Top 10 Worst Song Duets

Some duets are a hit, and some... well you be the judge. Welcome to, and today we'll be counting down the Top 10 Worst Song Duets.
For this list, we'll be looking at duets which seem interesting on paper, but were not quite executed as well as we hoped. While there have been some truly awful live performance duets, this list is only dealing with studio releases.

#10: “I've Got You Under My Skin” (1993)
Frank Sinatra and Bono

This jazzy, swing song starts off great as you listen to the soothing crooning of Frank Sinatra, but you're soon greeted with the faint whispers of U2's Bono. The parts where the two artists sing in tandem are particularly disappointing, especially when the U2 front man attempts to add harmonies. Even after a quick listen it's evident there is a lack of chemistry between them and this is most likely because they were never in the studio at the same time, a demand made by ol' Blue Eyes in exchange for his participation in the project. If you're looking for a better version of the song, opt for one sung by Sinatra himself.

#9: “Cruisin'” (2000)
Huey Lewis and Gwyneth Paltrow

This cheesy cover of the Smokey Robinson song was sung for the aptly named movie Duets, and it may have gotten a pass on those grounds if producers didn't decide to make it a commercial single. The film contains a ton of song covers, as the main theme revolved around a road trip with a karaoke competition as the destination. While the song topped the charts in Australia and New Zealand, it did, somehow, also top the Adult Contemporary chart. The duet was an attempt to revitalize Huey Lewis' career, and give Paltrow the actress the stepping stone to becoming Paltrow the singer, but sadly after this song, she stopped making music for years, and Huey Lewis well... still no News there.

#8: “Chillin' With You” (2013)
Britney Spears and Jamie Lynn Spears

It's Britney bitch… and this time she’s decided to keep it in the family. Her duet with younger sister Jamie Lynn Spears is an ode to their sisterly love and appreciation for one another, but it's clear another genre would have suited this song better. It goes from a slight country beat, to EDM, to pop, and leaves the whole song disjointed. If you want a better Jamie Lynn performance, there's more out there that go with her style, and are, frankly far more enjoyable to listen to. It's a cute song- at times- but you can't help but cringe every time Britney says “wichu”.

#7: “Ebony and Ivory” (1982)
Paul McCartney and Stevie Wonder

This uplifting tune uses black and white piano keys as a metaphor for racial harmony. Panned by critics as being too simplistic, it's possible the bar was set too high for these two musical icons, but it's doubtful the song would have worked with any other two artists either. The song might be bland and overly optimistic, offering no solutions to inequality, but the video is somehow worse. Ironically, McCartney and Wonder didn't even film it together and were instead placed together through editing. Talk about harmony! In fact the most fascinating thing about this soft-weight social pandering is that it managed to get banned in apartheid South Africa, so perhaps its message was at least effective on notorious 80's racists. 

#6: “Changes” (2003)
Kelly Osbourne and Ozzy Osbourne

No one expected this from the Prince of Darkness... but then again no one expected this either. Originally recorded by Ozzy during his time in Black Sabbath, the song was inspired by drummer Billy Ward's separation from his wife. A mere 30 years later, Ozzy and daughter Kelly Osbourne decided to tarnish the original memory of the song, changing the lyrics to be about a father and daughter drifting apart. The track was made for the re-release of Kelly's debut album. The album, like the duet, split the room almost instantly, and, along with their reality series, are seen by many fans as the Osbournes' last grasp to stay in the limelight.

#5: “Whatzupwitu” (1993)
Eddie Murphy and Michael Jackson

This is what happens when comedians delve into serious music. Thankfully, along with “Party All the Time”, these are the only songs that haven't been left buried in the years when Murphy was making music. Michael Jackson is only the featured artist on the song, but even with uninspired lyrics, he steals the show. While Murphy conveys the deeper message of the tune, how human beings need the planet, not vice versa, it is overshadowed by MJ's catchy, yet meaningless chorus. The music video was also panned by critics as non-sensical and cheap. Well, at least the Harlem Boys' Choir got to say they met two entertainment icons...

#4: “Pretty Girls” (2015)
Britney Spears and Iggy Azalea

Britney Spears makes this list yet again, but this time with Australian rapper Iggy Azalea, in this heavily auto-tuned electro-hop tune. The lyrics are overtly saying that girls the world over get what they want based on their appearance, and was considered offensive to both the pretty and less than pretty. The implication that you can only make it if you have a certain look, and that if you don't you will be miserable is terrible for a young girl's psyche. Meanwhile music critics were torn over the track, with some calling it the Song of the Summer, and others calling it a rehash of Azalea’s “Fancy”.

#3: “Our Lips Are Sealed” (2004)
Hillary Duff and Haylie Duff

In yet another duet sung by family members, we find sisters Hilary and Haylie Duff in what seems to be a tune aimed at 9 year olds. Made for Hilary's movie, A Cinderella Story, the song was chosen for its secretive theme, mimicking the film. It was originally released by the Go-Go's in 1981 as a power pop, new wave song, with band members each playing their own instruments, a far cry from Hilary and Haylie's overproduced track. While Hilary had somewhat of a prior singing career, the addition of her sister with even less of a musical background should have raised red flags.

#2: “Accidental Racist” (2013)
Brad Paisley and LL Cool J

With a title like that, you know this can't be good. This duet makes “Ebony and Ivory” look like it solved racism. It's easy to take LL Cool J's inclusion as a sign of good intentions, but intentions aside, the track fails on multiple fronts. Paisley's lyrics are borderline offensive, asking for an apology for slavery, something no one was holding Paisley responsible for. Cool J's verses are somehow even more egregious, comparing waving a Confederate flag, a traitorous symbol of secession from states that wanted to continue slavery, with a doo rag... which is something that keeps sweat out of your eyes. From that, to implying society should just forget about slavery, pretty much everything on this track is offensive, and should be considered an accidental release.
Before we unveil our top pick, here are a few honorable mentions:
“Up Out My Face” (2010)
Mariah Carey and Nicki Minaj
“Yah Mo B There” (1983)
James Ingram and Michael McDonald 

#1: “Sweet Lovin' Friends” (1984)
Dolly Parton and Sylvester Stallone

This is shocking, but yes, the same badass who lost to Creed and single handily re-fought the Vietnam War, made this. The duet appeared on the soundtrack for the 1984 film Rhinestone, a movie that Stallone has stated was the only film he wishes he'd never made. The song feels like an attempt at tapping into the fun of a Loretta Lynn-Conway Twitty duet except that there is very little chemistry between Parton and Sly. There's little wonder to how this track was nominated for a Razzie for Worst Original Song in 1984. Stallone didn't go home empty handed though, as “Sweet Lovin' Friends” lost out to his other musical offering, “Drinkenstein”. The general consensus is that both “Sweet Lovin Friends”, and the movie Rhinestone itself never be mentioned again. Deal?

Do you agree with our list? What are some other terrible duets? For more incompatible Top 10s published everyday, be sure to subscribe to

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