Kate Ward
March 10, 2009 AT 12:00 PM EDT

Yesterday, American Idol announced Carrie Underwood would be singing ousted season 8 contestants goodbye with a cover of Motley Crue’s “Home Sweet Home,” a ballad off the band’s 1985 album Theatre of Pain. And by the sound of a preview of the song — the full version will be available exclusively on iTunes through March 16 before expanding to other retailers — I’d say our season 4 champ has found herself another hit (but then again, that girl could turn the Reading Rainbow theme song into a hit). And even if you’re a Motley Crue purist, you have to admit that the song easily trumps last year’s incredibly weak exit ditty, “Celebrate Me Home,” by velvet teddy bear Ruben Studdard.

But how does it compare to Idol‘s other two exit songs, Daughtry’s “Home” and Daniel Powter’s “Bad Day”? I’d say it’s hard to beat Powter’s song, which — love it or hate it — is an undeniable catchy hit. And though I’m glad to see that Idol producers are staying faithful to previous champs or Idol standouts, I kind of wish they would choose another unknown like Powter to shoot to stardom, thanks to the exit song. Kind of fits in with the theme of the show, doesn’t it?

What do you guys think of Carrie’s cover? Do you think another song — like, say, Daughtry’s “Long Way” — should have made the cut instead? And do you, like me, wish Idol would choose an unknown, small-time artist to sing the goodbye song again (and no, I’m not referring to Taylor Hicks)?

addCredit(“Carrie Underwood: Kevin Mazur/WireImage.com; Motley Crue: Paul Natkin/WireImage.com”)

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