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In theory, Nicole Scherzinger has everything it takes to be the world's biggest popstar. She's undeniably stunning, has a versatile voice that can belt out Whitney just as well as it can lilt over opera or spit out raps, is well known for her provocative dance skills and judging by the sheer volume of reality shows she appears on seems to have a strong work ethic. And yet since her start in the entertainment industry back in 1999, it seems as though Nicole has suffered through setback after setback. From the short-lived girl groups Eden's Crush and The Pussycat Dolls; to the three different attempts at a debut solo album; to the continuous record label contracts signed, scrapped and switched, it seems as though the stars have never quite aligned for her.
And yet, Scherzinger seems to be one of those people who has a good name in the industry; for try as they might, she just won't seem to go away. Whether she's popping up on one of her many editions of The X Factor, filling in as musical talent on Neil Patrick Harris's variety show or cameoing in Men In Black, Nicole always finds a way to maintain her public presence even when her record label fails her - and apparently, it does so regularly.
For since she's debuted as a solo artist, Scherzy has had at least six hits that we know of that she or her label have let slip through her fingers. Whether she was simply too "busy" to record them, was suffering from endless album delays thanks to her label or because she had crises with her public image, Nicole has regularly passed on tracks only to have them go on to be successful releases at the hands of other artists.
Check our list after the jump to see just what we could be missing out on! And keep in mind that excluded from this list are all the hits Nicole could have had if she'd joined The Black Eyed Peas - it goes without saying that her versions of 'My Humps' or 'I Gotta Feeling' would have been amazing.
6. Lady Gaga - Just Dance (Feat. Colby O'Donis)
Nicole and Lady Gaga were often linked both through their involvement with Interscope Records and their ongoing work with RedOne, with Gaga even opening for the Pussycat Dolls on their Doll Domination Tour in 2009. But Gaga might not have even made it that far had it not been for the success of her lead single 'Just Dance' which propelled her into worldwide superstardom. Weirdly, the song was originally offered to Nicole and the rest of the Dolls back when it was first written, but was turned down for unknown reasons. While we're sure the Dolls could have slayed the track, the possibility of a Gaga-less world is just too much for us to deal with.
5. Jennifer Lopez - On The Floor (Feat. Pitbull)
This one was never officially confirmed by Scherzy herself, but around the time 'On The Floor' was released it was rumoured that it had originally been recorded as a demo by Nicole - not a totally crazy piece of gossip given how regularly she was working with producer RedOne around that time. In a weird twist, it was later rumoured that J. Lo had recorded a version of Nicole's single 'Right There', but that an issue with gaining the rights of the song had stopped her from releasing the track at the last minute. While we can't 100% vouch for the veracity of this missed opportunity, it's safe to say that Nicole could have slayed 'On The Floor' and nailed the chemistry between herself and Pitbull.
4. Christina Aguilera - The Beautiful People (From Burlesque)
One song you may not have heard of is Christina Aguilera's 'The Beautiful People', a track recorded for the soundtrack to her film Burlesque back in 2010. The song itself was never released as a single, but it's accompanying soundtrack album did manage to hit #18 on the Hot 100 and #1 on the Soundtrack Albums chart, constituting a minor success. Nicole recorded her own version of the song for her debut album which later leaked, but like the rest of that album, it ultimately remained unreleased. It's not all bad, though: Nicole ended up with writing credits on the finished version of the song (along with Ester Dean and Marilyn Manson thanks to a sample oddity), so she at least would have made some coin every time the movie played in theatres or on TV.
3. Dave Audé - I'm Gonna (Feat. J Sutta)
'I'm Gonna' is a cover version of 'I'm Gonna Get You', a 1992 track released by Bizarre Inc alongside vocalist Angie Brown. Nicole recorded her version of the track in 2011 alongside DJ and producer Dave Audé, but the song was never officially released. In a strange turn of events, Audé later reworked his production of the track for release with Nicole's former Pussycat Dolls bandmate J Sutta (known during her time in the group as Jessica). While the song was hardly a commercial success, it did hit #1 on the Hot Dance Club Songs; an ironic feat given that during her time in the group Sutta often played second fiddle to Scherzinger, who later in her career was struggling to even get her album released while Sutta scored #1 hits.
2. Gnarls Barkley - Crazy
Possibly the strangest of all the songs Scherzinger has turned down, 'Crazy' was the Gnarls Barkley song which won a Grammy Award in 2007 and which was at one point so successful and overplayed that the band decided to remove the single from music stores so that people would "remember the song fondly and not get sick of it." Nicole was offered the song during sessions with Cee-Lo which also spawned 'Don't Cha', but refused the song for unknown reasons. While the song was a huge hit at Gnarls Barkley's hands, we have to wonder whether a Nicole version would have been as successful: it doesn't quite fit her sex kitten image and we're not quite sure she could pull off the mysterious persona that made the song popular.
1. Rihanna - We Found Love (Feat. Calvin Harris)
In an interview with Notion magazine, Nicole confessed the most sinful of all sins: that she'd passed on one of the biggest songs of 2011 and an iconic hit for Rihanna, the Calvin Harris produced 'We Found Love'. "I've got the demo of that song and I was busy at the time [it was sent to me]", she mentioned in the interview. "They'd sent me a few dance tracks and I wasn't able to get to them and I was like, 'Oh there's so much dance and I want to take a break from it.' That was my fault. I slept on it." Of course, she's not entirely alone with her regrets on passing on the track - fellow The X Factor UK star Leona Lewis can keep her company, after she scrapped her recorded version of the song due to a desire to release her Avicii collaboration 'Collide' as the lead single from her Glassheart album instead. It's a shame given just how badly both of these girls needed the hit.
Which of these songs do you think Nicole would have slayed the most? Would they even have been as successful if she'd released them as singles? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below!