"I remember on one episode this season of American Idol, Simon insulted a performer by saying, "You sound like you should be singing on a cruise ship."
That is funny. On the HBO series, Larry Sanders, his sidekick (who is a buffoon) always cites his years as a "cruise director" as the way he honed his audience skills, which always gives Garry Shandling a chance to roll his eyes.
The truth is that for several years a cruise show singer was picked for their dancing skills more than their voice. They also needed people who would agree to call bingo, sit in the library a few hours a day, leave home for 6 months and work for a few hundred dollars a week.
These days, however, the bigger cruise ships have started hiring "singing leads" with dancers who can sing to back them up. Those shows also usually have a pas de deux dance team to lead the dancers as well.
Not on all ships, however. The truth is, you can hear some pretty bad voices from so-called "professional singers" in cruise ship production shows.