LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Ousted "American Idol" contestant Colton Dixon said on Friday that his performance of Lady Gaga's hit "Bad Romance" had likely turned off voters who shared his Christian beliefs.
Dixon, 20, from Tennessee, said he was still in shock over being booted off the TV contest, describing Thursday night's elimination as a bad dream, to reporters on a conference call.
"By choosing 'Bad Romance' I think I turned off a lot of my core voters," he said. "It was a bad risk to take because I didn't really think it through. I think musically, performance wise..I was happy the way it turned out. But the message that was portrayed wasn't really who I was.
"I overlooked that this week and I lost sight of what I normally think of first. I think that is the main reason why I am talking to you right now," he said.
The "Idol" judges also disliked Dixon's performance, and showed little enthusiasm for his second song - a stripped-down piano version of the Earth Wind and Fire hit "September."
The combination put the popular singer in the bottom three for the first time after public votes were counted.
"I had a feeling I was in bottom three, " Dixon said on Friday. "It all happened so fast and since I had never been in the bottom I didn't fully understand what was going on and even this morning when I woke up, I was like 'oh wait, that wasn't a bad dream last night'."
But Dixon said he hoped to forge a career singing Christian music and spreading his faith, planning to make an album.
"I am so thankful for the 'Idol' platform and I was able to reach so many more people in the Christian market...It's about ministry for me," he said.
Dixon's exit leaves six contestants in the running for the "American Idol" title and a recording contract. Next week, they will perform songs from the Queen songbook, and sing a medley with original band members Brian May and Roger Taylor.
(Reporting By Jill Serjeant; Editing by Piya Sinha-Roy)