Evil Jason Explains His Performance: Castro Swears He Didn't Sandbag American Idol
In his obligatory exit interview Thursday, fallen American Idol contestant Jason Castro told reporters he didn't intentionally sabotage his performance Tuesday night -- despite forgetting the words to a classic Bob Dylan song and online rumors he mouthed the words "don't vote" during the show.
"Yesterday, I wanted to win and the day before," Castro told journalists during a telephone press conference Thursday. "What it came down to is just my inexperience...Once we doubled up on songs, I wasn't really being able to focus. And both my songs we just -- my mind was split, and I just couldn't deliver either/or, and so I think that's what it came down to."
Castro admitted that when he auditioned for Idol, he had only performed live in something like five shows, none lasting longer than 30 minutes. That's a marked difference from the resume of competitors such as Sarasota native Syesha Mercado, who has been singing publicly since she was a child and even appeared on a previous reality TV talent competition, ABC-TV's short-lived The One.
"I'd never even learned a song all the way through, and now trying to learn two in a week has been tough," said Castro, who some critics -- okay, me -- dubbed The New Sanjaya for his obvious lack of vocal skill and performing ability. Still, the singer said he actually told viewers to "Vote" twice during the show, and it just looked like he said "Don't vote."
"I was really starting to fear the week ahead, if I made it," he said. "How was I going to do three songs? I can't even do two right, and with the hometown visit, it was just going to be a lot of work, even though it would have been so much fun....My natural reaction, I just really felt relieved, like the pressure was off."
So the question remains: does it help Idol's reputation that such an inexperienced performer washed out before the final three, or hurt the show that he made it far as he did?