updated 05/01/2014 AT 9:00 AM ET
•originally published 05/01/2014 AT 1:50 PM ET
In a week when viewers made the song choices for the singers, Caleb Johnson made no secret of his distaste for the Aerosmith track he was given.
“I hate that song,” Johnson told PEOPLE frankly Wednesday after his performance of “I Don’t Want to Miss a Thing.” “I don’t know why [America chose it]. I guess it was because it was a rock ballad.”
Still, Johnson chose to smile through his performance, and did an adequate – if not particularly passionate – job.
“I kind of thought, ‘I’ll just do the best I can and get through it as best as possible and try and make it as believable as possible,’ ” he told reporters. “It was dramatic and had all the candles behind me, so I really like that aspect. But other than that, I hated that song.”
Johnson is a little worried, though, that his lack of passion for the song could hurt him in the voting.
“Thank God I had the other song,” he said of getting to perform Whitesnake’s “Still of the Night” later in the evening. “If not, I would be going home.”