Bubbling Under: 'American Idol's' Colton Dixon 'Never Gone' Debuts
Bubbling Under: 'American Idol's' Colton Dixon 'Never Gone' Debuts

Finishing seventh on last year’s season of “American Idol” hasn’t stopped Colton Dixon from living out his dream. The 22-year-old Tennessee native has carved a niche for himself and is quickly becoming a staple in the Christian rock market.

Dixon recently returned to the “Idol” stage where he debuted his latest single “Love Has Come for Me.” The track is lifted from his debut album, “A Messenger,” released Jan. 29. The set continues to perform well on the sales charts. After nine weeks, it has a peak of No. 15 on The Billboard 200 and is currently in the top 50. Dixon’s previous single “You Are”  is at No. 11 on the Christian Songs chart in its 24th week.

Following the latest “Idol” performance, Billboard.com caught up with Dixon who explained that pursuing the Christian rock path was a natural choice for him.

“I've been listening to Christian music since I was little. I grew up with it,” he said. Dixon added that he loves music with a message and is therefore drawn to Christian rock tunes. “I'm very happy that I was excepted well into that market. You never know…being an “Idol” and going into Christian music – I've seen it work and I've seen it not work. I'm happy that it did.”

Though Dixon is in the midst of promoting his initial release, it hasn’t stopped him from thinking about future songs. “There are endless creative juices going on inside my brain so I’m excited to get that down on paper.” He tells Billboard.com that his new material will be a continuation of the theme of his latest single. “Love and what that means… I think a lot of people look for love in the wrong places at times. So it is about finding the right venue for your love. We’ll see where that idea goes.”

Dixon also touched on the changes he’s experienced in his life since exiting the 'Idol' stage. “A lot has happened in the last year. It's hard for me to wrap my head around a lot of it but I think the coolest thing about all of this is just having people appreciate what you do musically. It’s so cool to put out a record and see people buying it and see people on Twitter and Facebook say ‘Oh, man, I really like this song’ or ‘This song is my favorite.’ Or the best to me is, ‘Man, this song really encourages me in this area."

Before rushing-off again to hit the road with Third Day, the “Idol” alum gave Billboard a behind-the-scenes look at the realities of trekking across the country with his band. “Being on a tour bus is not as glamorous as I thought it would be,” he jokes. “There is no shower, there is no ‘number two,’ but it’s still a lot of fun.”