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Lizard Eliminated After ‘Sink or Swim’ Experience on ‘The Masked Singer’: ‘I’m Not Used to Losing’

Spoiler alert: This story contains the identity of the contestant eliminated on Wednesday night’s (April 3) episode of The Masked Singer.

The Lizard’s lifespan has been cut short after getting eliminated from The Masked Singer on the competition show’s “Shower Anthems” episode Wednesday night (April 3).

From the beginning of season 11, which kicked off last month, judges Robin Thicke, Jenny McCarthy, Ken Jeong and Rita Ora accurately guessed the smooth-singing Lacertilia’s real name a few times — with Ora in particular revealing she was quite excited at the possibility of the early 2000s R&B icon being the one under the mask. When host Nick Cannon finally removed his scaly green head, Lizard’s true identity was revealed to be someone who embodies a much larger (and fire-breathing) reptile: Sisqó, the “Thong Song” singer who’s embraced the nickname “The Dragon” ever since his solo albums Unleash the Dragon and Return of the Dragon charted in the Billboard 200 top 10 in 1999 and 2001, respectively.

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Though the Dru Hill alum’s energy was high and his riffs plentiful up until the end of his time on the anonymous contest, he admittedly only made it as far as he did by the skin of his two layers of teeth. He wound up in the bottom twice in a row leading up to his final episode, delivering smackdown performances of Billy Joel’s “Movin’ Out” and the Scooby Doo cartoon theme song before he was sent home.

His one regret? Not being able to compare heights with Kevin Hart, who appeared in the Masked season premiere to play a prank on Cannon. “Both of us are short,” Sisqó tells Billboard in a post-elimination interview, laughing. “We was sitting down, so we never got a chance to see who’s taller … I think I got maybe an inch [over him].”

“Being with The Masked Singer was just an awesome experience,” he adds. “I learned a lot, and I’ve been in the entertainment industry now for about 25 years. You kinda get stuck in your ways and you don’t think you can learn anything else, and I was wrong.”

Below, Billboard catches up with Sisqó about making heads or tails of his physically challenging costume, not knowing the words to Billy Joel’s songs and more.

Where did the idea for a lizard costume come from? 

They figured, if I was “The Dragon,” people probably would’ve guessed automatically – even though I think they did guess automatically. I’ve been to Robin’s house before, and Robin and Rita Ora, they’re musicians. They knew my voice immediately.

From what I understood, because my wife is Elizabeth — Liz, Lizard. Also, Busta Rhymes, he was a dragon before.

What was it like to perform in the costume?

When I first put that mask on, man, I think I almost hyperventilated a little bit. The wardrobe people had to put a mini-fan up to the mouth of the costume, just so I could get oxygen in there. Meanwhile, I’m in there pouring sweat, it’s difficult to breathe, I can’t really see.  

Whenever we could [rehearse] in the costume, I wanted to so that I could figure out how I could be as mobile as possible. It had this giant tail, so when somebody would call me, “Lizard!” [Mimes whipping around his tail]. BAM, I’d take out the whole craft services.

How did you push through the physical constraints of the costume? 

It was a real sink or swim moment. I didn’t want to be the one who gave up at the last minute. I just had to basically face my fear in that moment.  

Each show I got a little better. It almost seemed like the lizard was alive, bruh. He had a whole persona of his own, and figuring out how to merge the lizard and The Dragon was the true challenge. 

Some of the judges correctly guessed your identity from the very beginning. How’d you react to that? 

From day one! I was a little flattered, but at the same time, it was like, “Aw, man, I don’t think I’m going to be able to win this because they already know who I am.”  

You were in the bottom two three weeks in a row. What were those smackdown battles like? 

I knew not even one word of Billy Joel’s “Moving Out.” I didn’t know the melody, I didn’t know the words to the song. After that, the words were going, I couldn’t see the prompter, so I just threw caution to the wind and started riffing, singing along without singing actual words. That was the nail in the coffin, ‘cause they knew exactly who I was then. 

I’m not used to losing things. I was so arrogant. [Laughs.] I heard everybody else sing in rehearsal. I was under the impression that this was only a singing contest, so I was like, ‘Well if it’s a singing contest, I’m about to sing these people under the …” 

What were your favorite clues Masked Singer used to hint at your identity in the teaser videos? 

What I really enjoyed was how they put things together from my life. Like, when they were talking about my son, I was like, putting an egg to bed and kissing it goodnight. Then there was a female lizard, who I guess was supposed to represent my wife. 

They said something about Billboard … but they made it seem like it was an actual billboard instead of the Billboard charts. That was funny, because I hosted the Billboard Awards, I believe it was 2001. 

Did you tell your family you were going on the show? 

My family are big fans of the show. Ken Jeong, it seems once a season, he asks [a contestant] if they’re me.  

Because my family is so tight-knit, they knew I was doing a TV show. But I didn’t tell anybody that I was the Lizard. These kids are smart. After a while they just started going through the DVR and picking shows and asking, “Is this the show?” 

[I told them] look, I’m not gonna say anything. What I will say is if you see me and Mommy sitting together watching TV, then just come in there and watch it with us.

What’s next for you? 

Be looking out for new music from The Dragon. It’s actually part two in a three-part series I’m doing. The first album is called Genesis. The second one that I’m working on right now is called Exodus and the next one will be Revelations. Look out for a snippet really soon. 

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