LOS ANGELES (AP) -- "American Idol" finalist Danny Gokey says he hopes viewers aren't weary of hearing of his personal tragedy, the death of his wife.

Gokey, 28, whose wife, Sophia, had a congenital heart defect and died seven months ago, said Thursday that her loss weighs on his mind and he's asked about it often. But he said he doesn't "throw it in people's faces."

The Milwaukee church-music director took part in a teleconference with fellow finalists Alexis Grace, 21, of Memphis, Tenn., and Michael Saver, 27, of Jasper, Texas. They were the first to be picked by viewers for the Fox TV show's top 12.

The rest of the field will be chosen out of the remaining 24 contestants.