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Little Big Town, Lionel Richie Duet Achieves Perfect Harmony

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Little Big Town are one of the fortunate acts on ‘Tuskegee,’ Lionel Richie‘s just-released album of country duet versions of his classic hits. But while the foursome are all thrilled to be featured on the project, the decision to collaborate with the music icon was made by only one LBT member, Kimberly Schlapman.

“I saw [producer] Tony [Brown] and he really wanted us to be a part of the record,” Kimberly recalls. “I was like, ‘Oh yeah, heck yeah, we will! I’ll go beat them in to submission if I need to!'”

Turns out, no physical violence was necessary, and her fellow bandmates, Karen Fairchild, Jimi Westbrook and Phillip Sweet, all happily complied. “We were all really interested and it was just a matter if we could work it out, schedule-wise, and what song would we do,” Kimberly notes.

The quartet sang ‘Deep River Woman’ with the former Commodores frontman, which was an ideal fit for their tight harmonies. Lionel previously recorded the tune on his 1986 album, ‘Dancing on the Ceiling,’ with another quartet, Alabama.

“I think we got to do the perfect song in his whole catalog,” says Kimberly. “When we got in the studio with him, he was so generous with us and kind and genuine and was so complimentary of our sound, and then he opens his voice and it’s that voice that takes you back to junior high school.”

The platinum-selling group admit they were a bit starstruck to be in the studio with the legend. “He does those signature things that only his voice can do,” Phillip explains. “He sounds so good, he’s only gotten better.”

Little Big Town performed ‘Deep River Woman’ yesterday (March 27) on NBC’s ‘Today‘ show. (Watch the video below.) They can next be found at the ACM Awards on Sunday (April 1), where they will perform ‘Here’s Hope,’ written by Hunter Hayes. The song is part of the Child Hunger Ends Here campaign, which aims to bring awareness of childhood hunger in America.

The ACM Awards will air live from the MGM Grand Garden Arena at 8:00 PM ET on CBS.

Watch Lionel and LBT Perform on ‘Today’

Watch ‘The Life and Career of Lionel Richie’

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Download Lionel Richie Songs | ‘Buy ‘Tuskegee

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