We've already been anticipating Lionel Richie's upcoming TV special, 'ACM Presents: Lionel Richie and Friends -- A Lifetime of Hits,' and now we have several more reasons to look forward to the show. The music icon has added several country music celebs to the April 2 event, guaranteeing it will be a night to remember.

Luke Bryan, Sara Evans, Tim McGraw and Sugarland's Jennifer Nettles are the latest additions to the star-studded night's roster. They will join previously-announced singers Jason Aldean, the Band Perry, Lady Antebellum, Kenny Chesney, Martina McBride, Rascal Flatts and Kenny Rogers, who will all take the stage to perform some of Lionel's most-beloved hits.

The annual TV show is part of the festivities surrounding the ACM Awards. 'ACM Presents: Lionel Richie and Friends -- A Lifetime of Hits' will tape the day after the awards ceremony, and air on CBS at a later date.

Lionel's appearance as part of the ACM Awards festivities will fall only a few days after the release of his new album, 'Tuskegee,' which includes several country artists performing duets with the music icon. Included on the CD, which is scheduled for a March 27 release, is Blake Shelton, Willie Nelson, Darius Rucker and Shania Twain, among others.

The rock music legend insists it is a natural fit for him to collaborate with the country music community. "I grew up with the Grand Ole Opry, Dottie West, Conway Twitty, Buck Owens ... not realizing it was influencing me as much as it was," he explains to The Boot. "By growing up in Alabama, I had a melting pot of the whole pie: R&B, gospel, country. And not just outside of town, but right through the airwaves of my city. So when I started writing, songs like 'Stuck on You' and 'Easy [Like Sunday Morning]' were actually country, but I didn't even realize that was my influence. Now, years later making this album, I didn't realize that so many of my country artist friends use those songs as the template for their lives."

The 47th annual Academy of Country Music Awards, which has Blake Shelton and Reba McEntire returning as co-hosts, will air live from Las Vegas on April 1 at 8:00 PM ET.

Watch Lionel Richie & Shania Twain Behind-the-Scenes




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