“American Idol” judge Lionel Richie coaching Luke Bryan at the piano is absolutely everything Twitter/@LionelRichie

Luke Bryan is a country singer from Georgia. Lionel Richie is soul and pop singer from Alabama, and Katy Perry pop star from California. While it sounds like this trio of “American Idol” judges might not have a whole lot in common, they actually have a truckload. They’re all successful in their respective genres, they’re all prolific, accomplished songwriters, and they also all have a great deal of respect for what the others do.

They also seem to genuinely enjoy each other’s company. So much so that during downtime on the “Idol” set, they don’t run off to dressing rooms, trailers or tour buses. They just hang out.

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And we all know what happens when a bunch of musicians hang out, don’t we?

Music happens.

During a backstage break in the action, Luke and Lionel (hmmmmm … that sounds like an album title, right?) posted up at one of the set’s pianos and, while we can’t tell who started this impromptu duet of the Commodores’ hit single, “Sail On,” which Lionel wrote, we can tell you it finished us!


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But one of the coolest things is that after they finish the song, Luke begins picking Lionel’s brain on jazz progressions, and their song turns into a music lesson, one superstar sharing with another superstar. No ego. No showboating. Just humility and love of music.

Wait a second. Could Luke be setting Lionel up to do another volume of his popular “Tuskegee” album that featured the former Commodore performing his big hits with country stars? Luke wasn’t available to record with Lionel for that project, and you can tell he would have if he could have. His pals Jason Aldean and Blake Shelton did, and Tim McGraw is the duet partner on “Sail On,” so …


Again, “Luke and Lionel” sounds like a great album title!

Based in Nashville, Tammy is a 20-year veteran of the country music community. She has worked in marketing, PR and artist development. Follow her @TammyGooGoo and join the conversation @RareCountry
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