A few moments into his duet of ‘You Are’ with Blake Shelton at the 2012 ACM Awards, Lionel Richie sort of smiled, shook his head and recognized the strangeness of two grown, heterosexual men singing the love ballad together. Then he kept singing, turning in a fine topper to an enjoyable — albeit tame — country awards show.

The performance was another reminder to fans that ‘Lionel Richie and Friends — In Concert’ is taping on Monday and airing on CBS on April 13. Shelton and Richie recorded the cut for Richie’s new ‘Tuskegee’ album, which was released last Tuesday. It’s one of the stand-out tracks on the album, and this performance worked because both men are so much fun to watch on stage.

Richie is a ball of energy, while Shelton is more static on stage. They contrast each other nicely, and the country singer has enough respect for the famous songwriter to reach for the top of his abilities even after learning he wouldn’t be taking home the Entertainer of the Year award. They were under no time constraints, as it was clear the show would run out while they played.

Shelton won’t be going home empty handed, however. He did win Male Vocalist of the Year, and his wife won Female Vocalist of the Year in addition to Album of the Year. No artist dominated the awards show, but combined with their memorable performances and stage antics, the Sheltons will have more people chatting tomorrow than any other act.

Watch Blake Shelton and Lionel Richie Perform ‘You Are’ at the ACMs

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