John Legend on his 'Duets' strategy and song choices - See video
John Legend was a late addition to "Duets" as a mentor/competitor. The 33-year-old singer stepped in for Lionel Richie in April and told OnTheRedCarpet.com in a recent interview that he quickly realized how different the show was from his previous television experience.
"I've guested on a bunch of TV shows and performed on a bunch of talk shows, but it's different when you're in there entertaining folks every week. It's definitely a different feel," he said. "I'm used to being on stage, I'm used to touring the country, touring the world, but this definitely has a different feel."
Legend is joined on the series by Kelly Clarkson, Jennifer Nettles and Robin Thicke. The four will search the country for two singers who will be their duet partners. Every week, the celebrity and one of their artists will perform in front of a live studio audience.
At the end of the competition, the winning partner will receive a recording contract with Hollywood Records. The singer says he's "invested" in his contestants for the show, 37-year-old Johnny Gray from Shoreline, Washington and 34-year-old Bridget Carrington from Farmville, Virginia.
"I'm so invested in them, you know I came to the show kind of right near the end of pre-production and I was picking singers and by the time I picked them we were about to perform the first show and so it happened really fast," he explained. "I fell in love with both of them as far as making sure they would be successful and making sure they would be the best that they could be. It was like really important to me that they be successful."
Although Legend wants his contestants to succeed; he doesn't want it to come at a cost.
"We try to teach them as much as we can but a lot of it, I don't want to put too much pressure on them," he said. "'I want them to feel comfortable when they're out here and so I try not to fill their head with too much information at once, I just want them to focus on putting on a great performance every night. "
The singer admits there's a lot of factors he has to consider when picking songs for the competition and talked a nit about his strategy.
"There's a few different considerations, but hopefully we keep picking the right repertoire so it gives the singers the best opportunity to shine and it's something that will entertain the crowd really well too," Legend said.
Legend is known for hits like "Used to Love U," "Ordinary People" and "Save Room." "Duets" premieres on Thursday, May 24, at 8 p.m.