With The Voice‘s success in its sophomore season, the arrival of The X Factor in the U.S. and the continued longevity of American Idol, reality singing competitions are all the rage right now. ABC has decided to throw its hat in the ring with its newest show Duets, which features four “Superstars” who search the country for the best undiscovered talent to join them on stage in a series of live duets. Initially, those celebrities were Robin Thicke, Jennifer Nettles, Kelly Clarkson and Lionel Richie – but the network announced yesterday that Richie is being replaced by nine-time Grammy Award winner John Legend.

According to EW, Richie had to drop out of the series due to “personal scheduling conflicts.” Legend, however, says he’s “thrilled” to be a part of Duets and is “looking forward to finding an undiscovered gem out there.” Some seem to think the oh-so-smooth crooner fits in better than the legendary Richie with the other Superstars, who seem to come from a younger, more contemporary musical background.

The four Superstars will individually travel America to each select two singers to be their duet partners. After choosing their contestants, they will perform live onstage with their selected finalists, and the protege from the most successful duet will win a recording contract with Hollywood Records. Duets will be hosted by Quddus (of Total Request Live) and will premiere on Thursday, May 24 on ABC.

To watch a promo spoofing American Idol (Kelly Clarkson’s claim to fame) for the show, check out the video below (courtesy of US Weekly):

(Image courtesy of WENN)

Jenn Lee

Staff Writer, BuddyTV

Jenn grew up in Ohio before moving to Seoul, Korea, where she attended international school and failed to learn Korean. From there she went on to earn a BA in Psychology from the University of Pennsylvania before settling in Seattle, where she now spends too much time pondering the power of narrative in TV shows and novels. While she loves a good smart comedy (a la Community or Parks and Recreation), her favorite current show is Breaking Bad; all-time mentions include Arrested DevelopmentLost and Friends. When she’s not consuming television or literature, she’s savoring pastries and searching for the city’s ultimate sandwich.