As I reported earlier today via Twitter (@BAMOK), multi-platinum singer-songwriter and global recording artist Shakira will perform her single “Medicine,” featuring Oklahoma country music superstar Blake Shelton, on the 49th Annual Academy of Country Music Awards, to be broadcast from 7 to 10 p.m. Sunday from the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas on the CBS Television Network.
Shelton, who is co-hosting the ACM Awards with Luke Bryan, and Shakira are both coaches on the hit NBC reality show “The Voice.” He backed her up on “Medicine” for her new album “Shakira.,” her first album in four years.
“She was one of those huge international stars I had only seen from a distance,” Shelton told Billboard about Shakira joining “The Voice,” initially for last year’s fourth season as well as for the show’s current sixth season.
But he and Shakira clicked so well that last year, she approached him for a collaboration.
“I told him I wanted to work with Nashville people,” Shakira told Billboard. “I was a little tired of L.A. I wanted people with another point of view, real people with roots with whom I feel comfortable working in the same room. And I told Blake I wanted to do a song that had the narrative of a country song, that was picturesque, that was a real song. But it also needed to suit me, because after all, I’m Colombian.”
Shakira invited writer Hillary Lindsey and producer Mark Bright – who both have worked with Carrie Underwood, among others – to this very studio, and together they crafted “Medicine,” a country song that’s light enough on fiddle and steel guitar to work on pop radio.
“One thing is for someone like her to say she’s going to do something and another is to do it,” Shelton said. “And I’ll be damned, a month and a half ago she wrote me and said, ‘I wrote the song, and I want you to tell me what you think.’ And I said: ‘Gosh dang, you did exactly what you said you’d do. It sounds like a hit song.’ And then she said, ‘Well, do you want to sing on it?’ I was honored to do it.”
Added Shakira, who had never dabbled in country: “I was so nervous. You have no idea. I was so scared he was going to say, ‘No, Shakira. I love you, but no.’”
Shelton – who has five ACM nominations including Entertainer of the Year – and Shakira join Shelton’s wife, Miranda Lambert, who recently served as Team Shakira’s adviser for “The Voice” Battle Rounds, on the ACM Awards’ star-studded performance lineup. Other previously announced performers include Norman resident Toby Keith, Jason Aldean, Luke Bryan, Eric Church, Brett Eldredge, Hunter Hayes, Justin Moore, Kip Moore, George Strait, Keith Urban, The Band Perry, Florida Georgia Line, and Lady Antebellum with legendary musician Stevie Nicks.
For more information on the ACM Awards and all ACM events, go to www.ACMcountry.com, www.ACMAwards.com, www.facebook.com/AcademyOfCountryMusic or www.Twitter.com/ACMawards. Plus, it’s ACM Awards Week here at BAM’s Blog, so look for daily postings, my Friday ACM Awards preview and then my live coverage Sunday night of the big show.
Preview “Medicine” and check out a previous Blake-Shakira duet here: