Lionel Richie is out, John Legend is in and it's really hard not to make a "Hello" joke.

ABC has decided to bring in nine-time Grammy Award winner Legend to replace Richie  whose "personal scheduling conflicts" forced him to pull out of the summer singing competition, 'Duets.'

"I'm thrilled to be part of 'Duets' and I’m looking forward to finding an undiscovered gem out there. This is going be a lot of fun,' said Legend, who joins Kelly Clarkson, Jennifer Nettles and Robin Thicke on a nationwide search for duet partners.

The move is surprising, considering Richie's appearance in a promo and recent interview with the Fox News website, in which the singer talks about getting help from daughter and reality TV vet, Nicole Richie, in preparing for the show, which premieres May 24th at 8PM ET.

Why exactly Richie decided to bow out at such a late hour remains a mystery but the acclaimed singer-songwriter-actor is certainly a worthy replacement.