Keys is presenting the Motown legend with the show’s Icon Award and then will be joining him on stage to perform some of his biggest hits. No word yet on what songs they’ll be doing together.
Of course, this isn’t the first time they’ve shared the stage. At the 2004 MTV Video Music Awards, they performed Wonder’s “Higher Ground” and two years later presented together at the 48th Grammy Awards. More recently, the two performed at Whitney Houston’s funeral, taking on separate songs in tribute to the late singer.
Along with Stevie, Keys lists Houston as one of her biggest influences. The “Fallin'” singer, who wrote the song “Million Dollar Bill,” for Houston’s 2009 album I Look to You, told the Hollywood Reporter that she and the diva were like “sisters.” While Keys was pregnant last year with her son, Egypt, the two had sleepovers and “hung out like girls.”
The Billboard Awards will also be honoring Houston and her career by posthumously bestowing upon her the Millenium Award. The late singer’s daughter, Bobbi Kristina will be on hand to accept the award while John Legend and Jordin Sparks will perform.
Kelly Clarkson, Carrie Underwood, Cee Lo Green, Nelly Furtado and Katy Perry, debuting her new song “Wide Awake,” are all scheduled to take the stage Sunday night as well.
–Shannon Carlin, CBS Local