John Legend (Superstar)
Who He Is: R&B singer-songwriter and piano player Legend has released four solo albums and a 2010 collaboration with the Roots, Wake Up!, scoring nine Grammy awards along the way.
Reality Show Cred: None, but Legend has experience nurturing new talent with his label, Homeschool Records, a joint venture with Atlantic. His first signing was "American Boy" singer Estelle.
Lucky Call: "[Lionel] Richie was supposed to do it, and then he wasn't able to, and they called me. I got a call from my manager saying, 'Sit down because we've got a lot to talk about.' We decided pretty much right then that we thought that it was a good idea to do it. And here we are. I'm happy to be on the show. I'm having a lot of fun."
One Direction: "We looked at YouTube videos [to pick my singer]. We did an open call audition for my second partner. Then we did a call back where we dueted with them, and a more extensive audition to see if we could really work together. Part of it was me seeing how quickly they could learn something if I taught them, and how responsive they are to musical direction. This is a high-pressure environment. I want them to be able to operate in it."
Words to Live By: "It's going to be a great experience regardless of who wins, but this would be a taking off point for [my contestants] to have a career in music, regardless if they win or not."