Tonight's American Music Awards promised surprise collaborations and Katy Perry delivered. Earlier today, she announced that she would be performing "Only Love" for the first time live — but it would be a duet with country star and Hootie & the Blowfish frontman Darius Rucker. She also added that she would be dedicating the special performance to her father.
The pared-down performance included Perry wearing a Canadian tuxedo and zero frills, fuss, special effects or over-the-top theatricality. Basically, it was the exact opposite of a normal Katy Perry awards show appearance.
"Tonight's @amas performance is for my father," Perry shared on Instagram alongside a sweet baby photo.
Rucker also shared the news on his Twitter account, announcing the performance to his own fans and followers.
"Excited to share that I’ll be joining @KatyPerry for a special performance of #OnlyLove on the @AMAs, TONIGHT at 8/7c on ABC!" he wrote.
For anyone scratching their head over the collaboration, fans could be prepping for a new Katy Perry. Like the transformations before (think: "I Kissed a Girl" turned "California Gurls" to pregnant "Never Worn White" and fresh, boho "Daisies"), it could mark a new moment in her music. She gave fans the impression that she'd be ditching her Technicolor, poppy, Left Shark-filled past for something more grown-up, calling herself "Katheryn" in a follow-up tweet. Perry's birth name is Katheryn Elizabeth Hudson.
"Went back to church, met a new friend @dariusrucker and found #OnlyLove," she wrote. "Tune in for Katheryn on the @AMAs tonight at 8/7c on @abcnetwork
Could Perry be taking a book out of Lady Gaga's Joanne era, minus the coordinated cowboy-hat looks? Fans should be used to Perry's shape-shifting, but this could be her most drastic shift yet.
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