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R. Kelly drove cross-country for 10 minute stage appearance with Phoenix

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Jun 04, 2013 | 1:41pm EDT

R&B star R. Kelly spent three days driving across America to join French rockers Phoenix onstage for just 10 minutes at California's Coachella festival in April (13). Frontman Thomas Mars reveals they invited the Chicago, Illinois native to perform with them during their headline set on the first weekend of the annual event and discussed track ideas via phone and email - but they didn't get to rehearse or meet the star beforehand because the I Believe I Can Fly hitmaker doesn't like to use air travel. Mars tells British radio station Xfm, "We met him onstage actually... He didn't come before (the show); he doesn't fly. So he drove from Chicago to Palm Springs, three days. Spent 10 minutes on stage, then drove back three days. That was cool..." The collaboration, a mash-up of Kelly's 2003 single Ignition (Remix) with Phoenix's hit 1901, was a "very brief moment of pure joy" for the rockers, although they didn't get the chance to express their thanks to the singer in person after the show. Mars adds, "He disappeared (after the set) and I guess drove back. Which is a commitment. For someone to commit six days of their life for 10 minutes on stage, and what a 10 minutes they were. He's working all the time I guess; he has something crazy in his big bus studio. You could feel it was easy for him, it was natural."

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