Lionel Richie: Michael Jackson Hologram Freaked Me Out! (Exclusive)

The Michael Jackson hologram performance during Sunday night’s Billboard Music Awards might have left viewers in awe – but it left Lionel Richie a little freaked out.

“It was freaky,” Lionel told Access Hollywood’s Shaun Robinson when we caught up with music icon during his tour rehearsals in Los Angeles on Tuesday (his tour kicks off May 29 in Vancouver). “I must tell you it freaked me out because it’s Mike. I have to tell you it was brilliantly done, but it just made me a little uneasy because it was just… I keep waiting for him and then I realize that is him but it’s not him.

“It’s a little bit over the top for me,” Lionel – a longtime friend and frequent collaborator with Michael over the years – added of the “Slave to the Rhythm” performance.

READ: Billboard Music Awards 2014 — The Top 5 Moments

“You would rather remember him how you remember him?” Shaun noted.

“Yeah, let me have Mike the way I… you know, it was…,” Lionel said, shaking his head.

PHOTOS: Billboard Music Awards 2014 — The Red Carpet

On Sunday night following the Billboard Awards, AccessLiz Hernandez spoke with Michael’s brother, Jackie Jackson, who said his late brother would’ve given the performance a “thumbs up.”

“Beautiful, unbelievable,” Jackie told Liz. “I thought he was there for real. I got teary eyed a little bit.”

-- Eric Anderson

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