In an interview the day before the show, the bands joked around together, finished each other's sentences, hoped for a San Francisco 49ers victory, and talked about an as-yet unannounced plan to perform some dates together this summer.
"It has been fun," Rascal Flatts' Jay DeMarcus said Friday, a day before the band's Saturday concert. "We've got mutual respect for each other and also love all the music equally. So, when you get a bunch of creative people in a room that love what each other is about and what they do, it's very easy to get along."
Although CMT Crossroads is known for pairing acts of different strokes, the union between Rascal Flatts and Journey started more organically than most. They performed together on the CMT Awards last summer in Nashville.
"Last time we were in Nashville too, (Flatts guitarist) Joe Don (Rooney) came down here and he came on stage with us and ripped it up, so we've been sort of talking ever since then," Journey founder Neal Schon said. "It's like a natural progression."
So when someone proposed a Crossroads concert, Journey keyboardist Jonathan Cain said, "There's only one band that comes to my mind, and it is Rascal Flatts. Gary (LeVox) can really get it, and that's the biggest part of it, is like, can you reproduce the sound? Plus, I love their songs."
The bands belted out each other's hits Saturday night; their rendition of "Don't Stop Believin'" could be heard on the streets of downtown New Orleans.
"It's really just a dream come true," said LeVox, Rascal Flatts' lead singer. "You really have to pinch yourself because you can't believe that you're singing 'Don't Stop Believin" and all of the amazing Journey songs that have just been a piece of American music."
The groups said they plan to do some shows together for the summer.