When Scotty McCreery and Tim McGraw performed McGraw's 2004 hit 'Live Like You Were Dying' on tonight's 'American Idol,' it was a"McDuet" and a symbolic passing of the torch.

How so, you might ask yourself? Well, here's how! McGraw is one of the most recognizable, identifiable and respected male voices in country music and he is in the midst of an enviable career that will etch several chapters into the genre's history book. He is by no means "done," but he has set the tone for a successful male singer in the distinctly American genre and he is the yardstick by which McCreery should hope to measure himself.

McCreery is taking his first steps towards a career path that should emulate McGraw's; so to see the two perform together and enjoy vocal trade offs on this slower song, like they were a country duo, was a harbinger of what's to come for McCreery -- whether he wins or not.

Watch Scotty McCreery and Tim McGraw Sing 'Live Like You Were Dying' on 'American Idol'