b. Lionel Brockman Richie, Jr., 20th June 1949, Tuskegee, Alabama, U.S.A.
Lionel Richie was part of the group, the Commodores, before commencing a solo career at the outset of the Eighties.
Lionel was raised in Tuskegee, Alabama.
He is the son of Alberta R. (Foster) and Lionel Brockman Richie, and grew up on the campus of Tuskegee Institute.
Lionel’s family relocated to Joliet, Illinois, where he graduated from the Joliet Township High School, East Campus.
He became an accomplished tennis player, subsequently accepting a tennis scholarship to attend Tuskegee Institute.
Whilst attending the Tuskegee Institute, Lionel formed a succession of R&B groups in the mid-60's.
In 1968, he became the lead singer and saxophonist with the Commodores.
commodores with the jackson 5
They signed to Atlantic Records, initially, before moving on to Motown Records.
The Commodores became a major soul group in the 70’s.
Lionel was responsible for writing and singing many of their biggest hits, including 'Easy', 'Three Times A Lady' and 'Still'.
He composed Kenny Rogers' 1980 number 1 'Lady', and produced his 'Share Your Love' release the following year.
Also in 1981, he duetted with Diana Ross on the theme song for the film 'Endless Love'.
Following the success of this release, he began a solo career in 1982.
lionel richie - 1982 / can't slow down - 1983 / dancing on the ceiling - 1985 / louder than words - 1996
His debut, 'Lionel Richie', contained the single, 'Truly’, and in 1983, he released 'Can't Slow Down', which sold more than 15 million copies worldwide, winning two Grammy awards, including Album Of The Year.
The album featured the number 1 hit 'All Night Long' and the soulful ‘Love Will Find A Way’.
He released the single ‘Hello’ which indicated a move away from the R&B side of his music, showcasing a more mainstream sound.
at the olympic games 1984
In 1984, Lionel performed ‘All Night Long’ at the closing ceremony of the XXIII Olympic Games in Los Angeles.
He had three more top ten hits in 1984, namely, ‘Stuck on You’ (charting at number 3), ‘Running with the Night’ (which reached number 7) and ‘Penny Lover’ (charting at number 8).
In 1985 he penned and performed the song, ‘Say You, Say Me’, for the film ‘White Nights’.
The song won an Oscar and reached number 1 on the U.S. charts, remaining for four weeks.
Lionel later collaborated with Michael Jackson on the charity single 'We Are The World' by U.S.A. For Africa, and in 1986, he released 'Dancing On The Ceiling', which produced another succession of U.S. and U.K. mainstream chart hits.
Following this release, his career slowed for a decade.
In 1987, he had become exhausted from his work schedule and adopted a low profile, taking care of his father in Alabama.
In 1992, he released his first greatest-hits collection, entitled ‘Back to Front’.
In 1996 an album was released, entitled 'Louder Than Words’, which showcased a move back towards an R&B sound.
time - 1998 / renaissance - 2000 / encore - 2002 / coming home - 2004 / just for you - 2006 / sounds of the season - 2006 / just go - 2009 / tuskegee - 2012
His more recent album releases, including ‘Renaissance’, have seen a return to an older sound.
Since 2004, he has achieved a total of six Top 40 singles in the U.K.
Lionel Richie (Motown Records 1982)
Can't Slow Down (Motown Records 1983)
Dancing On The Ceiling (Motown Records 1986)
Back To Front (Motown Records 1992)
Louder Than Words (Mercury Records 1996)
Time (Polygram Records 1998)
Renaissance (Polygram Records 2000)
Encore (Island / Def Jam Records 2002)
Coming Home (Island Records 2004)
Just For You (Island Records 2006)
Sounds Of The Season (Island Records 2006)
Just Go (island Records 2009)
Tuskegee (Mercury Records 2012)