Years with The Commodores
During his years as a student in around mid 60s, Lionel Richie formed several different R&B bands in Tuskegee. In 1968, he was offered a spot as a singer and saxophonist in the band named The Commodores. The same year, the band landed a contract with the Atlantic Records and released their debut record. Shortly afterwards, they moved to the Motown Records and became a supporting act to The Jackson 5. Eventually, the band established its repute as a successful soul group. Their initial albums featured tunes that were fancy, danceable and funky. However, overtime Richie started to write more softer and romantic ballads.
In another few years, Richie penned songs for other artists. Kenny Rogers’ number one hit, Lady was composed by him. Following that, he also produced Rogers’ studio album, “Share Your Love”. This led to a lot more projects, as Richie started writing for several artists associated with Motown. Eventually, he decided to go his separate way, for he realized his sound had developed into something a lot more different then the initial music of The Commodores.
Solo Journey and Later Years
Lionel Richie embarked on his solo career with the release of his self titled debut album and the number one song, Truly. With the following hits such as My Love and You Are, Richie managed to establish his career as one of the top selling and most loved balladeers of the 80s. His sophomore studio album titled “Can’t Slow Down” sold even more rapidly than his debut one, and also won him two Grammys, including in the category of “Album of the Year”. Young Richie had already made a mark in the music industry; however, it was just the start. In Olympic Games XXIII, Richie performed his hit balled, All Night Long during the closing ceremony, mesmerizing thousands of spectators once again.
A number of albums followed these successful ventures. “Dancing on the Ceiling” from 1986 was yet another massive hit. Astounding singles such as Hello kept coming, and Richie pretty much kept his stardom alive. In 2000, he released “Renaissance”, which earned critical acclaim and commercial success within Europe, however couldn’t touch his earlier work’s acclaim in the US. In 2012, Richie released his latest album titled “Tuskegee”. The album includes thirteen of his hit duet songs performed with several famous names of the music industry. Although, Richie continued to produce music, if not as regularly as before, he stopped touring. In June 2013, much to the joy of his dedicated fans, he announced his return and that he is going to embark on his worldwide tour, which will be titled as “All the Hits All Night Long”.