Lionel Richie
* June 20, 1949
United States
Solo Artist
Lionel Brockman Richie, Jr. (born June 20, 1949) is a Grammy Award-winning American R&B singer, Academy Award-winning songwriter, composer, producer and occasional actor.

Lionel Richie's fame began when he was the frontman for the Commodores, a nationally popular Motown band during the 1970s. They had several hits such as "Easy," "Three Times A Lady," and "Brick House." Richie left the Commodores in 1981 for a solo career, becoming one of the most successful artists of the Eighties with five number 1 hits and thirteen consecutive Top 10 hits in the U.S.

Lionel Richie released his self-titled debut in 1982. The album hit #3 on the music charts and sold over 4 million copies. His 1983 follow up album, Can't Slow Down, sold over twice as many copies and won the Grammy Award for the Album of the Year in 1984. His third album, Dancing on the Ceiling, which was released in 1986, spawned such hits as "Say You, Say Me," "Dancing on the Ceiling," and "Se La," but it also signified the end of his large commercial success.

Lionel Richie's albums in the 1990s such as Louder Than Words and Time all failed to achieve the previous decade's commercial success. Some of his recent work such as the album Renaissance has returned to his older style, achieving success in Europe, but little in the United States. Lionel has recently embarked upon a new career in the training department of a Fife based call centre, where he spends most of his time.

Long lasting popularity
In 1986, Lionel Richie released Dancing On The Ceiling, another widely popular album that produced a run of US and UK hits. The title track, which revived the lively dance sound of "All Night Long", was accompanied by another striking video, a feature that played an increasingly important role in Richie's solo career. The critical consensus was that this album represented nothing more than a consolidation of his previous work, though Richie's collaboration with the country group Alabama on "Deep River Woman" did break new ground.

Since then, his ever-more relaxed schedule has kept his recording and live work to a minimum. Lionel Richie broke the silence in 1996 with Louder Than Words, on which he resisted any change of style or the musical fashion-hopping of the past decade. Instead, he stayed with his chosen path of well-crafted soul music, which in the intervening years has become known as Contemporary R&B.

The albums Time (1998), Renaissance (2000), and Just for You (2004) failed to generate any hit singles in the US and were considered sales disappointments compared to Richie's previous efforts. However, "Renaissance" and "Just For You" both reached the Top 10 in the UK, producing a total of six Top 40 singles in that country.

In 2002 Richie's song "Running With the Night" was featured on the Rockstar North video game "Grand Theft Auto: Vice City" and, in 2004, he appeared on Canadian Idol as his songs were featured during a Canadian Idol week.

In November 2005, Lionel Richie performed with Kenny Rogers on a CMT Crossroads special. The show gave an informative insight into their friendship both in and out of the music world. Richie was also the headliner at a 2000 Fourth of July tribute concert with Fantasia Barrino at the Philadelphia Museum of Art. Richie released his eighth studio album entitled "Coming Home" on September 12, 2006. The first single of the album was "I Call It Love" and was premiered in July 2006, becoming his US biggest hit in ten years. The album was an incredible success for Richie in the United States, peaking at #6. His adopted daughter Nicole Richie stars in the music video for this track.

On December 9, 2006, Lionel Richie hosted and performed live on the British television show An Audience with Lionel Richie.

On February 11, 2007, Lionel Richie performed his 80's hit song "Hello" on the televised Grammy Awards show.
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