Long before American Idol debuted, Lionel Richie was an idol to his millions of fans. He personifies the term superstar. He is a legendary talent who is gracious, gifted, and incredibly philanthropic. This musical icon has sold more than 125 million albums worldwide, making him one of the world’s best-selling artists of all time. He was honored with an Oscar for his original song Say You, Say Me, which he both wrote and recorded for the film White Nights.
He’s earned a Golden Globe Award (for Say You, Say Me), four Grammy Awards, and the distinction of being named MusiCares Person of the Year in 2016. Richie was a Kennedy Center honoree in 2017 and in 2018 his handprints and footprints were immortalized in cement at the TCL Chinese Theatre IMAX in Hollywood alongside other celebrated musical, comedic, and cinematic giants.
The past March Lionel Richie became the recipient of the distinguished Library of Congress Gershwin Prize for Popular Song, which honored his lifetime contributions to popular music. He was feted with an all-star tribute concert in Washington, D.C. and the celebration will be broadcast nationally on PBS stations on May 17 at 9 p.m. EST.
A songwriting genius, Richie is known for his mega-hits such as Lady, Hello, Endless Love, All Night Long, Penny Lover, Stuck on You, and Dancing on the Ceiling. This giant of music co-wrote the iconic We Are the World, for the USA for Africa fundraiser that generated more than $60 million in donations and also sold millions of records.
He began his career as part of the R & B group the Commodores, writing memorable top 10 hits such as Three Times a Lady, Still, and Easy. It’s no surprise that Richie has the distinction of writing songs that turned into No. 1 hits for more than 11 consecutive years.
His musical achievements are legendary; he received the George and Ira Gershwin Lifetime Achievement Award in 2008 and was named a judge in 2018 on ABC’s mega-hit American Idol. He’s revered on the show for his passion, empathy and enthusiasm, which he generously shares with the numerous contestants.
Philanthropy is always a priority for Lionel. He works tirelessly for numerous philanthropic causes including the Breast Cancer Research Foundation where he helped raise more than $3.1 million. He credits his grandmother, who survived breast cancer in her 80s and lived to be over 100 years old, as his inspiration in supporting this great cause.
He’s passionate about a wealth of worthy causes. He spends his time and his efforts helping at-risk and disadvantaged youth, those suffering from Parkinson’s Disease, UNICEF, his alma mater, Tuskegee University, and a host of other worthwhile charitable foundations and causes.
In 2019 Richie was named Global Ambassador and Chairman of the Global Ambassador Group for the Prince’s Trust, a charity founded in 1976 by Charles, Prince of Wales. The same year he was also honored at the Keep Memory Alive’s 23rd Annual Power of Love Gala in Las Vegas where he helped raise over $10 million for the Cleveland Clinic Nevada. The monies raised were used to provide service, care, and resources for those suffering from cognitive diseases.
Don’t miss the opportunity to see his show Lionel Richie — Back to Las Vegas! at the Encore Theatre at Wynn Las Vegas. Tickets for performances went on sale in early April and he has a host of concerts throughout 2022.