This Day in Black History: June 20, 1949

Lionel Richie

This Day in Black History: June 20, 1949

Lionel Richie, singer and songwriter, was born June 20, 1949.

Published June 20, 2014

He is one of the world’s most successful singers, composers and record producers, having sold more than 100 million records worldwide. Lionel Richie, who was born June 20, 1949, in Tuskegee, Alabama, is one of the best-selling artists of all time.

He first came to the attention of the public as the lead singer with the Commodores and signed a recording contract with Atlantic Records in 1968. The group had several successful songs, including “Brick House” and “Machine Gun.” Richie started to do more composing and leading romantic ballads that became his signature, including “Easy” and “Three Times a Lady.”

By the late 1970s, Richie started accepting songwriting commissions from other artists and started his solo career in the early 1980s. After that, he started doing small roles in films in addition to songwriting and performing worldwide.

This year, Richie will be awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award at the BET Awards.

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(Photo: Andreas Rentz/Getty Images)

Written by Jonathan P. Hicks


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