3 April 2012, Singapore – Tuskegee is the city in Alabama where Lionel Richie grew up. His first musical influences came from the area, which has a rich history in gospel, R&B, and country. This record, named after this city, explores these influences in new takes on 14 of his most revered “anthems of our day”, inviting some of his favorite artists to share the journey.
Richie is joined by renowned artists such as Shania Twain, Kenny Rogers and Willie Nelson as well as his pick of today’s contemporary scene in Pixie Lott and Jennifer Nettles (Sugarland). Tuskegee is an exciting and transcendent arc in a career that has seen album sales of more than 100 million, 22 Top 10s, five Grammys, an Academy Award for Best Original Song, a Golden Globe, and a host of other awards from virtually every major entertainment organization. While defying boundaries and breaking barriers throughout his storied career, Richie reveals once again that Tuskegee will join the ranks of his timeless body of work that touches people of all demographics across the world.
“As my songwriting progressed, I realized that my songs perfectly translated to the country genre,” says the living legend as he taps on the keys of the piano in his state-of-the-art recording studio. It was when Conway Twitty sang “Three Times a Lady” along with songs such as “Lady” and “Deep River Women” that Richie knew country music was clearly omnipresent in the lyrics he wrote. “I was born and raised in Tuskegee, Alabama. I am a country boy and proud of it. To do this project just felt natural,” says Richie.
“Growing up with country, R&B, gospel, and classical music from my grandmother and pop, Tuskegee was the perfect melting pot for my influences as a writer,” he says, “and the title, Tuskegee, is a validation of my growing up there-the place I call home.”
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