28 Apr 2016

5 Lessons We Learned From Lionel Richie Songs

Lionel Richie‘s lovable demeanour, soulful voice and catchy tunes have ensured he remains a firm favourite in the hearts and minds of the British public.

Some of his hits are so deeply ingrained in the fabric of musical history, it’s hard to remember what life would be like without them.

While getting excited about his upcoming tour, we noticed that, actually, a lot of his most famous songs give some pretty great life advice, and we just had to share.

Here are some life lessons that we learned from listening to Lionel Richie’s greatest hits…

Sometimes what you want is right in front of you

Before Adele, nobody was more famous for writing a song about the nation’s universal greeting. Lionel Richie’s iconic Hello enjoys one of the most recognisable refrains in history (‘is it me you’re looking foooooor?’) – plus the music video is also genuinely amazing and a classic cultural reference (a visually impaired beauty uses the power love to create sensual clay model of Mr Richie.)

The message of the song is simple – sometimes the thing you want is right in front of you – you just can’t see it yet.

Of course, it’s an age-old tale, but it doesn’t stop people like @NoRealAlias trying to use it as a pick up line! ‘To the women in relationships and still haven't found what they are looking for. In the wise words of Lionel Richie, "Hello is it me..."’



Good luck with that one, mate!


If the party is really good, it’s okay to stay out all night long

When @LiisaJayneSmith tweets: ‘ALL NIGHT LONG! Wise words from Lionel Richie,’ we all know exactly what she means. Richie’s classic boogie-inducing tune, All Night Long, contains one, very important message. It’s okay to pull an all-nighter, and to party / karamu / fiesta forever. Well, okay, maybe not forever, Mr Richie, but we can probably manage until 7am.



Failing is okay, as long as you tried your best

You may be more familiar with the Faith No More cover of Lionel Richie’s Easy, especially if you’re a ‘90s kid, but either way it’s a true masterpiece. Written after a painful break-up, we think Richie is trying to tell us that, as long as you put everything into making something work, if it eventually breaks down, it’s okay. You can relax. You did everything you could. And that’s why you should be ‘easy like a Sunday morning’.


When things turn a bit mental on a night out, just go with the flow

‘Don’t hold back, because it ain't no use’ go the lyrics in Richie’s ‘80s hit Dancing On The Ceiling. The rest of the song has the same theme to it – even if things get so surreal and crazy that people quite literally start turning upside-down and dancing on the ceiling, it’s totally fine, just go with it and you’ll probably have a great night. Is this Richie’s personal vendetta against social anxiety? Who knows, but that’s how we’ve taken it.


Be grateful for your good friends

Say you, Say me is definitely one of Richie’s more pensive songs. It was originally written for the 1985 film White Nights, which tells the tale of a Soviet ballerina trying to escape to a better life. One of the key messages is that love and friendship can help pick you up in your darkest moments, but that finding them is tough. ‘Seems the hardest thing to do / is to find a friend or two / that helping hand / someone who understands / that when you feel you lost your way / you've got someone there to say, / I'll show you’. Suddenly we’re feeling very soppy! Time to text all your mates with a heart emoji…