Kenny Rogers to Join LionelRichie at Billboard’s SXSWShowcase

When Lionel Richie ** hits the
SHOWCASE at South By Southwest
tonight, he’ll be joined by Kenny
Rogers **, a man he calls his
“mentor” and “the most
important person” in the
launching of the second stage of
his career.
The two friends will play the 1980
hit “Lady” at ACL Live in Richie’s
SXSW debut. The ballad was
written and produced by Richie
and went on to top several
Billboard charts, including the
coveted Hot 100 and Adult
Contemporary charts.
“Because ‘Lady’ was so huge and
it was just our baby together, I
couldn’t think of another song to
do,” Richie said in announcing
the Austin duet. “He’s probably
one of the best friends I have in
the world… It’s very powerful for
me to have him on this record.
He’s really a dear friend and I’m
glad I could share this with him. I
can’t wait to sing with him
onstage and tell him thank you in
He went on, “I get emotional
because there’s one person in
this whole world that I owe the
launch of the second half of my
life, and that’s Kenny Rogers.”
Rogers seconded the praise,
telling the story of how ‘Lady’
came to be in the first place.
“The first time I heard ‘Three
Times a Lady,’ ‘Still,’ and all of
those incredible Commodore
songs, I knew there was a
connection between R&B music
and country music, so I tracked
Lionel down and brought him to
Vegas,” Rogers says. “He played
me a small part of ‘Lady,’ and I fell
in love with that song and his
writing at that point.”
SXSW HQ on Billboard: GET ALL
At the Billboard SXSW show,
Richie will be joined by other
“surprise guests” to be named
later. Before the “Easy” icon hits
the stage, though, some of the
most buzzworthy acts in Austin
will be gracing the stage,
including The-Dream, Poliça,
Wallpaper., and Vintage Trouble.
Richie, whose 10th album
“Tuskegee” is scheduled for
release on March 26, has created
an unforgettable body of work
both as a solo artist and as
frontman of pioneering ’70s soul/
funk band the Commodores. “All
Night Long (All Night),” “Say You,
Say Me,” “Hello,” and “We Are the
World” are just a few of the 22
top 10 hits he’s had on the
Billboard Hot 100 chart.
“Tuskegee” is a collection of many
of those hits, but on the album
Richie is joined by some of the
biggest names in country music
including Kenny Rogers, Jason
Aldean and Sugarland’s Jennifer
Nettles. He plans on bringing that
spirit of collaboration to SXSW as
“It’s so great to be a part of a
festival that for two decades has
helped launch the careers of
some important new artists and
celebrates iconic artists who have
had a lasting impact on the
musical landscape,” he told
Billboard’s 2012 SXSW showcase
show will begin at 8 p.m. CT on
March 14 and is open to festival
badge holders. A limited number
of non-badge holders will be able
to buy tickets at the door as well.


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