Lionel Richie (Bonus Tracks)
Released: Jan 1982
Lionel Richie's 1982 debut marked a change from his work as drummer-turned-lead-singer of the Commodores. Letting out his inner Barry Manilow, he wrote torch ballads like "Truly" and "My Love" that would make him a crossover megastar, and his uptempo songs like "You Are" and "Round and Round" have an easygoing disco sway without the hardcore funk of his former band. Yet he didn't abandon his R&B fans; many of them were embracing smooth jazz and soft pop, too. Some may have missed the defiant soul music of the 1970s, but they couldn't blame Richie for creating a soundtrack for a new era.