Lionel Richie went a little bit country in 2012 with the release of Tuskegee, a collection of 13 of his hit songs recorded as duets with some of the biggest names in country music including Jason Aldean, Tim McGraw, Blake Shelton, Darius Rucker, Rascal Flatts, Kenny Chesney, Shania Twain, Kenny Rogers, Willie Nelson and more. Lionel returned to his roots on the album, paying tribute to his hometown of Tuskegee, Alabama.
“Tuskegee is where it all began, the place where I felt that everything was available and possible,” he said. “It’s where I learned about life and love and the power of music, and the place I built a musical foundation that knows no genres or boundaries.”
The album debuted at No 1 on the Billboard Country Albums chart, Lionel’s highest-charting album since 1986. “I am ecstatic!” Lionel said of the debut. “These songs are like my children, so I am overwhelmed that they are being embraced by several generations of music lovers. I am so grateful to all of my duet partners for bringing their own distinctive styles and personalities to this album and interpreting these songs in fresh new ways.”
In just five weeks, the album went platinum, selling more than a million copies. Tuskegee was one of the best-selling country albums 2012. Lionel joins Ray Charles as the only artists in history to have No. 1 albums on both the Billboard Country Albums and R&B/Hip-Hop Albums charts.