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What could make for a more perfect weekend, than lying in bed with Lionel Richie. Not literally of course, but with his soulful voice seeping through the walls and penetrating my every vein. This album gathers some of his finest love songs, so obviously you're going to get the slower ones and no 'Dancing On The Ceiling.'
Who is he:
Former lead singer of The Commodores and a solo star in his own right. Lionel was probably at his commercial peak in the eighties.
On this album:
Off to a good start with the uplifting 'My Destiny' which is a setimental piece of pop directed at one lady. It is very personally done and he seems to feel the words. My criticism here is that the lyrics are overly sickly and tend to overpower the actual melody. Far better is the duet with Diana Ross. 'Endless Love' allows for both vocalists to play gently off each other, without breaching the boundaries of sickliness. Diana's vocals come off restrained and longing and Lionel sounds tender and trustworthy.
'Hello' brings back visions of Lionel and that clay head in the music video, yet it remains a resonant and stirring song of epic proportions. The little dramatic pause before he utters 'Hello' never fails to get me. Head to the lovely 'Penny Lover' where he seems to be whispering the vocals, daring not to alert anyone of his presence. Like a thief in the night, he prowls his way through the song, delivering the lyrics like a true gentleman.
Another of my tips is the not widely discussed 'Ballerina Girl,' which is just charming. Lionel's vocals are poised and teeter on breaking into something more spectacular but this never comes, allowing for a restrained and emotive little number.
Nineteen amazing tracks gives you value for money, the cover artwork is minimal and arty, though Lionel could have been shirtless. A very fine collection of his slower moments.
Not exactly blessed in the looks department, ex-Commodore Lionel has still managed to carve out a career as a romantic crooner of catchy and very popular love songs. Truly is a collection of 19 tracks, which show that when he was at his best, there were few better, although sometimes there was an overload of cheesiness. This CD is pure indulgence of slush. People worldwide must like it though, because he has sold over 60 million albums worldwide. If you think that because it is a collection of love songs, all you will get are ballads then you are wrong. Lionel opens up with "My Destiny", and dance influenced song from the late 1990's. This song proved to be the one which thrust him back in the public eye after seemingly years in the pop wilderness. He does not disappoint though, and quickly follows this up with the all time classic duet "Endless Love" which sees him alongside Diana Ross. It is a truly beautiful song, but as so many people have it as "their" song, you can sicken of it easily. Lionel first achieved fame and fortune with The Commodores, and no collection of love songs would be complete without the sublime "Three Times A Lady". I love this song, the lyrics are from the bottom of the heart, and Lionel's voice is suited to this song so well, which has made it an all time classic ballad. There are lesser known tracks on the CD such as "Don't Wanna Lose You", and I see this as a bonus, because it is a very good track, not the best, but still deserves it's place in the collection. Then just be get you back into the comfort zone, the next song is "Hello". It was a major hit when it was released, and again it remains as a classic song, although without the video, it does not seem to have the same impact. Back to the era of The Commodores with the ballad "Sail On". Another ballad, but not as laid back as others, although the next
track is. "Easy" is another Commodores track, and is the perfect chill out song. "Easy like Sunday morning" just sums the song and it's mood up in one line. The next track was a film soundtrack song. "Say You Say Me", was criminally ignored when it was released, and when you hear it again, you forget how very good a song it is, and the same goes for "Do It To Me" and "Penny Lover". They are instantly recognisable, but fade from the memory with time, and that is a shame. "Truly" does not seem to match up to the rest of the songs, however this weak link is quickly forgotten with the next track "Still". My all time favourite Commodores ballad sees Richie singing as if on the verge of tears, and this is understandable as the lyrics are touching and beautiful. Another less well known track follows, "Love Will Conquer All". It is an average song, but still deserving of it's place in the collection, as does "Sweet Love". The next track brings back memories of my childhood. "Ballerina Girl" was my favourite song when I was 7 or 8. I used to play it and sing really loud, so much so that my mum used to plead with me to stop. The CD lacks a big finish with "Still In Love", "Oh No", and "Just To Be Close To You", but reaches a peak with the final track "Stuck On You". It is a great ballad with great lyrics again. Buy this, it is the ultimate collection of love and slush.
'Truly - the love songs' is an album of 19 of Lionel's greatest love songs, spanning both his time with The Commodores and also in his solo career. Songs included on this are:-'three times a lady', 'hello', 'easy', 'truly', 'still' and the all time classic 'endless love' - the duet with Diana Ross. A great album showcasing Lionel Ritchie's talent, if you like a bit of romantic music, you should like this, it's definitely one of my favourite albums and belongs in all good cd collections - definitely a timeless classic.
Disc #1 Tracklisting
1 My Destiny - Lionel Richie
2 Endless Love - Lionel Richie, Diana Ross
3 Three Times A Lady - Commodores
4 Don't Wanna Lose You - Lionel Richie
5 Hello - Lionel Richie
6 Sail On - Commodores
7 Easy - Commodores
8 Say You Say Me - Lionel Richie
9 Do It To Me - Lionel Richie
10 Penny Lover - Lionel Richie
11 Truly - Lionel Richie
12 Still - Commodores
13 Love Will Conquer All - Lionel Richie
14 Sweet Love - Commodores
15 Ballerina Girl - Lionel Richie
16 Still In Love - Lionel Richie
17 Oh No - Commodores
18 Just To Be Close To You - Commodores
19 Stuck On You - Lionel Richie