British Summertime (BST Hyde Park)

Lionel Richie – Live at BST Hyde Park **** Review

Lionel Richie looks good for 70. Lionel Richie looks good full stop. As an audience member who had seen Lionel 25 times put it before the show: “You know what you’re going to get with Lionel, he always delivers.”

And deliver he did. Hit after hit. Singalong after singalong. All set long. Three Lionel sparkly jackets’ worth (an orange bomber jacket to start, then purple and finally a brilliant white).

Opening with Running With The Night Richie urged the crowd to singalong to every song, and many of them did. He turned to the piano for Easy and he makes it look precisely that.

Richie is the consummate professional, he knows what his audience wants, his classic songs in a singalong format. A silky-smooth performer and entertainer, conducting the crowd with numbers such as You Are The Sun, You Are The Rain and Stuck On You.

 A rockier feel came with the Commodores’ Brick House and then back to the piano for the gentle Three Times A Lady. The 80’s smash Dancing On The Ceiling brought 80s styling from his band and the crowd lapped it up.

His message We Are The World, which he co-wrote with Michael Jackson he said “is needed more than when I wrote it” preceded the fabulous encore of All Night Long.

 Lionel delivered. As always.

Words and Live Photos by Chaz Brooks

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