Chris Stapleton, The Band Perry and Luke Bryan were among the A-list roster of stars from all major genres of music who showed their appreciation for Lionel Richie Saturday night by performing their takes on his major hits, as Richie himself was honored as the MusiCares Person of the Year for 2016.
The event, which took place at the Los Angeles Convention Center, was hosted by admitted Richie super-fan Jimmy Kimmel, who channeled Richie from his days with the Commodores in the 1970s by wearing an afro wig and a fringe coat. “He has so many hits, he has so many terrible outfits,” Kimmel declared. “I have to say, it’s hard to imagine singing about being easy on Sunday morning dressed like this. But Lionel Richie did it.”
Then the hits began, with some interpretations clearly working better than others, but all of them clearly heartfelt. Stapleton delivered a trademark raw and powerful performance of Richie’s ballad “Lady,” even if he did flub a word in the opening line. The Band Perry’s three-part harmony worked well on on “Endless Love,” while Luke Bryan — who’s performed Richie hits in concert many times — was right at home with his performance of “Oh No.”
Other artists performing at the event included Stevie Wonder, gospel star Yolanda Adams, rockers Florence Welch, Lenny Kravitz, and Dave Grohl of Foo Fighters, and R&B stars Rihanna, Usher, John Legend, Pharrell, The Roots, pop star Demi Lovato, and even actor Kevin Spacey.
Proceeds from Saturday’s 26th annual MusiCares event go to MusiCares, which provides support for the music community in times of financial, medical and personal need. The organization is the charitable arm of the National Recording Academy of Arts & Sciences, which awards the Grammys.
The 58th annual Grammy Awards air Monday night on CBS starting at 8 p.m. ET.
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