Legendary hit maker Lionel Richie has signed with Red Light Management for representation, Billboard.biz has learned. This is the second major signing of the young year for RLM, which recently added Tiesto to its growing list of clients.
Best known for his 1970s-'80s hits with his former band the Commodores and as a massively successful solo artist, Richie has enjoyed a career resurgence of late with last year's release of Tuskegee, a collection of 13 of Richie's hits recorded as duets with such country artists as Sugarland's Jennifer Nettles, Blake Shelton, Tim McGraw, Kenny Chesney, Willie Nelson, Kenny Rogers, Darius Rucker, Jason Aldean, Shania Twain and Rascal Flatts.
The album has sold 1.1 million units in the U.S., according to Nielsen SoundScan, and is Richie's third biggest-selling album in the SoundScan era. Released last March on Mercury Nashville, Tuskeegee sold 199,000 in its first week and eventually went to No. 1, becoming the ninth biggest-selling album of 2012.
Richie was formerly managed by Michael Richardson, and prior to that was managed by AEG Live CEO Randy Phillips. Richie, who is booked by William Morris Endeavor Entertainment, enjoys an active touring career, and is one of the most popular artists in the world for private and/or corporate bookings. Richardson could not immediately be reached for comment.
RLM, headed by founder/owner Coran Capshaw, is the largest independent management firm in the world, with roughly 60 managers representing close to 200 acts, including Dave Matthews Band, Phish, Tim McGraw, Faith Hill, Alecia Keys, Miley Cyrus, Luke Bryan, Kool & the Gang, R. Kelley, Steve Angelo, and many others.
A rep for RLM declined to comment on the record, but did confirm Richie's signing.