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It’s almost time for the Dubai Jazz Fest, which means it’s definitely time to get excited about Lionel Richie.

The ex-Commodores frontman headlines on Friday, February 27 at the Dubai Media Amphitheatre. And it’s fair to say he’s one of our all-time favourites. He’s sold over 90 million albums, won several Grammys and always puts on the biggest show.

So, let’s start counting down through is classic tracks that we’ll hopefully be crooning along with in a few weeks!

All Night Long

As soon as those bongos start playing a tropical beat, you know – you know – you’re in for a good time. The single released in 1983 marked a new direction for him, with more Caribbean beats and harmonies.

Oh, and those African-sounding lyrics you always pretend to know the words to? Yup, they’re all gibberish. Totally made up. “Tom bo li de say de moi ya,” and “Jambo jumbo.”

Hello

Another classic from 1983, Hello is a wonderfully slow and soppy number with a wonderfully slow and soppy video. The song is timeless, utterly timeless. And, as a bonus, the line ‘Hello, is it me you’re looking for’ has inspired some of the best memes and GIFs known to internet man.

Easy

Strictly a Commodores song, Easy is another laidback belter. It’s the sort of song you pull your lighter out to at a festival, hug your best mate and end up crying your eyes out with love. Wait, is that just us, then?

Either way. This is actual musical magic. The best of the best.

10 rock points if you can name the American band who covered it in 1992, making it a hit all over again? Well done if you said Faith No More.

Dancing On The Ceiling

OK, enough of the slowies. Time to up the tempo and get back on the dancefloor. Or rather upside the dancefloor on the ceiling?

This was Lionel’s last big hit of the 80s as after this single, he took a 10-year break.

Say You, Say Me

Another of his classic mid-80s tracks, Say You, Say Me won an Oscar for Best Original Track and was Richie’s ninth solo Number 1.

The tune was a huge global hit, but especially in South Africa. And even in the middle of Apartheid, music broke through all racial lines.

Lionel, we salute you!

Check out the full details on the festival and the other headliners here.

And grab tickets for the Dubai Jazz Festival here.

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