How "country" is Lionel Richie?You might want to ask that question, because Lionel Richie, a giant name in rock, wrote and produced this song for Kenny Rogers. Richie has always been a talented songwriter and performer, beginning with The Commodores in the 1960s. So, in my mind, the process of writing this song "Lady," went something like this: rock and country mated and had a child that was a mixture of both genres. It became a best seller, Number one on the charts in 1980, crossing over into both pop and country.
Kenny Rogers wasn't always "country."Rogers actually began with pop songs, moved to jazz, then rock n' roll and finally, to country songs. I think his heart was always in those down home country songs, although his recordings have been applauded on both sides of the fence. I met Rogers and country star Dottie West back in the 80s when I was in charge of hotel advertising for a local Las Vegas paper. Their big hits together were "Every Time Two Fools Collide," followed up with "Anyone Who Isn't Me Tonight." and "What Are We Doin' In Love?" West's career was revived by the duet recordings with Rogers. She passed away in September of 1991.
"Lady" must have been involved in many engagements and marriages.How could a woman refuse someone who proposed and offered an engagement ring, with Kenny Rogers singing "Lady," the perfect paean of love, in the background? It was the most romantic, gentle, yet passionate song of the time and undoubtedly, many engagements and marriages followed its release. Today, it is still a popular way for a gentleman to hold a woman in his arms and dance with her, subtly (or not!) letting her know that's how he feels.
Kenny Rogers Trivia
He was once known as Kenneth Rogers, in a jazz group called The Bobby Doyle Trio.
In 1966 he was a member of The New Christy Minstrels, both as singer and bass player.
In 1967 he joined The First Edition, eventually known as Kenny Rogers and The First Edition. The group disbanded in 1976.
In 1977, his recording of "Lucille" was a major hit, reaching Number One in many countries and after that the hits kept coming.
He was inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame in 2013.
This video is from the days when Kenny
was into psychedelic music and part of the
Kenny Rogers and the First Edition.
There's just nobody like Kenny Rogers.