American Idol judge Lionel Richie delivered chart-topping hits with his funk group, the Commodores, in the late ’60s. The Grammy winner accomplished so much during his career, but one of his biggest joys has been becoming a father of three kids: Nicole Richie, Miles Richie and Sofia Richie.
Lionel dropped his self-titled debut album in 1982 under Motown. The following year, he released his second album, Can’t Slow Down. In addition to his successful album release in 1983, the songwriter met his adopted daughter, Nicole, for the first time at a Prince concert. He was friends with the youngster’s biological parents, musician Peter Michael Escovedo and Karen Moss. Lionel and his first wife, Brenda Harvey, officially adopted the fashion maven when she was 9.
“Nicole was actually a godsend. She was a little girl who needed a shot,” the hitmaker told People in February 2022. “She was used to people coming and going. She looked at me and I’d say, ‘I’m not going anywhere.'”
The “Hello” singer and the businesswoman divorced in 1993. He married his second wife, Diane Alexander, in 1995. Their son, Miles, was born one year before they tied the knot. The couple welcomed daughter Sofia in 1998, six years before their divorce. Lionel has remained close to all three of his children and gushed about them in a March 2019 interview with Closer.
“There is a family of people who are going to be in that room with you on the last days of your life,” he said. “If you made sure they’re there for you and love you, that’s a great achievement, and everything else is icing on the cake.”
The “We Are the World” writer began dating model Lisa Parigi in 2014. She has also established a great relationship with his kids. For Lionel, being close to his family and spending as much time with them as possible is his top priority. He still approaches parenting with an incredible sense of humor.
“With my kids, I know their job is to completely scare me to death. And they’re doing a great job, by the way,” he told People in April 2019. “I told this to Nicole the other day, my job is to embarrass them as much as I could, as long as I’m here. They’re trying to do the same to me, so I think it’s an equal swap right now.”
Keep scrolling to meet Lionel’s three kids.
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