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Lionel Richie: I used to keep sex score

Published 02/06/2015

Lionel Richie
Lionel Richie

Lionel Richie remembers witnessing the "fear, shock and awe" in young male musicians when they realised they had become dads.

The 65-year-old rose to fame as part of funk band the Commodores, who released hits such as Three Times a Lady and Easy.

Their romantic and soulful sound garnered them a mass female following, which Lionel took full of advantage of at the beginning of his career.

"When the touring started we knew we were gonna do a hundred shows in as many cities, maybe more, in a year. So we decided: We're gonna make love to every girl in the world. That was our mission statement," he grinned to Britian's GQ magazine.

"No, no, no. I mean... we all kept score, yeah. We were college guys, so we liked stats. And when you start out, it's madness: there's one in the morning, one in the afternoon, one in the evening. It's great. You're killing it.

"But all of a sudden you get to the fifth show and you're, like: Everybody get out of my room! You can't do it. I don't care whether you're 19 and sexually possessed - you can't do that and put on high-heeled boots and run across the stage every night."

He added that drugs were inviting to stars at the time as it gave them "stamina". But they had negative effects too, such as going to rehab and falling down on stage during a performance.

While he and his former bandmates were careful, Lionel witnessed plenty of musicians wind up with big consequences following their reckless actions.

"It wasn't the sex and it wasn't the drugs. It was... babies. Holy sh*t! The first time you get that phone call when someone says... hey, guess what?" he said of accidental pregnancies. "That's called fear, shock and awe. That's when I realised the gun was loaded, you know what I'm saying?"

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