Watch Lionel Richie & Jimmy Fallon Recreate That Classic "Hello" Video
Perhaps one of the most unforgettable entries in the canon of music videos, Lionel Richie‘s “Hello” truly stands in a class all its own. Why is it so brilliant? Let’s review.
First, the song itself. “Hello” has proven to be one of the most enduring soft-R&B songs of all time, mostly thanks to its iconic chorus line “Hello, is it me you’re looking for?” Legend has it that these words were actually used by Richie when he greeted the song’s co-writer, James Anthony Carmichael, at his apartment. Carmichael was stopped dead in his tracks, and immediately commanded Richie to “Finish that song.” Second, the fashion. The video treats us to Richie in primetime jerry curl, his blazer rolled up just so, between elbows and wrists. Have you ever pulled off any look as well as that superfine sweater-sportcoat combo? Don’t kid yourself. Lionel’s taste is so expensive, they don’t call him Richie for nothing.
Third, of course, is the sculpture. Oh, that sculpture. If you’re reading this, you know. In a 2014 interview with Rolling Stone, Richie told the story of the bust of his head:
“I get to the video shoot and there’s this God-awful looking clay model of my head…I said, ‘Bob [Girardi, the video’s director], this doesn’t look like me.’ He said, ‘OK, we’ll do the scene and we’ll talk about this later, Lionel.’ We get to scene two and I said, ‘Bob, I see the bust here. It doesn’t look like me.’ He says, ‘Scene two, now we’re getting closer.’ It happens again with scene three and then finally we’re getting right to shoot the scene where I discover that she’s done it. I say, ‘Bob, it doesn’t look like me.’ And he looks at me and says, ‘Lionel, she’s blind!’ And I said, ‘OK, I get it.'”
Friday night, Jimmy Fallon and Lionel himself recreated the “Hello” video on The Tonight Show, deploying an even more lifelike bust at its grand finale. And while Fallon sported a commendably 80s-ready outfit, we have to say it’s not quite the blazer brilliance of the OG clip. Watch it below.