Lionel Richie explains why he wished 'failure' on his daughter at the start of her showbiz career

Amy West
Lionel Richie has explained why he wished 'failure' on his daughter Sofia (R) at the start of her showbiz career (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images)

Lionel Richie has explained how he used to prepare his children for being in the tough world of showbiz.

During an American Idol event, the 70-year-old revealed that he used to wish “lots of failure” on his youngest daughter Sofia, 21, when she first started pursuing a career in the industry.

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“We’re in a business where it’s how you recover and ‘Yes, yes, yes’ does not feel terrible, so you have to get smacked in the face,” the Hello hitmaker said, noting the importance of learning how to deal with rejection. “I said, ‘You’re going to have a little bit more of a different time because you’re coming from a family where they expect a little bit more.’”

Lionel Ritchie with his children Nicole (L), Sofia and Miles (R) (Photo credit should read FREDERIC J. BROWN/AFP via Getty Images)

Richie went on to recall the time his eldest daughter Nicole got stage fright just before she was expected to perform at a talent show because they name-dropped him during her introduction.

“When Nicole was about four years old, she went on a talent show,” he remembered. “She’s about to go on to do her little act and they said, ‘And now we have Lionel Richie’s daughter’ and she froze. She said, ‘Dad I don’t want to be here.' I remember that being, what a terrifying moment.”

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While he may practiced a bit of the tough love treatment when Sofia was small, he claims she’s “doing fabulous” now that she’s a little older and wiser.

“She’s got the attitude. She sings too,” he told reporters, via PEOPLE. “I’m so excited about her. They’re all taking chances and I want them to do it now.”