He's a drummer, he's a singer, he's a song writer, he's playing the piano, he's an actor, he's even a writer, he's so versatile that you'll find him playing Prog, Fusion, Pop, Rock and more. He happens to be one of only three solo artists who have sold more than 100 million albums worldwide. His name is Phil Collins and we want to tell you about him some interesting facts:
(Photo: Graham Wood, Getty Images)
1 Phil Collins was born as Philip David Charles Collins, on 30 January 1951, in a town in west London.
2. He received his first drum set (toy) as a Christmas present when he was five years old.
3. He is left-handed so his drum set is arranged differently than usual.
4. He taught himself to play the drums and even developed a technique and musical marking language unique to him.
5. Already at the age of five he participated in a young talent competition as a singer.
6. The big influence on him as a child was "The Beatles" and especially the drummer Ringo Starr.
7. Another big influence on Collins was the big band and jazz drummer Buddy Rich.
8. Already in high school he formed his first band " The Real Thing". Later he moved to "Freehold" with whom he wrote his first song "Lying Crying Dying".
9. At the age of 14 he took acting lessons and by 1964 he had already won a significant role in the musical "Oliver", which was staged at the "West End" Theater in London.
10. As part of his acting career he has served as an extra in the films "A Hard Day's Night" by "The Beatles" and "Chitty Chitty Bang Bang".
11. After becoming famous with "Genesis" and in his solo career, Collins will get more significant roles in films, such as the lead role in the 1988 film "Buster" and a role in Steven Spielberg's "Hook".
12. Simultaneously with his playing career, Collins continued to try his luck in music. He played in several bands until the end of the sixties and in 1969 won, together with the band "Flaming Youth" his first recording contract. The band recorded one album and disbanded.
14. George Harrison was not aware of Collins' contribution to his album, until the release of the extended edition marking the 30th anniversary of the album. As soon as he heard about it he thanked Collins and from then until Harrison's death the two maintained close friendships.
15. In August 1970 he joined "Genesis" after responding to an ad. He auditioned successfully at Peter Gabriel's parents' home and joined the band.
(Photo: Prog Archives)
16. Since then, Collins has played drums and sung background vocals on all of the band's albums, from the masterpiece album "Nursery Cryme" from 1971 to the album "The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway" from 1974.
17. He also sang lead vocals in two songs during Peter Gabriel's era: "For Absent Friends" and "More Fool Me".
18. In 1975 Collins joined the jazz and fusion band "Brand X", with whom he would release several studio and live albums.
19. In '74 and '75 he participated in two masterpiece albums: "Taking Tiger Mountain (By Strategy)" and Another Green World", both by Brian Eno.
20. In 1975, after Peter Gabriel left "Genesis", Phil Collins also became the band's lead singer, starting with the 1976 album "A Trick of the Tail". Collins will release masterful albums with the band as a drummer and lead vocalist, thus proving that this was still a band that is at the forefront of progressive rock, despite Peter Gabriel's departure.
21. Together with "Genesis", Collins will release a total of 13 albums. The band will change their style during the 1980s and Collins will continue to lead them with great success and huge hits that will conquer the music charts.
22. After Keith Moon's death in 1978, Collins was ready to leave "Genesis" to join "The Who". He spoke to Pete Townshend about the matter and offered his services, but Pete Townshend told him that they had already found a new drummer.
23. In 1981, in parallel with his work with "Genesis", Collins began his solo career and released the highly acclaimed album "Face Value", which included the hit "In the Air Tonight".
24. While working on the song on the studio, Collins and recording technician Hugh Padgham invented the "Gated Reverb" sound technique.
25. Guitarist Eric Clapton is featured on the song "If Leaving Me Is Easy" from the album.
26. As part of his solo career, Collins has released 8 studio albums, which includes hits such as: "In the Air Tonight", "Against All Odds", "One More Night", "Sussudio", "Two Hearts", "Another Day in Paradise" and more
27. Collins is the artist who during the 1980s released the largest number of hits that entered the top 40 on American Billboard.
28. In 1982 he worked with Frida from "ABBA" on her solo album "Something's Going On".
29. Collins plays drums on the 1982 albums "Pictures at Eleven" and "The Principle of Moments" from 1983, Robert Plant's first two solo albums.
30. Collins has collaborated, played and sung on the albums of many other artists such as: Philip Bailey, Steve Hackett, Anthony Philips, David Crosby, Peter Gabriel, Michael Rotherford, Adam Ant, Peter Banks, John Martyn, Tommy Bolin, John Cale, Paul McCartney more and more.
31. In 1985 Collins produced some of the songs on Eric Clapton's "Behind The Sun" album.
32. Clapton returned the favor four years later, when he played solo on Collins' song "I Wish It Would Rain Down", from the album "...But Seriously".
33. That same year he produced and played the song "No One Is to Blame" by singer Howard Jones.
35. Collins also played a set of his songs on the same show and was even the drummer in Eric Clapton's performance at the aforementioned fundraising show.
36. Collins was also the only musician to perform at both "Live Aid" shows, in England and in the US. Immediately after the performance with "Led Zeppelin" in London, Collins boarded a helicopter that took him to Heathrow Airport, where he boarded a Concord plane that flew him to New York and from there in another helicopter straight to a show in Philadelphia.
37. Collins plays drums in the song "Woman in Chains" from the album "The Seeds of Love" by "Tears for Fears".
38. Phil Collins' son - Simon, followed in his father's footsteps and is the drummer and singer in the prog band "Sound of Contact".
39. His son Nic is also a drummer and he fills Phil's place on the drums during Genesis' "The Last Domino" tour.
40. Collins is an activist and part of various animal welfare organizations.
41. And a little about his health in recent years. As a result of an acute ear infection in 2001, he became deaf in his left ear.
42. In 2009 it was reported that Phil Collins had undergone neck vertebra surgery and that he would not be able to continue drumming.
43. In 2014 he reported to the media that due to nerve problems, he had difficulty holding the drumsticks.
44. In 2017 it was reported that he also has a limitation in walking due to previous back surgery.
45. In 2018, pictures of Collins walking with a cane have been published, but all this did not prevent him from continuing to perform (while sitting), initially as part of his solo career on the "Not Dead Yet Tour" tour, which began in 2017 and lasted until 2019, and later on "The Last Domino" tour by "Genesis".
46. Collins is an expert with extensive knowledge of the Alamo Battle, which took place in the 19th century, and he even wrote a book about it called: "The Alamo and Beyond: A Collector's Journey".
(Photo: Photo: Stephanie Pistel)
47. In 1999, Collins won an Oscar for the song "You'll Be in My Heart", which he wrote for the soundtrack of the movie "Tarzan".
48. Collins has also won seven Grammy Awards, six Brit Awards, three American Music Awards, two Golden Globe Awards and a Disney Legend award.
49. In 1994 he was awarded the title of the Royal Victorian Order of the United Kingdom, due to his contribution to music.
50. In 2005, Collins made an unforgettable performance at Bloomfield Stadium, Israel.
51. In 2010 he was inducted into the "Rock Hall of Fame", along with "Genesis".
52. In 2015 he re-shot all of his solo albums covers and released them with up-to-date photos, in remastered versions, released in a box under the name: “Take a look at me now…”.
53. He is one of three solo artists who have sold more than 100 million albums. The other two are Paul McCartney and Michael Jackson. In addition, Collins has sold about 150 million more albums with "Genesis".
54. Collins is the second richest drummer in the world after Ringo Starr.
Now let's listen to the playlist that reviews his glorious career, that we have prepared especially for you: Spotify