Phil Collins is an artist who doesn’t take himself too seriously. The solo musician and former member of Genesis has written a memoir titled, Not Dead Yet, as you do. He has been on the receiving end of some jokes but he takes them all with good humour. Ahead of his Australian and New Zealand tours, The AU Review have put together our five favourite Phil Collins moments.
1. What do you do if you’re unsure what theme to choose for your music video? If you’re Collins, you try a little bit of everything and document the decision process. Collins did this for “(Billy) Don’t Lose My Number.” In it he parodies several music videos including The Police’s “Every Breath You Take,” Elton John’s “I’m Still Standing” and David Lee Roth’s “California Girls,” as well as films like Mad Max 2 and some old Westerns.
2. Do you remember… when Phil Collins was an actor? He played the lead in Buster, a bio-pic about Messer Edwards, one of the thieves who participated in the UK’s Great Train Robbery. For this film he covered, “A Groovy Kind of Love” and his music video was mostly made up of scenes from it. Collins also wrote and sang, “Two Hearts” for the soundtrack. This music video features Collins as all four members of a band named The Four Pound Notes as well as a cameo appearance by British DJ Tony Blackburn.
3. Phil Collins obviously likes playing multiple roles in his music videos. Perhaps it’s a homage to “Coming Up” by former Beatle, Paul McCartney. When Collins covered the Motown classic, “You Can’t Hurry Love” he channelled his inner Diana Ross and The Supremes by shimmying away as no less than three different dancers.
4. That infamous Cadbury commercial with the Gorilla playing drums introduced “In the Air Tonight” to a new generation of fans. The song has been the subject of an urban legend where people thought it was about a drowning incident where a victim was too far away to be saved. In reality, Phil Collins improvised the song during a tumultuous period when he was divorcing his first wife, Andrea Bertorelli.
5. The UK television show Skins had a fantastic soundtrack. Case in point–series four where Effy Stonem is told she can leave the psychiatric hospital and counsellor, John Foster dances to “Easy Lover.” That song was practically written about Effy. For those wanting to watch the music video look out for Earth Wind & Fire’s Philip Bailey as Collins attempts to swap mics with him and choose costumes. It’s not quite Mick Jagger and David Bowie’s “Dancing in the Street” but it’s not far off.
Honourable mention: while this isn’t a Phil Collins song who doesn’t love an interesting bit of trivia? A 13-year-old Phil Collins had an uncredited role in The Beatles’s debut film, A Hard Day’s Night. We’ll probably never be able to spot him, but Collins was apparently in the audience playing a seated fan wearing a necktie.
Phil Collins plays Australia and New Zealand in January and February 2019. For more information and tickets please head HERE.
PHIL COLLINS’ NOT DEAD YET: LIVE! TOUR
BRISBANE – SATURDAY 19 JANUARY, SUNCORP STADIUM
SYDNEY – MONDAY 21, TUESDAY 22 & WEDNESDAY 23 JANUARY, QUDOS BANK ARENA
ADELAIDE – FRIDAY 25 JANUARY, ADELAIDE OVAL
PERTH – MONDAY 28 & TUESDAY 29 JANUARY, RAC ARENA
MELBOURNE – FRIDAY 1 & SATURDAY 2 FEBRUARY, AAMI PARK