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Phil Collins

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Bio

Phil Collins' ascent to the status of one of the most successful pop and adult contemporary singers of the '80s and beyond was probably as much a surprise to him as it was to many others. Balding and diminutive, the Genesis drummer-turned-vocalist was almost 30 years old when his first solo single, "In the Air Tonight," became a number two hit in his native U.K. (the song was a Top 20 hit in the U.S.). Between 1984 and 1990, Collins had a string of 13 straight U.S. Top Ten hits. Long before any of that happened, however, Collins was a child actor/singer who appeared as the Artful Dodger in the London production of Oliver! in 1964. (He also has a cameo in A Hard Day's Night, among other films.) He got his first break in music in his late teens, when he was chosen to be a replacement drummer in the British art rock band Genesis in 1970. (Collins maintained a separate jazz career with the band Brand X as well.) Genesis was fronted by singer Peter Gabriel. They had achieved a moderate level of success in the U.K. and the U.S. with elaborate concept albums, before Gabriel abruptly left in 1974. Genesis auditioned 400 singers without success, then decided to let Collins have a go. The result was a gradual simplifying of Genesis' sound and an increasing focus on Collins' expressive, throaty voice. And Then There Were Three... went gold in 1978, and Duke was even more successful. Collins made his debut solo album, Face Value, in 1981, which turned out to be a bigger hit than any Genesis album. It concentrated on Collins' voice, often in stark, haunting contexts such as the piano-and-drum dirge "In the Air Tonight," which sounded like something from John Lennon's debut solo album, John Lennon/Plastic Ono Band. During the '80s, Collins was enormously successful in balancing his continuing solo work with his membership in Genesis. In 1992, Genesis released We Can't Dance and began an extensive tour. Upon its completion, Collins released Both Sides in 1993, and the record became his first album not to produce a major hit single or go multi-platinum. In 1995, he announced that he was leaving Genesis permanently. The following year, he released Dance Into the Light. Although the album didn't chart highly, its subsequent supporting tour was a success. The Hits collection followed in 1998, and a year later Collins made his first big-band record, Hot Night in Paris. The song cycle Testify arrived in 2002, and his next studio-recorded solo release was 2010's Going Back, which saw him revisiting the Motown hits that so influenced him and featured three of the surviving Funk Brothers -- guitarists Eddie Willis and Ray Monette, and bassist Bob Babbitt. After some time out of the spotlight, much of it spent recovering from physical ailments, Collins returned in 2014 to play a couple of songs at his sons' school and to write songs with Adele. Soon after, he began work on reissuing his solo albums, sorting through the archives for demos and live recordings to flesh them out. Beginning in early 2016, Warner Music began releasing the discs in pairs, with new portraits of Collins on the covers in place of the original images. While rumors of autobiographies and world tours swirled, Collins actually did return to the stage in March of 2016, performing at Little Dreams Foundation Benefit Gala in Miami. A collection of his solo singles, simply titled The Singles, appeared in summer 2016, spanning three discs and unfolding the Collins solo story chronologically. It served as a precursor to his much-anticipated autobiography titled Not Dead Yet: The Memoir, released later in the year. ~ William Ruhlmann
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Albums by
Phil Collins

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    30 songs

    On Air

    The Essential Going Back [Deluxe]

    14 songs

    On Air

    The Essential Going Back [LP]

    24 songs

    On Air

    No Jacket Required [Deluxe Edition]

    18 songs

    On Air

    Testify

    13 songs

    On Air

    Dance Into The Light

    23 songs

    On Air

    Dance Into The Light (Deluxe Edition)

    21 songs

    On Air

    Hello, I Must Be Going [Deluxe Edition]

    12 songs

    On Air

    Face Value (Remastered)

    21 songs

    On Air

    Both Sides

    24 songs

    On Air

    Face Value [Deluxe Edition]

    25 songs

    On Air

    Going Back [Bonus Tracks]

    11 songs

    On Air

    No Jacket Required

    12 songs

    On Air

    ...But Seriously

    10 songs

    On Air

    Hello, I Must Be Going! [2016 Remastered Version]

    13 songs

    On Air

    Golden Slumbers: A Father's Love

    25 songs

    On Air

    ...But Seriously [Deluxe Edition]

    1 song

    On Air

    You've Been in Love (That Little Bit Too Long)

    1 song

    On Air

    True Colors

    1 song

    On Air

    Dance Into the Light

    1 song

    On Air

    Oddball (Demo - Do You Know, Do You Care?) [2016 Remastered]

    1 song

    On Air

    ...And So To F (Live)

    1 song

    On Air

    If Leaving Me Is Easy

    1 song

    On Air

    Come With Me

    1 song

    On Air

    Can't Stop Loving You [Japanese Version]

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Top Songs by
Phil Collins

  1.   Song
    Popularity
  2.   In the Air Tonight
  3.   Against All Odds (Take a Look at Me Now)
  4.   You Can't Hurry Love
  5.   One More Night
  6.   Sussudio
  7.   Two Hearts
  8.   A Groovy Kind of Love
  9.   Take Me Home
  10.   Another Day in Paradise
  11.   You'll Be in My Heart
  12.   I Don't Care Anymore
  13.   Don't Lose My Number
  14.   I Wish It Would Rain Down
  15.   Separate Lives
  16.   True Colors
  17.   Everyday
  18.   Strangers Like Me
  19.   Do You Remember?
  20.   I Missed Again
  21.   Father to Son
  22.   Don't Let Him Steal Your Heart Away
  23.   Easy Lover
  24.   Something Happened on the Way to Heaven
  25.   Son of Man
  26. See All Songs

Stations & Shows Featuring
Phil Collins

    On Air

    20 Greatest Music Hoaxes

    On Air

    '80s #1 Hits

    On Air

    '80s Hits

    On Air

    Top Disney Classics

    On Air

    Broken Heart

    On Air

    Classic Hits

    On Air

    Nothing But Love Songs

    On Air

    When Critics Were Wrong: The Countdown

    On Air

    A Great Big World: I Am The DJ

    On Air

    Classic Soft Hits