I sat down this afternoon after a trip to the Credit Union, and I challenged myself. You know me, you know I am a congenital compiler and I love to put together these sort of mixtapes. Sometimes I put them on this blog and rock silently back and forth in the chair afterwards, anticipating the RIAA SWAT team parachuting in at any time to take me to Guantanamo Bay for posting copyrighted stuff.
So today I got home with several Vietnamese sandwiches (Banh=Mi) and dared myself to come up with an instant aggregation of tracks in honor of today's birthday lad, one of the world's most famous musicians. It got going (OK, this was an easy one because I am an indisputable Genesis expert) and just a couple of hours hence, look what I have brought you.
I have a confession to make: the two times I met this man, I was rotten to him for absolutely no reason, other than the excuse that I was 19 at the time. I treated him with such dismissive derision and mockery, even Tony Banks and Mike Rutherford were cracking up and making fun of him. This is something I've regretted ever since, even though it's something he probably gets a lot of... blamed as he often is -- and wrongly so -- for taking Genesis down the pure primrose path of puerile pop in the 1980s. Also not really his fault, as there were actually other folks in the band doing precisely the same thing.
Be all that as it may, no one who's been doing this music shit for as long as he has deserves that kind of treatment, so if I met him now I'd apologize even though he likely has no memory of those two days in 1986. You get older, you start to appreciate how hard it all is: the revolting music "industry" riven with sycophants and thieves, the endless touring that destroys your marriage by taking you away from your family 9 months a year, the assholes accosting you in front of your bandmates and needling you about your artistic choices in life.
So here we are: three Phils born over the course of these two days, the 30th and the 31st. The subject of this post (there'll be another, entirely different Phil or two tomorrow) is 63 years young today and I was pleased to hear that he's better after injuring himself on the last G tour, apparently playing Los Endos at the drums like a man 40 years his junior. This prog rock stuff'll kill you if you're not in shape to play it, I'll tell you what. Sometimes even if you are.
This disc tells a small part of the story, almost exclusively through B-sides and unusual tracks on other peoples' LPs from the period leading to him blowing up the world with his first two solo records in the early 1980s. You even get my (seamless, labor-intensive and entirely unnecessary) edit that joins It's Yourself (a Genesis B-side left off of A Trick of the Tail) with its lost mate, the aforementioned Los Endos. And an absolutely devastating version of Ripples (originally from the same album) taken from an unreleased 1980 live set documenting the legendary Genesis residence at the Lyceum Theatre in May of 1980 that blows my socks clean off every time.
I stuck to tracks where he's front and center singing, as well as a few live selections where he does that and then sprints back to the kit to flail mercilessly until it's time to sing again. This isn't meant to be anything but a representation of some of the weirder tracks people are less likely to be familiar with... sorry in advance for not including any of the Brian Eno cuts he plays on where Brand X is the backing group, but I was trying to focus on vocal stuff from before he fell into the fluff generator. All in all, this is a great tape, even if I just put it together this afternoon on the fly, straight off the top of my pointed little head.
You Might Recall
01 Star of Sirius (Steve Hackett, 1975)
02 Vancouver (Genesis, 1978)
03 God If I Saw Her Now (Anthony Phillips, 1977)
04 You Might Recall (Genesis, 1980)
05 Inside and Out (Genesis, 1977)
06 Entangled (Genesis live, 1976)
07 Don't Make Waves (Brand X, 1979)
08 Which Way the Wind Blows (Anthony Phillips, 1977)
09 More Fool Me (Genesis live, 1973)
10 Ripples (Genesis live, 1980)
11 The Fountain of Salmacis (Genesis live, 1978)
12 It's Yourself (Genesis 1976) >
13 Los Endos (Genesis 1976)
14 Silver Song (Anthony Phillips, 1974)
Total time: 1:19:34
498 MB FLAC/January 2014 archive link
Love him or hate him, you can't deny that he is still one of the most fluid and powerful drummers on Earth, and as a vocalist he's made literally trillions of middle-aged housewives swoon at the mere thought of his solo catalog. So please accept this assembly of tracks from before he was such a household name and celebrate with me the life and work of Phil Collins, born January 30, 1951. --J.