Phil Collins: 15 Interesting Facts You Didn’t Know

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Phil Collins is one of the most iconic artists of the 1980s and is still widely recognized today. Collins may be 65 years old, but he has still remained relevant, and many new artists sample his material. In light of this, here, we present our list of 15 things you probably didn’t know about Phil Collins.

Number Fifteen: He Worked With Eric Clapton

In 1985, Collins produced a few tracks on Clapton’s album, Behind The Sun. He also produced a track for Howard Jones, which was the hit, “No One Is to Blame.” Collins played drums on the track.

Number Fourteen: He Holds a Special Distinction for Live Aid

Collins was the only Live Aid performer who performed at both the U.S. concert and the U.K. concert. The two concerts took place at JFK Stadium in Philadelphia and Wembley Stadium in the U.K., respectively.

Number Thirteen: He Has Written a Book

Collins is known to be an expert on the Battle of the Alamo in Texas, and he wrote a book about it! The book is called The Alamo and Beyond: A Collector’s Journey.

Number Twelve: He Has Won Seven Grammys

But does this really come as a surprise? He is wildly talented and has won many awards. He has also won six Brit Awards, three American Music Awards, an Oscar, two Golden Globe Awards and a Disney Legend Award in 2002. He was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2010 as a member of Genesis.

Number Eleven: He Had More Top 40 Hits on the Billboard Hot 100 During the 1980s Than Any Other Artist

Collins thrived in the 1980s. And this is just proof of that.

Number Ten: He Is in an Elite Group of Three People

Collins is one of just three people in the world who have sold more than 100 million albums around the world as part of a group and as solo musicians. The other two musicians are Paul McCartney and Michael Jackson.

Number Nine: He Announced His Retirement, But He Didn’t Really Retire

In 2011, Collins announced his retirement. However, he continued to write songs, and he said in 2013 that he was considering returning. There were even rumors of a collaboration between Collins and Adele floating around recently!

Number Eight: He Taught Himself How to Play Music

As a child, Collins wanted to play music so badly that he taught himself how to play the drums. He even developed his own system of musical notation.

Number Seven: He Is Multi-Talented

Collins not only taught himself how to play drums, but he also can sing (duh), and he plays piano, can act and is an accomplished producer. He is also an actor! He played the lead in 1988’s Buster, and he has also appeared in Calamity the Cow and The Jungle Book 2.

Number Six: Phil Collins Made Some Cameos Where You Might Expect

Though you might have been surprised to hear the films he was in above, did you know he was also in Chitty Chitty Bang Bang as a child? He appeared in The Beatles’ “A Hard Day’s Night” as well.

Number Five: His Fist Record Deal Was With a Group

Collins first got a record deal as a drummer with a group named Hickory. The group soon changed their name to Flaming Youth by 1969.

Number Four: He Answered an Ad That Genesis Put Out

The band Genesis had put out an ad looking for “…a drummer sensitive to acoustic music, and 12-string acoustic guitarist.” Collins answered the ad, and the rest is history.

Number Three: He Auditioned at Peter Gabriel’s Parents House

The audition for the part of the drummer in Genesis was held at Peter Gabriel’s parents’ house. He arrived early and let other people audition before he did. By the time his audition rolled around, he had memorized the songs.

Number Two: Phil Collins Also Sang Lead Vocals

Though Collins landed the role of the drummer in Genesis, he also sang lead vocals on two songs. Those songs are “For Absent Friends” and “More Fool Me.”

Number One: He Worked With ABBA

It’s true. In 1982, Collins works with ABBA member Frida’s solo album, which was titled Something’s Going On.

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