This week we on Pop Fix we reflect on one of the most prolific hit songwriters. His music had an unprecedented impact on our music community. In this episode we hear from two of his fans, rock and roll hall of famers Lamont Dozier of Motown and David Crosby.
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In 1980 Phil Collins and Genesis landed a #14 smash with Misunderstanding from the wonderful platinum album DUKE that was there first LP to hit #1 in the UK. Then Phil turned right around and released his perfect debut album Face Value that hit #1 in the UK and #7 in the US it featured his classic “In the Air Tonight “that went to #2 in the UK and #19 here in the US which is, a great example of a song that was far bigger than it’s chart position. it is still played every day across the world and beloved in pop culture, especially for the bombastic drum crash.
In 1981 he went back with Genesis for the multi platinum album ABACAB another UK #1 with several hit singles on both sides of the Atlantic then immediately released the solo set “Hello I Must Be Going” hitting the top ten worldwide, showing of his Rand B roots with the Motown remake “ You Can’t Hurry Love’ that went to top of the charts in his native England and became his first top 10 hit in the US. OK, are you still with me? Because we haven’t even gotten to his peak yet!
After all that success, he released the 4x platinum self titled Genesis album in 1983 that hit number one in the UK and contained the #6 hit “That’s All” with it’s brilliant and catchy chorus. paving the way for his first solo number one hit the heart wrenching ballad “Against All Odds” which was nominated for an Oscar. The Oscars didn’t even let him perform his own song. He instead sat in the audience as dancer Ann Reinking performed a mostly lip-synced vocal performance accompanied by a dance routine. Phil has never received the respect he so rightly deserves.
The 1985’s #1 blockbuster “No Jacket Required” which was number one in every country in the world and put the likes of Michael Jackson, Prince and Madonna on notice from a guy that looked more like your uncle Charlie than a pop idol. It was 12 times platinum in america alone, with global sales that have been estimated at over 20 million. Stacked with hit singles galore including the number one hits Sussudio and One More Night as well as the top tens Take Me Home and Don’t Lose my number, the album crossed over to just about every genre and chart and won the Grammy for album of the year.
In 1986 with Genesis and created the 6 x time platinum “Invisible Touch” it was written entirely through group improvisation with no material developed prior it’s recording. With the Invisible Touch album Genesis became the first band and foreign act to have 5 top ten hits from one record. They hit number one with the title track and the top 5 with Land of Confusion with it’s memorable spitting image music video along with ’ Tonight Tonight Tonight, which was widely seen in a Michelob ad campaign, along with the two ballads Into Deep and Throwing it All Away.
Then in 88 Phil dropped three new solo songs on the soundtrack to his film Buster, two of which were released as singles and went to number one, the remake of “Groovy Kind of Love and Two Hearts, which he co-wrote with his Motown hero Lamont Dozier who wrote Most of the Supremes and Four Tops hits. Here’s what Lamont had to say about it:
Going into the 90s Phil would pull off the double whammy yet again with a massive hit album and hit songs both solo and with Genesis. Starting In 1990 He released the solo record, but, seriously which along with it’s first single the socially conscious ode to homelessness “Another Day In Paradise” would go to number one simultaneously . David Crosby sang on it with Phil and it won the Grammy for record of the year. Both the album and song went to number one in pretty much ever single country in the world. The next three singles, I wish it would rain, do you remember and Something happened on the way to heaven would all hit the top five and was followed by a massive world tour.
The second that was over, he reconvened with Genesis, for the Multi-platinum smash “We Cant’ Dance” that went to #1 in the UK and #4 in the US. It included four more hit singles with “I Can’t Dance” , No Son of Mine Hold on My Heart, and Jesus he knows me. All of this happened when grunge was taking over and the musical landscape was completely different. Phil would finish the 90s off with several more hit solo albums and win an Oscar for “you’ll be in my heart” from Disney’s Tarzan.
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