Visible Touch: The Incredible Career Of Phil Collins

Phil Collins has had an outstanding, enviable, decades-long career in the music industry, and has thrilled audiences with hit after hit. His distinct vocals and impeccable skills on the drums have made him one of the most successful artists of all-time. Appealing to audiences of all ages, across the globe, Phil Collins is truly a legendary artist that has left an unmistakable footprint in the world of music. Song Hall reports that his skill set spans across his ability to stun his fans on the drums, sing his signature vocals with precision, and produce music that is perfectly orchestrated and absolutely infectious. A true triple threat in every way, he has dominated the music scene, releasing hit after hit, and shattering records along the way. His list of accolades are too many to mention, and one step at a time, this truly talented, musical genius rose to the highest levels of success, earning himself an astounding net worth of $260 million.

An Incredible Revelation

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Most musicians have studied hard to master their domain. Endless rehearsals and classes to perfect and refine their skills, and countless hours spent practicing to learn to read music and string together the notes to create the perfect sounds. This is where Phil Collins differed. From the tender age of 5 years old, after being gifted a toy drum set for Christmas, he knew he wanted to be a drummer.  What he didn’t know is that he would eventually become one of the most highly esteemed drummers of our time. Shockingly, what he also didn’t know… was how to read sheet music. That’s correct, Phil Collins, musician extraordinaire, never did learn how to read or write musical notations.

He strings together the musical elements of all of his songs by using a unique form of notation that he crafted all by himself. Collins has his own code, or musical language – a system which he derived on his own. This self-taught man has soared to superstardom by using the sheer genius of his own skill set and his very own musical language.

RELATED: Why Phil Collins’ 1981 Hit ‘In The Air Tonight’ Is Back In The Charts

From The Drums To The Microphone

There certainly aren’t many musicians that can take their talents that shine behind a drum set and transform them into vocal genius at the front of the stage. Phil Collins did just that. After auditioning to be the drummer in the band Genesis, Phil Collins found real success. The band gained critical acclaim, they were playing to sold out crowds, and there was no escaping their music on the airwaves. As a crucial part of the band, Phil was able to tour the world, and in 1975, Peter Gabriel, creating the opportunity for Phil Collins to step in and take over the lead vocals.

It was then that his personal life truly began to fuel Phil Collins’ musical career. His divorce from his first wife was a painful experience, which poured out of him and into his emotionally charged songs, leading to the release of his first solo album, Face Value. His song, In The Air Tonight, which represented the pain behind his divorce, is precisely what made Phil Collins a household name. The song was then featured on Miami Vice.

Riding the wave of his newfound success, Phil Collins then released the album No Jacket Required, which immediately led to chart topping hits , made it to number one in the United States and in the United Kingdom, and garnered a series of awards and accolades. By this time, the money was really rolling in, and the music was in full rotation, with many more successful albums and independent tours that sold out with ease.

Juggling Genesis And A Solo Career

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Phil Collins successfully managed to juggle his commitment to Genesis alongside his wildly successful solo career, simultaneously creating two incredible, full-time, musical income streams. He soon released … But Seriously, which featured the hit song Another Day In Paradise, and launched him into the number one spot once again.

This was happening at the same time that Genesis was soaring with the successful releases of Invisible Touch and We Can’t Dance, which were smashing records across the globe. The Things reports that; “In 1984, Collins started to write songs for film when he wrote Against All Odds, for the film of the same name. It earned him a spot on the top of the Billboard Hot 100 and earned him his first Grammy for Best Pop Vocal Performance by a Male.”

Disney managed to secure Phil Collins for the Tarzan soundtrack, and after releasing You’ll Be In My Heart for the movie, the song spent an astounding 19 weeks in the number one spot on the charts.

The Legend

Phil Collins continued to dabble in the world of acting throughout the span of his musical career, and his boundless energy and dedication to his craft led him to win Brit Awards, Grammys, Oscars, Academy Awards, Golden Globes, and many, many more. Over the span of his career, he has sold over 34.5 million albums in the United States alone, and an estimated 150 worldwide.

Those who think the success of Phil Collins belongs to the older generation that has enjoyed his 4-decade long career, stood corrected in 2020. In August of that year, a video of twins hearing Phil Collins’ In The Air Tonight for the first time, and reacting to the legendary drum solo that appears well into the song, went viral. This led to an 1100% increase of sales of this song.

Proving his longevity and lifelong commitment to sharing his talents with his adoring fans, Phil Collins announced a 2021 tour, and all signs lead to many more to come.

Truly a force to be reckoned with, and with an impressive list of accolades that is only as long as the list of talents he offers to the world, Phil Collins is truly a living legend in the world of music, touching the lives of generations of fans along the way.

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Sources: The Things, Song Hall, IMDB


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