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Phil Collins
The drummer who also became the vocalist of Genesis may have taken a self-imposed sabbatical from a recording career but Phil Collins hints at a reunion with his former bandmates ~ “We are still good friends,” he says. Collins is clear about his future as a performing artist as he pursues last year’s The First Final Farewell Tour ~ the title of the tour which is a joking nod to some of the seemingly endless farewell tours of fellow musicians ~ in the Middle East, with his debut in Dubai at the Autodrome on November 10, 2005.

As the surrounding lights dimmed at 9.30 p.m. and the stage lights lit up, they showed a layout with two massive video screens on either side (which eventually focused mainly on Phil Collins throughout the concert), with projected lights and shapes flashed onto the stage backdrop during the course of the concert.

Two drum kits and a percussion kit were placed in front. When Phil Collins strode onto the stage, clothed in a black long sleeve shirt and trousers, he immediately sat at the drums and commenced a solo before he was joined by drummer Chester Thompson on the other side of the stage. As percussionist Luis Conte also joined in the rhythmic beat melee, the capacity audience of 15,000 was awed by the consistent, systematic beats shared by the three musicians.

As Collins left his drum kit to sing Something Happened On The Way To Heaven, colourful lights lit up and revealed his entire band on stage, including his backup singers and the four members of Vine Street Horns.

It was a hits fest, as Collins moved into Take A Look At Me Now, the Grammy-winning song from Against All Odds, which had an interesting and effective saxophone solo from Gerald Albright, followed by the uptempo Don’t Lose My Number, the soft One More Night (described by Collins as a song that “some of you might have had sex to” leading to the expected audience smiles and laughter), and the mid-tempo Can’t Stop Loving You. Collins’s version of True Colours, popularised by Cyndi Lauper, was interestingly rearranged. Phil brought all the backup singers upfront with him, and they mostly sang the song a capella.

Between verses, music was provided as interludes but, as soon as singing commenced, the musicians stopped playing. Other “covers” included the Mindbenders’ ballad from the ‘60s, Groovy Kind Of Love, and the Diana Ross and the Supremes’ foot-tapping, finger-snapping You Can’t Hurry Love (composed by the famous Holland-Dozier-Holland trio who, obviously having a tremendous influence on Collins, resulted in Collins composing Two Hearts with one-third of the trio, Lamont Dozier), which quickly followed the rendition of the Supremes’ track.

You can read the rest of our feature on Phil Collins in the November 2005 issue of The Record Music Magazine available at your local newsagent.


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