Genesis! Phil Collins! Peter Gabriel! GREAT Music Biography! The Sum Of Their Parts!

“I didn’t want to NOT be the drummer,” Collins says in a clip from the Showtime documentary. “This is what I did. ‘This is my territory”

It’s Time For “Genesis!”

new Genesis documentary

Before I explain why you will be humming Genesis for the rest of the day, let’s begin with the greatest Genesis song of the Phil Collins era: the “prog” pop/rock majesty of “Turn It On Again…”

genesis in 1967

“Turn It On Again” is pure 80’s, but did you know that the band Genesis formed in 1967? Did you know that Peter Gabriel was the lead singer? Did you know he dressed like this?

Here is a publicity photo of the band at the same time – note that Gabriel is more elaborately attired than his bandmates…

Peter Gabriel outfits

“Genesis: Sum of the Parts” – is a new documentary about the band that is airing on Showtime right now – it traces the band’s sonic development from prog-rockers to pop-rock sensations, and it also spends time on the individual members’ solo careers.

genesis 2014

Cue The Controversy!

The story of Genesis is fascinating for a number of reasons, including the controversy that lives now, as guitarist Steve Hackett recently spoke out against this project on his Facebook page, calling it “a biased account of Genesis history” that ignored his solo work.

However, a DVD release of the documentary, along with a compilation box set with Genesis classics and three tracks from each member’s solo work, is due to be released, so Hackett’s solo songs will be heard…

best genesis songs

This is the Genesis most people knew: Phil Collins, Tony Banks and Mike Rutherford – they were one of the biggest bands of the 80’s…this was after Hackett left, and well after the band’s original lead singer, Peter Gabriel left as well…

The Peter Gabriel-led Genesis is highlighted by their masterpiece “The Lamb Lies Down On Broadway”, with this classic song, “The Carpet Crawlers”

classic Genesis

The entire band takes part in this documentary, including a candid group conversation about the band. The doc includes a great bit of friction between Tony Banks and Peter Gabriel. The singer left after “The Lamb Lies Down On Broadway” to go solo, because he felt his musical direction wasn’t the same as the bands. And his choice of creative attire didn’t necessarily amuse the others either. Tony Banks confirms his disdain for “Broadway” right in front of a bemused Gabriel, saying flatly of the “Lamb Lies Down” project:

“I didn’t like it. Still don’t.”

best genesis songs

“Alive At Both Ends But A Little Dead In The Middle…”

Genesis fans know this line from “Squonk!”, the first song from the band after Gabriel left. As Phil Collins sings it beautifully but also says he had NO intention of taking over the lead singer role…

“I didn’t want to NOT be the drummer,” Collins says in a clip from the Showtime documentary. “This is what I did. ‘This is my territory!”

And continue to drum he did, as well as sing all of the band’s biggest hits!

phil collins

As the documentary points out, when the band auditioned replacement singers, Collins would always sing the part to them first…but no one who came in sounded as good as he did!

So Collins became lead singer, but as he said, he didn’t give up the drums, and Genesis continued on…


Here is that classic song “Squonk”, from their first album without Gabriel, performed live from 1980…

best phil collins music

“Abacab” And Beyond!

The band refined its sound and soon became a hit machine, with a great mix of progressive rock and pop sensibility, like this classic song “Abacab!”

“In The Air Tonight!”

And of course, Collins had a huge solo career as well, including the iconic “In The Air Tonight” – this music video has almost fifty million views on youtube!


Genesis continued to record and tour throughout the 80’s and early 90’s…here is their hit “I Can’t Dance” from the 1993 Billboard Music Awards…

And then the band was no more…until now – check out this terrific documentary from Showtime, the candid conversations between band members is great!

genesis 2014

And even though Guitarist Steve Hackett is upset, the music project will soon include some of his solo work, so enjoy it all!


Categories: 70's Cinema, Awards, Books / Media, British Cinema, Classic Rock, Cult Movies, documentary films, London, Music, Obscure Music, Talent/Celebrities, TV Show, Uncategorized

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29 replies

  1. g is for great choices! genesis is and was, one of my favorite bands ever, loved their music.. I met them once when I was a cocktail waitress at a hotel they were staying at while in town for a concert. came in at the end of the night, in Hawaiian shirts, sat at the bar, under the radar, low key. really friendly conversation with them. never forget it and glad to hear about the doc.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Two of your photos above, the Slipperman costume on stage and the triple panel below it from Supper’s Ready are actually photos of a tribute band from Montreal called The Musical Box. After a close inspection I think you’ll agree that that is not Rutherford in the former photo and that is not Gabriel, but Denis Gagne in the latter.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. How interesting! The Genesis I’ve always known is actually the one with Peter Gabriel in – I haven’t listened to any of their songs after he left! We had a video of their music videos at home when I was a kid and it was my favourite thing to watch – they were so strange!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I love Genesis too and Phil Collins has a special place in our hearts as his kids were raised in the Vancouver area.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Bravo! I have followed Genesis from the beginning…I love both era’s the before and after…Thank you for putting it all together..Brilliant!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Reblogged this on johnrieber and commented:

    Genesis is reforming and going on tour – but without Peter Gabriel – and if you’ve seen this terrific documentary, you know why! Check it out:


  7. I love Genesis and appreciated your tribute to them. I didn’t see the 2014 documentary–I’ll have to watch that!



  1. My Favorite “G” Songs! Beatles! James Bond! Grand Funk’s “American Band!” – johnrieber
  2. These “Songs For Sunday” All Have A “G”! Genesis! Gorillaz! Steely Dan, McCartney And James Bond Too! – johnrieber
  3. Phil Collins At “Face Value!” Classic Album Series On Amazon! Kelly Clarkson “Covers” Collins! – johnrieber
  4. “Sunday Songs” In The Key Of “G!” Beatles! Blur! Genesis! Hall & Oates And More! – johnrieber
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  6. These “Songs With A ‘G’” Have Genesis! Gorillaz! “Goldinger” And The Origin Of Green Day Too! – johnrieber

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