One of three kids, Phil grew up in a family that adopted imagination and drive. His older brother, Clive, would go to develop into an expert cartoonist, while his sister competed as an ice skater.
From a very young age, Phil demonstrated a taste for the stage and music. His love for the drums started in the age of 5, when he was given a toy drum kit. From the age of 12, Collins had a real pair of drums and played every opportunity he could get. When he was 13 Collins, a gifted performer, was offered the opportunity to play the part of the Artful Dodger in the London production of Oliver!. To take on the part, Collins left the Chiswick Grammar School along with his parents approval, and registered in the Barbara Speake Stage School.
Your decision to depart his old school, while not a simple one, proved to be a good choice.
More significantly, Collins teamed with a couple of fellow pupils to form his first band, The Real Thing. The three-year old group, fronted by lead singer Peter Gabriel, urgently wanted a change. And Collins appeared to give a discharge. Within the following five years, the group churned out five studio albums, along with a live record from a concert tour in America.
In 1975, Collins became the face of Genesis when Gabriel left the group to set out on a solo career. The group had auditioned some 400 vocalists to replace their front man, before turning inward and giving the baton to Collins. The change from Gabriel to Collins was important. Unlike his predecessor, Collins did not rule the stage with intricate costumes. The music, also, slowly evolved from the heady, conceptual things that defined the group’s early sound, toward a more radio-friendly fashion.
Collins, who also performed frequently together with the jazz band Brand X, shortly started researching his own solo work. In 1981 he reach the airwaves with his first solo record, Face Value. The record, backed by the most popular single “In the Air Tonight,” proved to be a giant hit. A year after, Collins released his second solo album, Hello, I Must Be Going, which contained a couple of popular singles: “You Can Not Hurry Love” and “I Do Not Care Anymore”.
In 1985 Collins ruled the charts again with his third solo album, No Jacket Required.
With Genesis, also, Collins presented he had the golden touch. The group scored a No. 1 single in 1986 with the hit “Invisible Touch.”
Collins additionally demonstrated his abilities as an actor. In 1988 he made his big screen debut in the movie Buster. He also composed a tune for the film, “Two Hearts”, which earned him an Academy Award nomination as well as a Golden Globe award for The Best Original Song. In all, Collins proved to have among the defining voices of the 1980s.
Today, Collins, a father of five, is more a family man than the usual musician. In March 2011, he made the transition official when Collins, who fought some well-being problems including a spinal problem that compelled him to quit playing the drums, declared he was retiring from music. “I don’t fit in that world,” said Collins, who chose instead to help raise his two young sons with his third wife, Orianne.