If You Have Anything Bad to Say about Phil Collins, I Don’t Want to Hear It

The time has come for us nerds who really like Phil Collins to stand up. My friend and erstwhile musical collaborator Chris Seiler, who currently works as a sea, air, and space museum tour guide, has thrown down the gauntlet with this anecdote, originally posted to Facebook:

This will sound strange, but if you have anything bad to say about Phil Collins, I don’t want to hear it. He and his significant other, Dana Tyler, arranged a trip to our museum with his two kids and I got to walk them around. I asked them how long they wanted to stay and he replied “until we’re not having fun”. They stayed with me for two and a half hours. Very, very nice people. All four of them. I didn’t get to talk music with him, it really wasn’t the time or place for that, but I did get to talk to him a little about his experience with the Concorde jet, which is something I’ll get to pass on to people taking my tour.

If you have a problem with him as a musician, get over it. He was probably more surprised than you were when he became a superstar in the 80’s. He did some great drumming with the early prog-rock Genesis, was Robert Plant’s drummer of choice in the early 80’s and picked up the sticks when his buddy Eric Clapton called about playing the 2010 Prince’s trust concert, even though he had dislocated vertabre that made it almost impossible for him to sit behind a kit. He eventually became an incredibly entertaining, charismatic front man who made it cool to wear tennis shoes to prom. If you’re angry that he wrote the music for Tarzan, I’m sure your kids aren’t. Don’t rag on something that obviously isn’t written with you as the desired demographic. Instead, go find your old Abacab cassette and listen to “No Reply at All” or “Man on the Corner” and understand that he deserved his fame.

I agree with every word. Three points:

  1. Coincidentally, I read this just as I already had “Don’t Lose My Number” stuck in my head (technically I had my own version of it stuck in my head).
  2. Collins’ Tarzan soundtrack is awesome.
  3. Phil Collins is not the only really good songwriter in this post. Chris is an excellent songsmith himself.


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