Phil Collins gets it. He was ubiquitous for a long time (some say too long) in the 1980s. Even he got tired of himself.
His autobiography, released in 2016, is a great read. It took me two years to get to it because I have this thing where I’m reluctant to give very much of my hard-earned money to a multi-millionaire. So I waited for a sale. $2.99 was more like it!
In my view, autobiographies are the most valuable kind of books. Collins is still haunted by the death of his Dad when Phil was 21. He’s the youngest of three, with siblings who are a professional cartoonist and a retired figure skater. Everybody’s family of origin story plays into who and what they become. And it doesn’t matter how old you get, those memories that shaped you, stay with you. Childhood is the great equalizer; the super wealthy also had young lives that weren’t necessarily spectacular. No amount of travel or fame can erase them.
But it’s the untold tales that give me a thrill. A prank pulled on Phil by George Harrison, his close friendships with Eric Clapton and Robert Plant, life on the road and seeing the world. The disappointments and embarrassments, on a global scale. His life now, as he tries to make up for his failings.
However, Collins’ first ex-wife says the book glosses over a lot of things, including an explosive temper and many affairs on the road. (A Daily Mail story on her side is HERE) He does admit to being a jerk, many times over. How many times can a person be expected to call themselves a jerk?
And as I write this, Phil’s on another major concert tour – one he predicted would never happen. I thought I knew a lot about Phil Collins but there were countless surprises in Not Dead Yet. I recommend it.