Tomorrow night, Showtime (which, like Radio.com, is owned by CBS) will air the long anticipated Genesis documentary, Sum of the Parts.
The doc traces their entire career, from their early days as an experimental college band in the late 1960s to being multi-platinum stadium headliners in the ’80s and ’90s.
In this exclusive clip, the band’s longtime manager Tony Smith and some of the members discuss Phil Collins‘ move from behind the drums to become the lead singer.
Collins joined the band in 1970, in time for their third album, 1971’s Nursery Cryme. In his five albums with the band, he’d sung backing vocals on a number of songs, even taking lead vocals twice — on “For Absent Lovers” from Nursery Cryme and “More Fool Me” from 1973’s Selling England By The Pound.
But when frontman Peter Gabriel decided to leave Genesis to pursue a solo career, the band couldn’t find a suitable replacement. Not for lack of trying; they auditioned several singers, with Collins attempting to guide the hopeful frontmen, to no avail. Of course, years later Collins would go on to become a major pop star in his own right. But in the mid-’70s, he was very comfortable to remain behind the drum kit.
“I didn’t want to not be the drummer,” he says. “This is what I did. This was my territory. ‘Don’t send me out there with the microphone!’ I didn’t want to do that! As far as I could remember, we did revisit the [audition] tapes, [asking] ‘Is there really nobody [else] we’ve heard?’ And there wasn’t.”