Author(s): Phil Collins
Not Dead Yetis Phil Collins' candid, witty, unvarnished story of the songs and shows, the hits and pans, his marriages and divorces, the ascents to the top of the charts and into the tabloid headlines. As one of only three musicians to sell over 100 million records both in a group and as a solo artist, Collins breathes rare air, but he has never lost his talent for crafting songs that touch listeners around the globe. This is the story of his epic career, from child actor to one of the most successful songwriters of the pop music era. A drummer since almost before he could walk, Collins received on-the-job training in the seedy, thrilling bars and clubs of 1960s swinging London before finally landing the drum seat in Genesis. Later he would step into the spotlight on vocals after the departure of Peter Gabriel, and compose the songs that would rocket him to international solo fame with the release of Face Valueand 'In the Air Tonight'. Whether he's recalling jamming with Eric Clapton and Robert Plant, pulling together a big band fronted by Tony Bennett, playing twice at Live Aid, or writing the Oscar-winning music for Disney's smash-hit animated film Tarzan, Collins keeps it intimate and his storytelling gift never wavers.
The memoir of one of the most divisive figures in rock history, having gone from making prog-rock weirdness in Genesis to ubiquitous mega-hits in the 1980s, was always likely to be colourful. But readers - whether fans of Phil Collins or not - will still find many surprising and revealing moments in Not Dead Yet, be they surreal (like being asked to host Prince Charles’ 40th birthday), triumphant (like how he feels being admired by the hip-hop community) or desolate (his struggles with alcoholism). Anecdotes are told candidly throughout and with no small dose of self-deprecation, whether they be about his love life or Live Aid, giving this rock auto-bio a three-dimensional aspect it could've easily lacked. Thomas, Book Grocer Northcote