Cyberbullying, cyberracism, cybersexism, hey, call whoever whatever names you like. One thing making the rounds this week was some jerk’s petition to demand Phil Collins not make a comeback to music. How many other rock musicians can say they’ve done that? Anyone with an ethical bone in his or her body knows that we have entered a really weird cultural period, dominated by the Internet’s insidious role in life, every fool’s newfound outlet to spew whatever crap he or she wants, no matter how idiotic or hurtful.It tells the story of a fledgling musician, fighting for her art.Times were good/She never thought about the future/She just did what she would. Eventually, all the artist was left with was a memory of her moment in the spotlight, what it felt like to have the audience cry You’re the one we’ve waited for. He spent the ’70s in relative obscurity, the man behind the kit in what was then a progressive rock band and something of a niche act.Genesis was real rock and roll, and I was their real fan. He was an adjunct, a perk—another artist to know and to say I knew.
And that’s when a funny thing happened: People welcomed the news.
It’s hard to catch hold of just why people came to hate Phil Collins so passionately and so particularly.
It wasn’t only because his music was inescapable on the radio.
A boy in my Grade 6 class had been raving about Genesis’s new album Abacab for days on end while I was still listening to and the Carpenters, agitating to move on.
But I was afraid of rock and roll, of its aggression and sexuality.