First and foremost this is a post about the band not the book, as I always try my best to steer clear of religion,as it always seems to cause arguments between people and that’s something I dislike immensely.Music has always been a great love of mine as I think ive said before and over the years I’ve amazed a vast collection of albums and singles and also a big live concert archive. This all started back in the 1970s with the first singles I got bought for me by my parents. Once at work any spare cash went on music mainly from Penny Farthing,Downtown or Radiogram record shops in my hometown. My first love was Genesis which started after buying the single “Turn it on Again” while still at school and happened during a time I had a huge crush on a girl in my class.
Genesis was formed in January 1967 at Charterhouse Public School, England, by members of the school band and the fledgling local rock band, The Anon.Tony Banks (keyboard) and Mike Rutherford (bass) teamed up with Peter Gabriel (flute, vocals), Anthony Phillips (guitar) and Chris Stewart (drums). In 1968, they signed to Decca and, with help from producer Jonathan King, they recorded their first two singles, and the album ‘From Genesis to Revelations’ (Chris Stewart had been replaced on drums by John Silver) but were generally unsuccessful.In 1970, the band came to the attention of Charisma, and with producer John Anthony they began to work on ‘Trespass’, a cult success.
After having replaced Phillips and Mayhew with Phil Collins and Steve Hackett, the classic Genesis line-up was in place, and the band went on their now legendary 1971 tour, a colourful line-up of strange performances. It was with ‘Foxtrot’, however, that Genesis scored their first major critical success, followed by ‘Selling England by the Pound’ in 1973. It soon made number three in the UK charts, gave the band a reputation in America, and also provided their first UK hit-single. A year later, Genesis (now big-time rock superstars) released the concept double album ‘The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway’. This album was also the last one to be made by the ‘original’ Genesis line-up.
In May 1975, Peter Gabriel announced his departure, and, almost two years later, Steve Hackett also left to embark upon a solo career.In 1978, Collins, Banks and Rutherford moved from their prog-rock origins towards a light rock sound of the type that would dominate the worldwide charts in the 1980s.
In 1982 Peter Gabriel was continuing his solo career, doing some experimental music and he had funded the WOMAD festival which faced economic disaster. This was due to its commercial failure,put down to lack of suitable transport to the venue and publicity. At the suggestion of his and Genesis’ manager Tony Smith he and his ex-band mates agreed to play together for a single show,along with Daryl Stuermer (second guitarist and bassist on live shows 1978-1992 & 2007), Chester Thompson, and fellow ex-member Steve Hackett (who appeared onstage during the encores after arriving late from South America). The revenues generated by the concert allowed the WOMAD creditors to be paid, the festival to be established and Gabriel to resume his solo career.
Six of the Best was the name chosen for the reunion concert it and took place on a wet 2nd October 1982 at National Bowl, in Milton Keynes, Buckinghamshire.The show was introduced by Jonathan King and the support bands for the concert included John Martyn, The Blues Band and Talk Talk.It was also the last time that the most well known members appeared on stage together.50,000 fans from all over the world came to see this “reunion”. At 7 p.m. sharp Tony, Mike, Phil, Chester and Daryl got on stage. Then a coffin, carried by four undertakers, could be seen in the spotlights. The coffin opened, and Peter climbed out off it in his”Rael”outfit, to start the concert immediately with Back In N.Y.C..Two hours full of enthusiasm, unique feelings, joy and fascination followed. As the top closing of this unbelievable time-voyage Steve Hackett did also appear to join his former band-colleagues at the two encores.
1.Back in N.Y.C.
2.Dancing with the Moonlit Knight (Excerpt)
3.The Carpet Crawlers
4.Firth of Fifth
5.The Musical Box
7.Turn It On Again (vocals: Phil Collins; drums: Peter Gabriel)
8.The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway
9.Fly on a Windshield
10.Broadway Melody of 1974
11.In the Cage
13.I Know What I Like (In Your Wardrobe) (guitar: Steve Hackett)
14.The Knife (guitar: Steve Hackett)
A number of albums were recorded during this period (late 1970’s and through the 1980’s), most of them extremely successful, but as I preferred the early stuff my admiration dwindle at little. But when, in March 1996, Phil Collins suddenly announced that he had left the band, the Genesis-era finally ended after a one album stint with new vocalist Ray Wilson.After much speculation regarding a reunion, Banks, Collins and Rutherford announced the “Turn it on Again” Tour on 7 November 2006; nearly 40 years after the band first formed. The tour took place during summer 2007, and played twelve countries across Europe, followed by a second leg in North America. The trio had wanted to reunite as a five-piece with Gabriel and Hackett for a live performance of the “Lamb Lies down on Broadway” While Gabriel reportedly agreed in principle to perform, he was unable to commit to a date. The European tour of 23 dates was a sell out and produced a live album and a live DVD the UK leg of the tour was as follows:
July 7 – London, UK, LIVE EARTH CONCERT (20 minute set)
July 7 – Manchester, UK Old Trafford Football Stadium
July 8 – London, UK Twickenham Stadium*
I did manage to see Genesis twice at Knebworth in 1990 and again at Twickenham* 17 years later in 2007 on their final tour.
The main band members all has solo careers with Phil Collins solo career being by far the biggest followed Peter Gabriel. Of all the solo careers Gabriel’s and Hackett’s still remain my favourite albums like PG 1,2,3 & 4 and Hackett’s Spectral Mornings & Defector. I managed also to see Peter Gabriel at Crystal Palace in 1983 and Phil Collins in 1990.
On Autumn Days when the weather is rotten outside I often delve into my music collection and remember the times when music and especially Genesis seemed the only important thing.Genesis often got lambasted by other music fans and by the press but their legacy as a group and solo artists is difficult to ignore.From Genesis I moved on to Yes,King Crimson,Van Der Graaf Generator then through the genres of music…sometimes occasionally revisiting the music of my youth.