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Phil Collins Air Drums

I was air-drumming to the nearly cymbal-free intensity of Genesis and Peter Gabriel albums as a kid, and later, when I went back and discovered Phil Collins’ early Genesis drumming, I realized what a genius he was. Collins played drums from the age of five and went to drama school, so he always understood the theatricality of drums. (I think I even hear him singing backing vocals in an Adam Ant record, Strip… am I crazy?) His distinctive gated-reverb drum sound was born in sessions for Peter Gabriel, but Phil was the one who made it epic. I was shocked and relieved when he allowed “In the Air Tonight” to be in this movie – I knew that the film’s intensity rested on this pivotal scene, where the comedy suddenly becomes emotional. The scene was a favorite of Todd Philips, who did something similar with “The Hangover” a year later. I’m still waiting for my paycheck (although I suspect Phil got a nice bonus)!

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