Phil Collins Wanted To Replace Keith Moon In The Who

Phil Collins Wanted To Replace Keith Moon In The Who | Society Of Rock Videos

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He Liked Playing With The Legendary Band

In an interview with Classic Rock magazine, Phil Collins revealed that he offered to leave Genesis so he can replace the late rocker Keith Moon in The Who. He said, “I played Uncle Ernie in Tommy, which I loved doing though it was very politically incorrect – playing a paedophile. But it was great cos I was with The Who.”

He then added, “I was working with Townshend just after Moon died, and I said to him: “Have you got anybody to play the drums? Cos I’d love to do it. I’ll leave Genesis.” And Pete said: “Fuck, we’ve just asked Kenney Jones.” Cos Kenney Jones, unbeknown to most people, played on stuff when Keith was too out of it. He was far too polite for The Who. But I would have done the job. I would have joined them.”

In the same interview, he also shared how he ended up playing on George Harrison’s “All Things Must Pass.” Apparently, his manager received a call from Ringo Starr’s chauffeur and said they needed a percussionist. Collins added, “So I went down to Abbey Road and Harrison was there and Ringo and Billy Preston and Klaus Voormann and Phil Spector, and we started routining the song. No one told me what to play, and every time they started the song, Phil Spector would say: “Let’s hear guitar and drums,” or “Let’s hear bass and drums.” And I’m not a conga player, so my hands are starting to bleed. And I’m cadging cigarettes off Ringo – I don’t even smoke, I just felt nervous.”

And then, “After about two hours of this, Phil Spector says: “Okay congas, you play this time.” And I’d had my mic off, so everybody laughed, but my hands were shot. And just after that they all disappeared – someone said they were watching TV or something – and I was told I could go. A few months later I buy the album from my local record shop, look at the sleeve notes and I’m not there. And I’m thinking: “There must be some mistake!” But it’s a different version of the song, and I’m not on it.”

And the worst part is, he heard the tape of his performance years later and even he himself was far from impressed. “I rush off and listen to it, and straight away I recognise it. Suddenly the congas come in – too loud and just awful. And at the end of the tape you hear George Harrison saying: “Hey, Phil, can we try another without the conga player?” So now I know, they didn’t go off to watch TV, they went somewhere and said: “Get rid of him,” cos I was playing so badly.”

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