Phil Collins announces ‘Plays Well With Others’ boxed set

Phil Collins has compiled a 59 track collection of his collaborative highlight in the shape of Plays Well With Others. The compilation will be released as a 4 CD boxed set and as a digital download on September 28th via Rhino Records. The following week, Collins will begin his Not Dead Yet, Live! tour on October 5th in Ft. Lauderdale, his first major North American tour in 12 years.

Plays Well With Others a boxed set about the byways of a career that stretches from the ersatz psychedelia of Flaming Youth, through the legendary 70s recordings with Brand X, Brian Eno, Robert Fripp and John Cale and into the superstar era of the 80s, when Collins became the go-to man for legends in need of a fresh lease of life. It extends into the years when he had the status to do whatever he wanted. Form a big band with Quincy Jones conducting and Tony Bennett singing? Why the hell not!

The title comes from a joke gift that happened to contain a profound truth. Chester Thompson, the man who became Genesis’s day-to-day drummer once Collins had become the frontman, arranged to have a special birthday present made for him. It wasn’t a hugely expensive gift – just a t-shirt. On the front, Thompson had a slogan printed to reflect his bandmate’s willingness to take his drums along to pretty much any session, his pleasure in working as a producer to help musicians he respected make the records they wanted: “Plays well with others.”

Collins started branching out in the mid-70s to delve into parts of his musical taste that didn’t fit with Genesis’s sound. The band’s producer John Anthony recognized Collins as a musician with the appetite and ability to adapt to different musical environments. “He was producing all kinds of records, and he would use me because he loves good drumming,” remembers Collins. “We used to go into Trident Studios at midnight, just for the fun of playing, and go home at six or seven in the morning. I enjoyed the possibility of just playing and occasionally being paid for it, and occasionally not. It wasn’t for money, it was just for the hell of playing.”

Working on Peter Gabriel’s third solo album resulted in Collins and engineer Hugh Padgham stumbling across the gated reverb drum sound that would dominate 80s pop. That was first heard on Gabriel’s track “Intruder” and later when hit the charts when used in the drum fill in Collins’ signature hit “In The Air Tonight.”

In the wake of his solo success with the Face Value album, Collins became sought after by already successful artists who needed to do something different, helping Adam Ant, Eric Clapton, Robert Plant, and Abba’s Frida into new eras in their careers.

Plays Well With Others is a set that captures the dizzying variety of one of the most successful stories in music history. That’s what has earned him the respect of so many musicians of so many different genres – the Urban Renewal tribute album, represented here by Lil’ Kim, being a classic example.

4 CD

CD 1: 1969 – 1982

  1. Guide Me Orion – Flaming Youth
  2. Knights (Reprise) – Peter Banks
  3. Don’t You Feel It – Eugene Wallace
  4. I Can’t Remember, But Yes – Argent
  5. Over Fire Island – Brian Eno
  6. Savannah Woman – Tommy Bolin
  7. Pablo Picasso – John Cale
  8. Nuclear Burn – Brand X
  9. No-One Receiving – Brian Eno
  10. Home – Rod Argent
  11. M386 – Brian Eno
  12. And So To F – Brand X
  13. North Star – Robert Fripp
  14. Sweet Little Mystery – John Martyn
  15. Intruder – Peter Gabriel
  16. I Know There’s Something Going On – Frida
  17. Pledge Pin – Robert Plant
  18. Lead Me To The Water – Gary Brooker

CD 2: 1982 – 1991

  1. In The Mood – Robert Plant
  2. Island Dreamer – Al Di Meola
  3. Puss ‘n’ Boots – Adam Ant
  4. Walking On The Chinese Wall – Philip Bailey
  5. Do They Know It’s Christmas (Feed The World) – Band Aid
  6. Just Like A Prisoner – Eric Clapton
  7. Because Of You – Philip Bailey
  8. Watching The World – Chaka Khan
  9. No One Is To Blame (Phil Collins version) – Howard Jones
  10. If Leaving Me Is Easy – The Isley Brothers
  11. Angry – Paul McCartney
  12. Loco In Acapulco – Four Tops
  13. Walking On Air – Stephen Bishop
  14. Hall Light – Stephen Bishop
  15. Woman In Chains – Tears For Fears
  16. Burn Down The Mission – Phil Collins

CD 3: 1991 – 2011

  1. No Son Of Mine – Genesis
  2. Could’ve Been Me – John Martyn
  3. Hero – David Crosby
  4. Ways To Cry – John Martyn
  5. I’ve Been Trying – Phil Collins
  6. Do Nothing ‘Till You Hear From Me – Quincy Jones
  7. Why Can’t It Wait Til Morning – Fourplay
  8. Suzanne – John Martyn
  9. Looking For An Angel – Laura Pausini
  10. Golden Slumbers/Carry That Weight/The End – George Martin
  11. In The Air Tonite – Lil’ Kim featuring Phil Collins
  12. Welcome – Phil Collins
  13. Can’t Turn Back The Years – John Martyn

CD 4: Live 1981 – 2002

  1. In The Air Tonight (Live At The Secret Policeman’s Other Ball) – Phil Collins
  2. While My Guitar Gently Weeps – George Harrison
  3. You Win Again – The Bee Gees
  4. There’ll Be Some Changes Made – Phil Collins and Tony Bennett
  5. Stormy Weather – Phil Collins and Quincy Jones
  6. Chips And Salsa – The Phil Collins Big Band
  7. Birdland – Phil Collins with The Buddy Rich Big Band
  8. Pick Up The Pieces (Live At The Montreux Jazz Festival 1998) – The Phil Collins Big Band
  9. Layla (Live At Party At The Palace, 3 June 2002) – Eric Clapton
  10. Why (Live at Party At The Palace, 3 June 2002) – Annie Lennox
  11. Everything I Do (I Do It For You) (Live at Party At The Palace, 3 June 2002) – Bryan Adams
  12. With A Little Help From My Friends (Live at Party At The Palace, 3 June 2002) – Joe Cocker

Author: Buddy Iahn

Buddy Iahn founded The Music Universe when he decided to juxtapose his love of web design and music. As a lifelong drummer, he decided to take a hiatus from playing music to report it. The website began as a fun project in 2013 to one of the top independent news sites.

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