Rhythm and Blues

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United Kingdom

Years: 1967 - 1998; 2006 - present
Styles: Art Rock, Classic Rock, Pop Rock, Progressive Rock, Psychedelic Rock, Rhythm and Blues, Symphonic Rock


Chris Stewart - Drums, Percussion (in band: 1967 - 1968)
Anthony Phillips - 12 string acoustic guitar, 12 string guitar, Acoustic guitar , Backing vocals, Classical guitar or Spanish guitar, Dulcimer, Lead guitar (in band: 1967 - 1970)
Peter Gabriel - Accordion, Bass Drum, Flute, Lead vocals, Oboe, Percussion, Tambourine (in band: 1967 – 1975; 1978; 1982; 1999)
Mike Rutherford - 12 string acoustic guitar, 12 string guitar, Acoustic guitar , Backing vocals, Bass Guitar, Cello, Guitar, Sitar (in band: 1967 – 1998; 1999 , 2000; 2006 – present)
Tony Banks - 12 string guitar, Acoustic guitar , Backing vocals, Electric piano, Farfisa organ, Fender Rhodes , Grand piano, Guitar, Hammond organ, Keyboards, Mellotron, Organ, Piano, Synthesizer, Whistle (in band: 1967 – 1998; 1999; 2000; 2006 – present)


John Silver - Backing vocals, Drums, Percussion (in band: 1968 – 1969)
John Mayhew - Backing vocals, Drums, Percussion (in band: 1969–1970)
Mick Barnard - Guitar (in band: 1970 - 1971)
Phil Collins - Backing vocals, Drum Machine, Drums, Lead vocals, Percussion, Vibraphone , Whistle (in band: 1970 – 1996; 1999; 2000; 2006 – present)
Steve Hackett - 12 string guitar, Autoharp , Classical guitar or Spanish guitar, Lead guitar, Zither (in band: 1971 – 1977; 1982; 1999)
Chester Thompson - Drums, Percussion (in band: 1977 – 1996; 2006 – present)
Daryl Stuermer - Backing vocals, Guitar (in band: 1978 – 1996; 2000; 2006 – present)
Ray Wilson - Lead vocals (in band: 1996 - 1998)

Biography Picture     One of most successful rock of the 1970s, 1980s, and 1990s, Genesis enjoyed a longevity exceeded only by the likes of the Rolling Stones and the Kinks, in the process providing a launching pad for the superstardom of members Peter Gabriel and Phil Collins.[1]

     Genesis are an English rock band formed in Godalming, Surrey in 1967, with Peter Gabriel, Tony Banks, Mike Rutherford, Anthony Phillips and Chris Stewart as founding members. Its most recent formation comprised two founding members — keyboardist Tony Banks and bassist/guitarist Mike Rutherford — and drummer/singer Phil Collins, who joined in 1970. Genesis are one of the best selling music artists of all time with 21.5 million certified units sold in the US  and approximately 130 million albums worldwide.  They were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2010.[2]

    The founding members of Genesis, Peter Gabriel, Tony Banks, Mike Rutherford and Anthony Phillips all met at Charterhouse School in Godalming, Surrey.  Gabriel and Banks had arrived at the school in September 1963, Rutherford in September 1964 and Phillips in April 1965. All four found the environment of Charterhouse restrictive, as it favoured activities such as team sports, which they disliked. The first line-up consisted of Gabriel on vocals, Phillips on guitar, Banks on keyboards, Rutherford on bass and rhythm guitar and Chris Stewart (drums).[2]

     Still at school, Genesis signed Decca, having sent demos to solo art and producer Jonathan King. Their first 2 singles flopped, as did their 1969 Moody Blues-styled album, “From Genesis to Revolution”, which only sold around 500 copies. Early in 1970, they were seen live by Tony Stratton-Smith, who became their manager after signing them to his Charisma label.[3]

    Recording for the band's second album, "Trespass", began in June 1970 at Trident Studios with Anthony producing. The album was produced from many of the songs the band had written in Dorking, and included folk influences and progressive rock elements, such as complex arrangements and time signature changes used in the closing song "The Knife". The album's cover was designed by Paul Whitehead, who would illustrate the covers for the band's next two albums.[2]

     Shortly after recording "Trespass", Phillips decided to leave the group. He had felt that the increased workload of gigs had stopped the band from being creative as it had been previously, and that a number of acoustic pieces he wrote were dropped from the live set and not considered for recording.[2]

     In August 1970, Stratton-Smith advertised in Melody Maker for a replacement guitarist and drummer. Gabriel, Banks and Rutherford auditioned 15 drummers, but were particularly keen on London-born drummer Phil Collins, partly due to his playing skill, but also because of his sense of humour. Collins had stage school experience, and had played drums in a number of bands, including Flaming Youth.[2]

    The group did not find a suitable replacement for Phillips yet, so Banks learned how to play two keyboard parts simultaneously to cover for the lack of lead guitar and they resumed gigging as a four-piece. Mick Barnard briefly joined the band in November 1970 as the new guitarist, but they quickly discovered his playing expertise and experience was not up to the same standard as the rest of the group. In December, Gabriel spotted an advert in Melody Maker from Steve Hackett, who was looking for a band of "receptive musicians, determined to drive beyond existing stagnant music forms". Gabriel phoned former Quiet World guitarist Steve Hackett, asking him to listen to "Trespass" and attend a gig at the Lyceum. Hackett realized his guitar playing style would improve the Pictureand's sound and formed an immediate rapport with them, joining the band in January 1971.[2]

     In late ’71, Genesis issued their set, “Nursery Ctyme”, which featured another two gems, “The Musical Box” and “The Return of the Giant Hogweed”. By this point, the band transformed into one of leading purveyors of progressive rock, bizarre extrovert Gabriel proving a compelling, theatrical focus for the critically-lauded group. It was also a brief debut on lead vox for Collins, who sang on the track, “For Absent Friends [3]

    The group’s first fully realized, mature album is still somewhat uneven, but the stuff that does work well works so well that it carries the record. This includes “Musical Box”, which became a highlight of the group’s live shows, presenting Gabriel’s extraordinary abilities as a singer/actor as well as hinting at a level lyrical sophistication that dazzled many fans and onlookers.[1]

     “Returned of the Giant Hogweed” was an even better showcase for the group’s playing. The Definitive Edition Remaster version runs circles around the sound on all previous versions, although a certain weakness in the engineering (obviously in the original recording, and beyond repair) remains, especially when the presence of Collins drums in relation to the rest of the band (particularly on the acoustic passages) is concerned.[1]

    In August 1972, the band recorded "Foxtrot" at Island Studios. "Supper's Ready" remains the band's longest track recorded.  Gabriel's flamboyant and theatrical stage presence, which involved numerous and elaborate costumes and surreal spoken song introductions, made the band a popular live act. The "Foxtrot" tour began in September 1972 and lasted for one year, which included the band's first North American dates. The tour spawned the band's first live album, "Genesis Live",[2]

    In August 1973, Genesis returned to the studio to record "Selling England by the Pound". The album's title refers to a UK Labour Party slogan in an effort to counter the impression that Genesis were becoming too U.S.-oriented. On the opening track, "Dancing with the Moonlit Knight", Hackett became an early user of tapping and sweep-picking, two guitar techniques later popularised by Eddie Van Halen and Yngwie Malmsteen, respectively.[2]

    In 1974, Genesis retreated to Headley Grange in Headley, East Hampshire to write and rehearse material for their double concept album, "The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway". In contrast to the longer tracks featured on earlier albums, the album is a collection of shorter tracks connected by a number of segues. Gabriel was absent for a considerable amount of sessions due to his wife's problems with her first pregnancy. He proceeded to write the album's story and lyrics himself, which caused some friction with the rest of the group.[2]

    During "The Lamb" tour, Gabriel announced his intention to leave Genesis at its conclusion to the group. The group auditioned lead singers to find a replacement for Gabriel. Phil Collins, who had provided backing vocals, coached prospective replacements. When the band was about to record the vocals for the album, the members came to the realisation that Gabriel's possible replacement just was not the voice they needed. Collins asked the other members if he could give it a try. As his voice fit the already-completed music, Collins quickly completed the vocals and the band was left with the decision about what to do for live shows.[2]

     The quality of group’s first post-Peter Gabriel album “Trick of the Tail astonished everyone, especially coming out after an 18-month gap following “The Lambs Lies Down on Broadway” The opening number “Dance on a Volcano” almost deliberately recalls from “Selling England by the Pound” in melody and structure, and Phil Collins sounds more like Peter Gabriel than Gabriel himself did. Tony Banks and Steve Hackett’sEntangled” was the prettiest song the grout had recorded up to that time, a gossamer-textured piece about sleep and dreaming in which a strummed acoustic guitar makes its  most prominent appearance on a Genesis song, supported by the sweetest singing of Collins career.[1]

    Later that year, Genesis recorded "Wind & Wuthering", the first of two albums recorded at the Relight Studios in Hilvarenbeek in the Netherlands. Released in 1976, the album took its title from Emily Brontë's novel " Picturering Heights". Hackett had become increasingly disenchanted with the band by the time of "Wind & Wuthering's" release, and he felt confined.[2]

    Following the departure of Hackett, Rutherford assumed all guitar duties in the studio and the band were getting closer to a balance of what each member provided from a creative standpoint. The group decided to continue as a trio, a fact they acknowledged in the title of the 1978 album "...And Then There Were Three...". The album was a further move away from lengthy progressive epics (as explained in the lyrics on the song "Down and Out"), and yielded their first hit, "Follow You Follow Me", whose popularity led to "And Then There Were Three" being the band's first U.S. Platinum-certified album.[2]

     Released in 1980 “Duke” found Genesis completely geared up as a maker of concise, appealing pop singles, and if was immediate, across-the board hit, topping in U.K. chart and almost making the U.S. Top 10, while singles “Misunderstanding” and “Turn It On Again” become radio favorites on both sides of the Atlantic.[4]

     After gaining some limited commercial success with “Duke”, Genesis went for the jugular of American radio with the well-crafted pop of “Abacab”. While there are still some traces of their art rock past, the album is primarily filled with a new wave sound and concise songs. Phil Collins, who replaced Peter Gabriel years earlier as the lead vocalist, was finally comfortable with role as the leader of the band, and his influence is more prominent. Although he’s not a strong vocalist, Collins more than makes up for it with passionate performances.[5] 

     Recording for the band's next album, "Genesis", began in May 1983. The band decided on its eponymous title as each track was written as a group rather than individually. "Genesis" was released in October 1983 and continued the band's growing commercial success. The album topped the UK charts for one week and peaked at No. 9 in the U.S., selling over four million copies. Five tracks were released as singles; "Mama" reached No. 4 in the UK, their highest charting UK single to date, and "That's All" reached No. 6 in the U.S.[2]

    Genesis reconvened at The Farm to write and record "Invisible Touch"; released in June 1986, it became the band's most commercially successful album. It reached No. 1 in the UK for two weeks and peaked at No. 3 in the U.S., where it sold over six million copies. The album's five singles reached the top five in the U.S. chart: "Throwing It All Away", "In Too Deep", "Tonight, Tonight, Tonight", "Land of Confusion" and "Invisible Touch". The title track reached No. 1 in the U.S. for three weeks, the only song in the band's history to do so.[2]

     After Banks released "Bankstatement", Collins released ..."But Seriously", and Rutherford released "The Living Years", the trio reconvened for the 1991 album release "We Can't Dance", Collins' last studio album with the group. The album featured the hit singles "Jesus He Knows Me", "I Can't Dance", "No Son of Mine", "Hold on My Heart", "Tell Me Why" and "Never a Time" (a U.S. release only).[2]

     Phil Collins left Genesis following the “We Can’t Dance” tour and Picturey observers expected Tony Banks and Michael Rutherford to finally call it a day. They decided to persevere instead, hiring former Stiltskin vocalist Ray Wilson to replace Collins. Given that Stiltskin was a European neo-prog band, it isn’t total surprise that Genesis returned to their art rock roots on “Calling All Stations”, their first album with Wilson. The music on “Calling All Stations” is long, dense, and lugubrious, but it’s given the same immaculate, pristine production that was the hallmark of their adult contemporary work with Collins. It wants to be art-rock album, but not at the expense of losing the pop audience-which makes it all the stranger that the group doesn’t really write pop songs on “Calling All Stations”. That may be because Wilson’s voice isn’t suited for pop, but works well with languid, synthesized prog settings.[6]

    In 1998, Banks, Collins, Gabriel, Hackett, Phillips, Rutherford, and Silver gathered for a photo session and dinner to celebrate the release of a new box set, "Genesis Archive 1967–75". In 1999, Genesis with Hackett and Gabriel released a new version of "The Carpet Crawlers" for the "Turn It On Again: The Hits" compilation. On 21 September 2000, Collins, Banks, and Rutherford along with Daryl Stuermer performed acoustic renditions of "I Can't Dance", "Invisible Touch", "Follow You, Follow Me", and "Turn It On Again" at the Music Managers Forum, in honour of their manager Tony Smith.[2]

     In November 2006, Banks, Rutherford, and Collins announced their reunion for their 2007 "Turn It On Again" tour. An early idea for the project was to have Gabriel and Hackett join for live performances of "The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway", but Gabriel was unable to commit. Hackett decided not to participate without Gabriel. The "Turn It On Again" Tour included 48 shows covering Europe and North America from June to October 2007. Thompson and Stuermer reprised their roles on drums and guitars, respectively. During the UK leg, Banks, Collins and Rutherford opened the London concert of Live Earth at Wembley Stadium on 7 July. The European leg ended with a free concert at Circus Maximus in Rome that was attended by approximately 500,000 people. The show was filmed for DVD titled "When in Rome 2007".[2]

1. All Music Guide to Rock. The Definitive Guide to Rock, Pop and Soul. 3rd Edition 2002. Edited by Vladimir Bogdanov, Chris Woodstra, Stephen Thomas Erlewine, Published by Backbeat Books, page 456 - Bruce Eder
2. Source:
3. The Great Rock Discography - Martin C.Strong, Four Edition, by Canongate Publishing, Ltd. Edinburgh,  p. 295-296
4. All Music Guide to Rock. The Definitive Guide to Rock, Pop and Soul. 3rd Edition 2002. Edited by Vladimir Bogdanov, Chris Woodstra, Stephen Thomas Erlewine, Published by Backbeat Books, page 457 - William Ruhlmann
5. All Music Guide to Rock. The Definitive Guide to Rock, Pop and Soul. 3rd Edition 2002. Edited by Vladimir Bogdanov, Chris Woodstra, Stephen Thomas Erlewine, Published by Backbeat Books, page 457 - Vik Iyengar
6. All Music Guide to Rock. The Definitive Guide to Rock, Pop and Soul. 3rd Edition 2002. Edited by Vladimir Bogdanov, Chris Woodstra, Stephen Thomas Erlewine, Published by Backbeat Books, page 457 - Stephen Thomas Erlewine


From Genesis to Revelation (Mar 7, 1969)
Trespass (Oct 23, 1970)
Nursery Cryme (Nov 12, 1971)
Foxtrot (Oct 8, 1972)
Selling England by the Pound (Oct 12, 1973)
The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway (Nov 18, 1974)
A Trick of the Tail (Feb, 1976)
Wind & Wuthering (Dec 27, 1976)
...And Then There Were Three... (Apr 7, 1978)
Duke (Mar 28, 1980)
Abacab (Sep 18, 1981)
Genesis (Oct 3, 1983)
Invisible Touch (Jun 9, 1986)
We Can't Dance (Nov 11, 1991)
Calling All Stations (Sep 1, 1997)

Singles & EPs

The Silent Sun (Feb 2, 1968)
A Winter's Tale (May 24, 1968)
Where The Sour Turns To Sweet (Jun 27, 1969)
The Knife (May, 1971)
Happy The Man (May 12, 1972)
Twilight Alehouse (Oct, 1973)
I Know What I Like (Jan 25, 1974)
Counting Out Time (Nov 8, 1974)
The Carpet Crawlers (Apr 18, 1975)
A Trick Of The Tail (Mar, 1976)
Entangled (May, 1976)
Your Own Special Way (Feb 18, 1977)
Spot The Pigeon (May 20, 1977)
Follow You Follow Me (Feb 24, 1978)
Many Too Many (Jun 23, 1978)
Go West Young Man (Sep, 1978)
Turn It On Again (Mar 14, 1980)
Duchess (May 9, 1980)
Misunderstanding (Aug 22, 1980)
Abacab (Aug 21, 1981)
No Reply At All (Sep, 1981)
Keep It Dark (Oct 23, 1981)
I Know What I Like (Jan, 1982)
Man On The Corner (Mar, 1982)
3 x 3 (May, 1982)
The Lady Lies (Jul, 1982)
Follow You, Follow Me (Jul, 1982)
Firth Of Fifth (May, 1983)
Mama (Aug, 1983)
That's All (Oct, 1983)
Illegal Alien (Jan, 1984)
Taking It All Too Hard (Jun, 1984)
Invisible Touch (May, 1986)
In Too Deep (Aug, 1986)
Land Of Confusion (Oct, 1986)
Tonight, Tonight, Tonight (Mar, 1987)
Throwing It All Away (Jun, 1987)
No Son Of Mine (Oct, 1991)
I Can't Dance (Dec, 1991)
Hold On My Heart (Apr, 1992)
Jesus He Knows Me (Jul, 1992)
Invisible Touch (Live) (Nov, 1992)
Tell Me Why (Feb, 1993)
Never A Time (1993)
Congo (1997)
Shipwrecked (1997)
Not About Us (1997)
The Carpet Crawlers 1999 (1999)

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