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Phil Collins does Motown


Opening Night in Philly, 20th June 2010

Collins said as he addressed the sold out Philadelphia crowd: You are going to the show expecting to be fully entertained, but not knowing most of the set list, you find you know them all. These songs are classics, every single one of them.

1The set started off with Signed Sealed Delivered, great anticipation as the band played the intro which was extended, and then the man himself entered stage right. The Philly crowd has always been loyal to the Genesis family and this reaction was no exception. After the first song they went right into (Your Love Is Like A) Heat Wave. A lot of the songs, because of their short lengths, were played right into another and it was a great decision.

The whole band was really into the performance, considering this was opening night. Brad Cole was the other band leader taking cues from Phil all night on when to end the songs. Regulars Chester Thompson, Amy Keys, and Daryl Stuermer were all on their game tonight. Phil sounded great, and no: He did not play drums at all!

2Dancing In The Street continued the opening medley; afterwards he first addressed the crowd about his love for these songs. Phil has never looked happier is years, "These are the songs I have always wanted to play". Classic after classic belted out from the band. The crowd went crazy when Papa Was A Rolling Stone started. I will admit that all of the songs, I knew, but not all did I know the title. His rendition of the beautiful Stevie Wonder song Never Dreamed You’d Leave In Summer was very moving. In between “sets” of songs he would introduce members of the band by section, the first being the brass section.

The show was on a roll with Going To A Go-Go and Jimmy Mack. The first of many highlights for me was his rendition of Ain’t That Peculiar (Gabriel covered this live in 77-78). Towards the end of the show he would have done the whole leave the stage go into the encore, but as he stated, “by the time we get back there, we will be back out here so let’s skip it and we are going to play some more songs!” This fired everyone right back up again, and to close the show they did My Girl, which he has played live previously (notation needed, released on Love Songs), and then did his also hit You Can’t Hurry Love which ended the show with an amazing crescendo.

3The Funk Brothers didn't sound a day older than on original recordings of most tracks. There are so many songs. Basically played all of the songs from Going Back, coming out in September. A great moment came after the show and after the band had left the stage when the whole Electric Factory chanted, for several minutes, “We Want Phil!”

Of course he had already left at that point, but it was a great time had by all. I am absolutely honored to have been to this show, which seems to be a rare one and to have been as close as I was as you can see by the pictures. If you are a fan of music, and of course Phil, and you have the means, GET TO THESE SHOWS.

Author: Daniel Lawrence Colacicco
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