Who wrote what

  • I didn't know that, I've always thought the lyrics were Mike's.

    I think it said that on Wikipedia but I’m not sure if there was a link backing it up, I’ll have to check. Phil was using the phrase “going down like a monkey” a lot, which is why the working title was Monkey/Zulu.

  • I think it said that on Wikipedia but I’m not sure if there was a link backing it up, I’ll have to check. Phil was using the phrase “going down like a monkey” a lot, which is why the working title was Monkey/Zulu.

    It might very well be Phil's, ''get me out of here'' is quite the recurring theme with him., plus he had this way of improvising on top of the base which I guess must have led to many of the lyrics of that period and it makes sense for the singer to be in charge of that department.

    Edited once, last by Fabrizio ().

  • We Can’t Dance:


    No Son Of Mine - lyrics: Phil

    Jesus He Knows Me - lyrics: Phil

    Driving The Last Spike - lyrics: Phil

    I Can’t Dance - lyrics: Phil

    Never A Time - lyrics: Mike

    Dreaming While You Sleep - lyrics: Mike

    Tell Me Why - lyrics: Phil

    Living Forever - lyrics: Banks

    Hold On My Heart - lyrics: Phil

    Way Of The World - lyrics: Mike

    Since I Lost You - lyrics: Phil

    Fading Lights - lyrics: Banks


    There are also disputes over musical credits for this song (such as Hold On My Heart, which was allegedly Phil’s lyrics set to Tony’s music, idk)

  • Well that discography also said that Mike or Steve wrote the lyrics to Inside & Out, and Steve has made it very clear that it was Phil.


    As for Behind The Lines, whoa! What on earth did Phil originally write for the song? That’s news to me. By nasty, and given the timing, it might’ve been lyrics relating to the divorce, or at least something along those lines.

    Behind The Lines was written after a negative review in Melody Maker of their Knebworth concert. Given that Phil re-recorded the song for Face Value, I would have assumed the lyrics to be his, but earilier in the thread it's claimed that Mike wrote them.

  • Behind The Lines was written after a negative review in Melody Maker of their Knebworth concert. Given that Phil re-recorded the song for Face Value, I would have assumed the lyrics to be his, but earilier in the thread it's claimed that Mike wrote them.

    Well on the solo album the lyrics are credited to Mike it would seem. So that is that I guess.

  • Getting back briefly to the original topic of the thread: I think we can all agree that it would be interesting to know what individual credits for Genesis songs from the Gabriel era would have been. Well, many years ago I read an interview where Tony said he was actually pushing for individual credits as far back as FOXTROT.


    ...Then, many years later, he turns around and claims (in the notes for GENESIS ARCHIVE 1967-75) that the group credit was used "because that's the way it was" -- an obvious lie, especially in regards to the shorter songs. Go figure.

    The Seat Bunny!

  • Getting back briefly to the original topic of the thread: I think we can all agree that it would be interesting to know what individual credits for Genesis songs from the Gabriel era would have been. Well, many years ago I read an interview where Tony said he was actually pushing for individual credits as far back as FOXTROT.


    ...Then, many years later, he turns around and claims (in the notes for GENESIS ARCHIVE 1967-75) that the group credit was used "because that's the way it was" -- an obvious lie, especially in regards to the shorter songs. Go figure.


    Well I mean I would understand why Tony would push for individual credits. He simply wanted people to know who wrote what correctly. And yet, because of that, we have this mess where we’re trying to figure out who actually wrote the songs in the Gabriel era. Who would’ve guessed that the lyrics in Firth Of Fifth were Banks’ & Rutherford’s on first listen?


    I’d say it was a smart move removing that starting with A Trick Of The Tail (but it slowly took over by Abacab so what was the point).


  • I’d say it was a smart move removing that starting with A Trick Of The Tail (but it slowly took over by Abacab so what was the point

    Just guessing but perhaps with age comes some degree of maturity and the realization that even if you are the main catalyst for the song, when you are in a band the others' contribution will always be substantial. Mike came up with the riff for TIOA but it was much slower, Phil told him to pick it up and it's no minor thing, in my view it pretty much makes the song. I'm sure that just as usual, Tony had a lot to say about the chords. It's mainly acknowledged as Mike's baby but it's very much a group effort. I'd assume things like that, happened all the time in Genesis and it's really hard to tell thigs apart from another.

  • Well I mean I would understand why Tony would push for individual credits. He simply wanted people to know who wrote what correctly. And yet, because of that, we have this mess where we’re trying to figure out who actually wrote the songs in the Gabriel era.

    Blimey, calm down mate! No-one's forcing us to figure it out. 😉

    Abandon all reason

  • Blimey, calm down mate! No-one's forcing us to figure it out. 😉

    Ah you’re right. I mean, we the people will walk in stride as we combine our knowledge and brain power to figure it out, like how More Fool Me was Collins / Rutherford & how Steve literally said himself that Mike wrote the second part of After The Ordeal in a YouTube video while he wrote the first.

  • Well on the solo album the lyrics are credited to Mike it would seem. So that is that I guess.

    Well more fool me to coin a phrase. I no longer have my Face Value LP, but my CD for whatever reason doesn't include the Behind The Lines lyrics - only the songwriting credit.

  • Well more fool me to coin a phrase. I no longer have my Face Value LP, but my CD for whatever reason doesn't include the Behind The Lines lyrics - only the songwriting credit.

    Really? Maybe it was just on the vinyl? Idk I don’t own either edition. Wikipedia says that it was Mike. Perhaps a little bit of bull has been going around. Was it really Mike? I think I need an interview snippet now because now I’m confused.

  • Well I mean I would understand why Tony would push for individual credits. He simply wanted people to know who wrote what correctly. And yet, because of that, we have this mess where we’re trying to figure out who actually wrote the songs in the Gabriel era. Who would’ve guessed that the lyrics in Firth Of Fifth were Banks’ & Rutherford’s on first listen?


    I’d say it was a smart move removing that starting with A Trick Of The Tail (but it slowly took over by Abacab so what was the point).

    My impression (perhaps incorrect?) is that the individual or duo credits instead of group credits reflected the fact that for the first few albums after Peter left individual or tandem members of the band were arriving at recording sessions with developed songs. I’ve heard Tony, Phil, and Mike all say that began to change with Abacab and really came to fruition with the self-titled album. Around that time the music was the product of group jams in the studio (“like in the old days”) and then they would assign the lyrics-writing duties to a single member. Perhaps the most accurate credits (and one that would avoid the guessing) would have been for example on Home by the Sea “Music by Banks, Collins, and Rutherford. Lyrics by Banks.”


  • There are also disputes over musical credits for this song (such as Hold On My Heart, which was allegedly Phil’s lyrics set to Tony’s music, idk)

    Definitely sounds like Tony’s music and Phil’s lyrics. I think the working title of the song (“Burt”) reflects Tony’s appreciation for the music of Burt Bacharach.