And Finally Artist News Beef Of The Week

CMU Beef Of The Week #329: Phil Collins v Paul McCartney

By | Published on Friday 28 October 2016

Phil Collins

Hey, so Philip Collins is back and everyone is excited, even though I don’t think my generation ever got the memo about him being cool again. Despite having promised never ever ever to sing any of his songs ever, he’s planning to tour around and sing some of his songs in venues across Europe. Including in the UK, which is still, as it fucking should be, part of Europe.

Doing a few gigs isn’t enough these days though, so he’s also put all his records out in the futuristic format of The Kids – aka vinyl – and published an old fashioned book about his life too. It’s the last of these things that’s been causing problems. Because Paul McCartney don’t like it. And he’s a Beatle.

Speaking to The Sunday Times to promote the book, Collins recounted a story about meeting McCartney at Buckingham Palace that also features in his memoir. “I’ve got to preface this by saying McCartney was one of my heroes”, Collins began, reminding everyone that both of them have be touted as ‘the nicest man in pop’ at different (or may even the same) times. “But he has this thing when he’s talking to you, where he makes you feel… ‘I know this must be hard for you, because I’m a Beatle. I’m Paul McCartney and it must be very hard for you to actually be holding a conversation with me'”.

Oh, come on, Phil. If you’re going to start throwing around accusations about Paul McCartney – a man who in his day was almost as nice as Justin Bieber – you’re going to have to give some more specific examples.

With minor nudging, Collins continued: “I met him when I was working at the Buckingham Palace ‘Party At The Palace’ thing back in 2002. McCartney came up with Heather Mills and I had a first edition of ‘The Beatles’ by Hunter Davies and I said, ‘Hey Paul, do you mind signing this for me?’ And he said, ‘Oh Heather, our little Phil’s a bit of a Beatles fan’. And I thought, ‘You fuck, you fuck’. Never forgot it”.

That does make old McCartney sound like a bit of arse, doesn’t it? Especially as Phil Collins had clearly brought a special book with him for the purpose of having it signed, even though the cool thing to do back stage at the Queen’s house is clearly to march around with no books that are in need of signing.

“Oh Heather, our little Phil’s a bit of a Beatles fan”. There really is no situation where saying those words sound good. Not even if you weren’t Paul McCartney and Phil wasn’t Phil Collins and you weren’t backstage at Buckingham Palace. Try saying those words to the person next to you right now. They will almost certainly reply, “You fuck, you fuck”.

But, as we’ve learned recently, Paul McCartney is all hearing and all knowing, and Philip Collins’ words quickly got back to him and made him feel sad.

“He’s been in touch about it because he was upset”, Collins told Billboard days later. “I’m afraid it happened, you know, and I’m afraid it affected me the way it did and I’m afraid I wrote about it. I think maybe I should just brush it under the carpet and forget about it and move on, but it did happen”.

Discussing their recent exchange, Collins added: “I certainly didn’t get any flowers from him; I got more of a ‘let’s just get on with our lives’. And I’m sorry he’s upset that I kinda said something nasty about him – well, it wasn’t really nasty. If people don’t tell people that sometimes their attitude could be a bit better then you’re not gonna get any better, y’know?”

Yeah, I know. So let’s just hope all this has proven to be a valuable learning experience for Macca. Although it sounds like it wasn’t. Paul, if you’re reading, and I’m sure you are, you need to buck up your ideas, man. You’re not Ringo Starr, you can’t get away with strolling around the place being unpleasant to people.