Oh boohoo, pg isn’t living up to your expectations. Pardon my own snobbiness, but big deal. The guy doesn’t live for anyone’s expectations but his own. He doesn’t do anything because he “has to,” he does whatever he feels like on his own terms, and I respect him for it.
I’ve been a pg fan since his days in Genesis and as soon as he left, I no longer appreciated Genesis, nor did I like the musical direction they went in. Just my taste. But there was bad blood there, and I don’t know if you recall the 80s or not (I have no idea how old you are) but shortly after pg put out So, Phil Collins ripped off some very unique, characteristic drum beat rhythms that were trademark pg, and they got into a bit of a distant row over it. One might wonder, how does one rip off a drumbeat, there’s no way to copyright something like that, and that’s true. That’s why pg couldn’t really do anything about it. But Phil Collins indeed did rip him off. I saw pg live in 1986 as well as Genesis that same year, and Phil Collins did a very cool and unique double-drumkit “duel” with the backing drummer who played so Collins could lead sing up front, and it was amazing. Unfortunately it was peppered with some very distinct, unique African-inspired drum beats that pg came up with first. pg had been working for several years on a special project on his own grounds and both of them came out almost simultaneously with the same idea, but samples of pg’s work had been leaking out for those years he was developing the special drum bits, and Collins just shamelessly used them, saying publicly, “you can’t copyright a drumbeat.” pg publicly protested and even had proof he came up with the the rhythms first but it was moot at that point, Collins had already incorporated the rhythms into some songs that were already on the charts and there was no “taking it back,” not that he would have.
And you expect these 2 to get amicably back together for a tour? That isn’t the only spat they’ve had, there’s been many others over the years and of course the whole reason pg left Genesis to begin with (which basically was HIM, until he left) was because they were giving him grief and telling him what to do, and he wanted to do his own thing. The whole surreal “art rock” era is so long over, I can’t even imagine in my mind now how they would possibly play that old stuff. They have all gone such separate ways for such a long time, can you even imagine pg getting up in front of Genesis and singing the 23-minute long Supper’s Ready, or how about Return of the Giant Hogweed with a big flower costume on now?! LOL that would be a sight. I mean I’d love to see it but I seriously doubt Phil Collins would fade back to the drumkit now and allow pg to do most of the singing. Besides, doesn’t Collins have a back problem or something now? I thought he quit drumming. I’d kill to see pg sing The Fountain of Salmacis or The Knife, today. But I just cannot see it happening. People always hold it against the one band member who says they will never get the band back together, and assume it’s snobbery, but who are YOU to say? You weren’t there. If you were in a band where you got treated like a piece of crap, and no one gave you credit when 90% of the work was stuff you wrote, how much would you feel like getting back together with them after not talking to them for the past 30-40 years?! pg’s not a young guy anymore. He’s amazingly in shape for the incredible physical stuff he performed on stage (how many people can ride a bike and sing at the same time? How about walk hanging upside down for the entire duration of the song while singing, or bouncing up and down and walking around and around while singing, while inside a giant inflated ball?!) but as I get older and achier myself, I can only imagine what the stress of having to perform would be like if I was 10 or 20 years older.
Give pg some credit. He almost ended up in a mental institution over leaving Genesis, I can’t say as I blame him for not wanting anything further to do with his former bandmates whatsoever. You say they “got him where he is today,” which is BS. Peter Gabriel is who got Peter Gabriel where he is today. Peter Gabriel was the vision of Genesis in the beginning. When he left they weakly attempted to continue on with the prog-rock surreal stuff and failed horribly at it, settling in to a common pop band. You could clearly see once the pg element was removed from the situation, the band became something else entirely. Genesis wasn’t “helping” pg so much as pg was what made Genesis what it was at the time. He doesn’t “owe them” crap. They were backing musicians for his own visions, barely nothing more.
pg has had his ups and downs throughout his entire career. He was never a hit-after-hit musician. Fans who stuck with him did so with a faith that despite the downs, there would be more ups to come. In a way, he’s very similar to Neil Young, not in music type but in that they are both visionaries who stick true to their own visions, and did what they wanted to, never what was expected of them. The same people who liked Neil Young’s acoustic country phase were not the same fans who dug his heavy reverb Crazy Horse phases. And who knows who was into Neil Young during his Shocking Pinks phase, his drug-addled “Reactor” phase, or his experimental electronic music for his son phase. Even during times when it seemed like they were lighting the fuse to a pile of explosives that were set under their own careers, they would just keep on keepin’ on. Neil Young could dig himself out of his own self-destruction and reinvent himself over and over and over, and so can Peter Gabriel. They are the phoenixes of rock. If you don’t respect that, then that’s your problem, but don’t lay the blame all on pg or call him a “snob” when you don’t know the man personally or have any insight whatsoever into his personal reasons for what he does. Were you there in the middle of Genesis when pg left? No? Then you have no basis for your fingerpointing. Oh boohoo, you’re a let-down fan. Something tells me that pg probably doesn’t give a s**t. If anyone’s a snob, it’s you.