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Phil Collins back to writing songs

  • British musician Phil Collins, smiles as he talks to a reporter, Wednesday, Dec. 4, 2013, in Miami Beach, Fla. Collins announced Wednesday in Miami Beach that his nonprofit will help South Florida children with artistic and athletic dreams to fulfill their potential. Collins created the organization in 2000. Children are selected based on talent, motivation and enthusiasm. Once accepted, they get to work with mentors, who have included Tina Turner, Natalie Cole and others. (AP Photo/Alan Diaz)

MIAMI BEACH, Fla. — Phil Collins, the former Genesis drummer whose earnest ballads made him a star in the 1980s, is penning songs again. Although he dreads the idea of extended touring because it would take him away from his five children, Collins says he has missed the creativity of music since he retired in 2010.

Collins spoke in Miami Beach on Wednesday. He was in town to promote the expansion of his nonprofit Little Dreams Foundation, which he co-founded with his now ex-wife Orianne Collins to help youth realize their artistic, musical and athletic dreams.

"I've decided I kind of missed that writing creative stuff, so I'm trying to get back into writing, and that's getting into a certain headspace and personal drive," he said.

There's no magic for getting into the groove, "just banging away at it," he said. Sometimes the lyrics come first, sometimes the music.

"I've got some lyrical ideas on paper that are good. I've started to thrash around at the piano. A lot of it is hit and miss," he said. "All you need is something to hang an idea on and you're off."


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