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Phil Collins or Genesis: Which one sold more records

Phil Collins and Genesis
Photos from Phil Collins' and Genesis' Instagram


Phil Collins or Genesis: Which one sold more records

Genesis is one of those bands that had two really different eras that changed the course of their career completely. The first one with Peter Gabriel as the lead vocalist, focused on Progressive Rock and concept albums. The second one started when Gabriel quit in 1975 and Phil Collins, who was the band’s drummer since 1970, took his place.


After that, the group started to change their sound, making a more commercial kind of Prog Rock, with shorter and less complex songs, especially after the guitarist Steve Hackett left the group in 1977. With Collins, Mike Rutherford and Tony Banks, the band found a new sound and became one of the best-selling bands of all time.

After praised albums already done as Genesis‘ vocalist, Phil Collins decided to also start his solo career. With many solo hits, he became one of the biggest Pop stars in the world in the 80s. All that success made him enter the select group of the few artists who were able to sell more than 100 million records worldwide both as a member of a band and as a solo act. But who sold more records, Phil Collins or Genesis?

Phil Collins or Genesis: Which one sold more records

Although Collins released only 8 studio albums and Genesis released 15 records, it was the singer and drummer who sold more copies. According to Collins’ official website, he has sold as a solo artist an estimated amount of more than 150 million records worldwide, including compilations, live albums and singles.

As pointed out by the bio from Genesis’ official Youtube channel, the group has sold an estimated amount of more than 100 million records worldwide. So Collins sold around 50 million records more than Genesis according to those two official sources, which are the artists themselves.

Phil Collins’ studio albums sales

According to Best Selling Albums, Collins’ best-selling record was “No Jacket Required” released in 1985. That album has hits like “Sussudio”, “One More Night” and “Take Me Home”. The 1989 album “But Seriously”, which is the second best-selling one sold 12 million less copies.

His three final ones are the less best-selling albums . It’s not a coincidence, since the music business changed a lot after the mid-90s. Not only in terms of the music taste but also because of the internet and file sharing.

  1. No Jacket Required” (1985) – More than 25 million copies sold
  2. But Seriously” (1989) – More than 13 million copies sold
  3. Face Value” (1981) – More than 10 million copies sold
  4. Hello, I Must Be Going” (1982) – More than 5 million copies sold
  5. Both Sides” (1993) – More than 4 million copies sold
  6. Dance Into The Light” (1996) – More than 1.7 million copies sold
  7. Testify” (2002) – More than 1.4 million copies sold
  8.  “Going Back” (2010) – More than 500 thousand copies sold

Genesis’ studio albums sales

The Genesis studio albums with Phil Collins on vocals are obviously the ones which sold more copies. According to Best Selling Albums, “We Can’t Dance”, which was their final record with Collins, is the best-selling one. It sold an estimated amount of more than 15 million copies worldwide. It had hits like “No Son of Mine”, “Jesus He Knows Me”, “I Can’t Dance” and “Hold On My Heart”.

The Peter Gabriel era album which sold more copies is “Selling England by The Pound” released in 1973. Selling more than 800 thousand copies all over the world, that album had tracks like “I Know What I Like (In Your Wardrobe)”.

“Calling All Stations” sold more than a few albums with Peter Gabriel

A curious fact from Genesis’ albums sales is that their 1997 album “Calling All Stations” sold more copies than two albums from Gabriel’s era. It was the only album of the band with the vocalist Ray Wilson which also became the group’s final studio album. It sold an estimated amount of more than 525 thousand copies.

The first two albums “From Genesis to Revelation” (1969) and “Trespass” (1970) failed the list because they haven’t sold a big amount of copies. In fact, their debut album has reportedly sold less than 700 copies. Many record stores placed the album at the time in the religious section because of the name of the band and the album title.

  1. We Can’t Dance” (1991) – More than 15 million copies sold
  2. Invisible Touch” (1986) – More than 8 million copies sold
  3. Genesis” (1983) – More than 5 million copies sold
  4. Abacab” (1981) – More than 2 million copies sold
  5. And Then There Were Three” (1978) – More than 1.5 million copies sold
  6. Duke” (1980) – More than 1.4 million copies sold
  7. Selling England By The Pound” (1973) – More than 800 thousand copies sold
  8. A Trick of The Tail” (1976) – More than 800 thousand copies sold
  9. Wind & Wuthering” (1976) – More than 765 thousand copies sold
  10. The Lamb Lies Down On Broadway” (1974) – More than 750 thousand copies sold
  11. Calling All Stations” (1997) – More than 525 thousand copies sold
  12. Foxtrot” (1972) – More than 215 thousand copies sold
  13. Nursery Cryme” (1970) More than 160 thousand copies sold

I'm a Brazilian journalist who always loved Classic Rock and Heavy Metal music. That passion inspired me to create Rock and Roll Garage over 6 years ago. Music has always been a part of my life, helping me through tough times and being a support to celebrate the good ones. When I became a journalist, I knew I wanted to write about my passions. After graduating in journalism from the Pontifical Catholic University of Minas Gerais, I pursued a postgraduate degree in digital communication at the same institution. The studies and experience in the field helped me improve the website and always bring the best of classic rock to the world! MTB: 0021377/MG

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