Anthony Edwin "Ant" Phillips (b. 23 December 1951, Chiswick, west London) is an English multi instrumentalist, best known as a founding member of the band Genesis. He played guitar and sang backing vocals until leaving in 1970, following the recording of their second album, Trespass. He left due to suffering from stage fright, after being told by his doctor that the best thing would be to leave the band. He is known for his twelve string guitar work, and his influence can be heard throughout Genesis's early output.
Genesis's first album after Phillips's departure, Nursery Cryme, featured two songs which were holdovers from the days when Phillips was in the band: "The Musical Box" (originally called F#) and
"The Fountain Of Salmacis".
After leaving Genesis, Phillips studied classical music (especially classical guitar) and made recordings in collaboration with Harry Williamson, Mike Rutherford and Phil Collins, among others.He played the keyboards on the demos for Peter Gabriel in 1976. His first solo album, The Geese and the Ghost,
was issued in 1977.
Phillips released his second album, Wise After the Event, in 1978. This was followed the next year by Sides. Both of these albums were produced by Rupert Hine and were intended to reach a mainstream audience, though neither album was successful in that regard.
In its initial release in the UK, Sides was accompanied by a more experimental album entitled Private Parts and Pieces; in the U.S. and Canada the two albums were issued separately. Private Parts and Pieces II: Back to the Pavilion followed the next year, and several further sequels were issued in the 1980s and 1990s.
Phillips began writing material with Andrew Latimer of Camel in 1981, and was a featured performer on that band's album, The Single Factor
(released in 1982).
Phillips released a mainstream pop album entitled Invisible Men in 1983. He later claimed that this project went "horribly wrong" as a result of commercial pressures, and would subsequently eschew mainstream success in favour of more specialised material.
Phillips remains involved in a variety of musical projects, including extensive soundtrack work in England often for the label Atmosphere part the Universal Music Group. In the mid-1990s, he released an album entitled The Living Room Concert, which featured solo acoustic versions of his earlier material. He also provided archival material for the first Genesis box set, Genesis Archive 1967-75,
released in 1998.
Several of his albums feature artwork by Peter Cross.
After studying composition and piano at The Royal College of Music, Andrew worked as an arranger and orchestrator for acts including George Michael, Suede, Unkle, Sinead O'Connor & Hybrid as well as establishing his own orchestra. In 2004 Andrew also began working regularly with Neil Hannon of The Divine Comedy as musical director and arranger. In this capacity and playing piano Andrew has toured all over Europe and recorded 3 albums. More recently he has worked with Neil on a production of Swallows & Amazons and they are currently developing Sebastopol, an opera for
With former Howie B collaborator Luke Gordon, Skeet established the music production company Roxbury Music and their music has been used extensively on British television. Programmes which have featured music by Roxbury include The Apprentice, Dispatches, Banged Up Abroad, Britain's Lost World, Kali, a collaboration with Mike Figgis for the London Film Festival and
Locked Up Abroad.
Andrew has orchestrated and conducted scores for many TV & film productions including Desperate Romantics, Upstairs Downstairs and The Awakening. In 2011 he produced an album with the London Philharmonic Orchestra of video game music which has been among the most successful classical releases of recent years and wrote the score for How to Re-Establish a Vodka Empire which premiered in the London Film Festival. Andrew has also released library albums on Universal's Atmosphere and Chappell labels which have been used on television and
film all over the world.
Seventh Heaven- a brand new double album of orchestral and acoustic portraits from Anthony Phillips and Andrew Skeet came together as a 3 phase process encompassing 4 years. This 4 year/3phase process between Anthony Phillips and Andrew Skeet, reulted in a 70 piece orchestral treatment at Abbey Road studios. Seventh Heaven draws on material from all three phases of recording to create this outstanding album of music. Featured soloists include: singers Lucy Crowe and Belinda Sykes, guitarist John Parricelli, cellist Chris Worsey, percussionist Paul Clarvis and sax & woodwind virtuoso Martin Robertson.
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