Updated: Paul McCartney ‘Upset’ at Phil Collins for Sharing Autograph Snub Story
Like many music lovers of his generation, Phil Collins was a big Beatles fan — emphasis on the was.
During a recent interview with the Sunday Times (via Entertainment Tonight), Collins discussed a personal encounter with Paul McCartney that left him feeling so slighted he still hasn't quite let go of it more than a decade later. "I met him when I was working at the Buckingham Palace party back in 2002. McCartney came up with Heather Mills," he recalled. "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 f---, you f---.’ Never forgot it."
10/24 Update - Collins has revealed in a new interview with Billboard that McCartney reached out to him via e-mail after this story went public. The Genesis and solo star says the former Beatle was "upset" about him sharing his account of their encounter. "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?"
From Collins' point of view, that brief conversation summed up McCartney's rather condescending way of dealing with people — even those who, like Collins, have built a pretty impressive legacy of their own. "McCartney was one of my heroes. But he has this thing when he's talking to you," he continued. "He makes you feel [like], ‘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.’"
Collins will have an opportunity to sign some books of his own shortly — his memoir, Not Dead Yet, is due to arrive in stores later this month, accompanied by a brief round of tour dates.
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