Taken from The News-Herald (Nov 28, 2014)
Steve Hackett bringing the music of Genesis to Hard Rock Rocksino
by John Benson, Entertainment@News-Herald.com
Steve Hackett: Genesis Extended will bring a lot of early Genesis material to the Hard Rock Rocksino.
The whole is often greater than the sum of the parts; however, that’s not the case with ’70s prog rock band-turned-’80s hit makers Genesis, which has fans on both sides. There are those who collectively believe the early incarnation of the band is vastly superior to its shallow latter MTV existence, while others just love the radio hits.
Now, Genesis is receiving renewed attention due to documentary “Sum of the Parts,” which is airing on Showtime. Steve Hackett, who participated in the project, played guitar during the band’s seminal period of 1971 to 1977 along with Peter Gabriel, Phil Collins, Tony Banks and Mike Rutherford.
“(The intent with) the documentary was to reveal all, but (it) actually revealed things only in part,” said Hackett, calling from Boston. “There was so much on the cutting room floor, and there were things that were much more apropos that Pete said that really got the heart of why(he left). All of that has been whitewashed out.”
He added that the story being Gabriel leaving the then album-oriented band in 1975 stemmed from the singer getting more attention than the rest of the group. Looking back on it, it seems only natural the animated frontman dressing up as a flower on stage would garner more press.
“At that time, what they were talking about was no matter how hard Genesis tried, Gabriel’s contributions to a live show would be reviewed quite separately from the rest of the band,” Hackett said. “It was almost as if it were David Bowie and his backing band.
“So there was this paranoia within the ranks. The guys who started the band felt it had been hijacked. They yanked it back and kept me on a very short leash.”
Hackett’s short leash began with the success of his 1975 solo album “Voyage of the Acolyte.” He pointed out all of the band members were also active in other groups but it was his early success that threatened the rest.
“I think Tony and Mike were worried about creating another Pete,” Hackett said. “Pete left because he was not able to have a solo career while he was a member of the band. He wanted to do stuff on his own and remain part of the band.”
The irony or hypocrisy of this prevailing mindset among the remaining Genesis members against side projects was within a decade Collins’ multi-platinum solo career would overshadow the band.
Today, Hackett is sort of like the forgotten member of Genesis, which in 2010 was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Even though there was talk of the group’s mid-’70s lineup reuniting in 2006, the decision was made to tour the band’s more commercial lineup of Collins, Rutherford and Banks. The three have now said Genesis is retired.
Eventually Hackett returned to his Genesis Revisited project, which a decade earlier included an album of reworked classic material from the group. Then “Genesis Revisited II” was released in 2012, further exploring the band’s rich catalog.
Now Hackett is touring the material with his “Genesis Extended Tour,” which comes through Northeast Ohio with a Dec. 3 date at the Hard Rock Rocksino Northfield. The setlist includes rarities and fan favorites such as “Squonk,” “The Musical Box,” “Firth Of Fifth” and “Supper’s Ready.”
Finally, the elephant in the room is whether Genesis in any form will ever perform again. Hackett said, “They have my number, that’s all I can say.”
Who: Steve Hackett: Genesis Extended.
When: 7:30 p.m. Dec. 3.
Where: Hard Rock Rocksino, 10777 Northfield Road, Northfield.
Tickets: $37,50 to $75 at Ticketmaster outlets.