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Genesis - Abacab (1981)

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  • 80's Score 80's score: 1.48
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"Abacab" is a song by the British rock band Genesis, released on 14 August 1981. It was produced by Genesis and distributed ...

"Abacab" is a song by the British rock band Genesis, released on 14 August 1981. It was produced by Genesis and distributed in the United States by Atlantic Records and Warner Music Group. The song, written by Tony Banks, Phil Collins, and Mike Rutherford, was featured on Genesis' album of the same name and was a top 10 hit on the British pop chart, where it peaked at No. 9. The song was the second single from the album in the US, where it peaked at No. 26 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart in early 1982. It stayed in the Top 40 for six weeks.

The title is taken from the structure of an early version of the song. Guitarist Mike Rutherford explained in an interview in 2006:

[There are] three bits of music in "Abacab" and we refer to them as 'bit A', [correcting self] 'Section A', 'Section B', and 'Section C'. And at different times they were in a different order. We'd start with section A and then have section C and then have section [pauses] and at one point in time, it spelt "ABACAB". And you've got the final version where it's not that at all, it's like "ACACACUCUBUBUGA".

The track was regularly performed on the band's 1981 Abacab tour, the 1982 Three Sides Live Encore Tour, the 1983/84 Mama Tour and the 1986/87 Invisible Touch tours. On the first two tours, Phil Collins would sing the chorus in a high falsetto while Banks and Rutherford sang the lower harmonies. For the later tours, Collins would sing the chorus in a lower octave while Rutherford sang the higher falsetto harmonies. Genesis rehearsed the song for the 2007 reunion, but it was not included in the final setlist.

The song's LP version has an extensive instrumental arrangement as an outro, while the single version of the song eliminates an instrumental arrangement entirely and replaces it with a part of the opening arrangement as a quick outro.

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