By Murray Wardrop Of The Telegraph
Phil Collins has indicated that he intends to end his rock career after learning that health problems will prevent him playing the drums again.
The 60-year-old star says he feels it is "a good time to stop" making music, adding: "I don't think anyone's going to miss me."
He has hearing problems, a dislocated vertebra and nerve damage in his hands, all brought on by a lifetime spent hunched behind a drum kit.
The songwriter also claims that listeners have grown "sick" of him and that there is no longer a place for him in the current music scene.
"I look at the MTV Music Awards and I think: 'I can't be in the same business as this'," Collins says in an interview with FHM magazine.
"I don't really belong to that world and I don't think anyone's going to miss me. I'm much happier just to write myself out of the script entirely.
"I'll go on a mysterious biking holiday and never return. That would be a great way to end the story, wouldn't it?" Collins, who lives alone in Switzerland after divorcing his third wife in 2007, has enjoyed huge popularity over 40 years as both a drummer and singer with the rock band Genesis and then as one of the biggest-earning solo artists of all time.
He claims that it was this success and the overplaying of his music which made people "want to strangle" him. "It's hardly surprising that people grew to hate me. I'm sorry that it was all so successful. I honestly didn't mean it to happen like that," he says.
The star, who has sold more than 150 million records, says his main focus now is his two sons, Nicholas and Matthew, by his third wife Orianne Cevey. "I'm not worried about not being able to play the drums again, I'm more worried about being able to cut a loaf of bread safely or building things for my kids," he says.
"My doctors tell me it's a work in progress, that it will take about a year for me to recover."
He said he has been told his hands are not strong enough to play the drums. "I don't think I'll ever be able to do that again," he said.
Collins once disclosed that the only way he could play was by taping his drumsticks to his hands.
The star, who has two children by previous marriages, joined Genesis in 1970 as drummer and later replaced Peter Gabriel as lead singer. In the 1980s he had hits such as In The Air Tonight, Against All Odds and Two Hearts, while continuing with Genesis.
He won an Oscar for his song You'll Be in My Heart from the 1999 Disney animated film Tarzan, and seven Grammy Awards. His last album, Going Back, released last year, was a collection of Motown and soul classics and topped the British charts in September