Phil Collins’ Perfect New Year’s Eve Countdown Anthem

'In The Air Tonight'

here’s a drum beat that, more than any other, has become ingrained in the public consciousness: it’s the descending fill from “In the Air Tonight” by Phil Collins. So, if you want to kick off the new year with the 10 most iconic drum notes in rock, play the track on December 31st at 11:56:40 PM (some say 11:56:20 PM), and THE quintessential fill will sound just as the clock strikes midnight.

Despite achieving legendary status, Collins doesn’t attach much significance to that passage. It seems he improvised it during a take of the power ballad, the first single from his debut solo album, “Face Value” in 1981. “They sound like seal noises,” he said in 2019 about the two seconds for which he’ll always be remembered. And they give a whole new meaning to New Year’s Eve countdown.

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