Meaning of “If Leaving Me Is Easy” by Phil Collins

“If Leaving Me Is Easy” is a 1980s song performed by the iconic British singer and songwriter Phil Collins. The song’s lyrics were inspired by the marital problems Collins was having with Andrea Bertorelli, his first wife. Collins and Andrea were married in 1975. Their marriage ended in 1980 when Andrea cheated on him with a painter and interior decorator that had been hired to work on their family home. Andrea eventually abandoned Collins for the painter.

You can view the lyrics, alternate interprations and sheet music for Phil Collins's If Leaving Me Is Easy at

The anger Collins felt over what his wife had done to him was what manifested itself in the lyrics of the song. As a result of this, this song has the same  theme as Collins’ signature song “In the Air Tonight” (which is also inspired by his marital troubles with Andrea). According to Collins, the main line from the chorus of “If Leaving Me Is Easy” is purely a “real truism”.

Lyrics of If Leaving Me is Easy by Phil Collins

Facts about “If Leaving Me Is Easy”

  • The song was written by Phil Collins.
  • Collins produced this song with renowned English record producer Hugh Padgham. Padgham is noted for producing hits from artists and musical acts such as Collins, Genesis, The Police, David Bowie, and Peter Gabriel.
  • The song was released in May 1981 as the third single from Collins’ debut studio album Face Value.
  • The song features the legendary British guitarist and singer Eric Clapton on guitar, thereby making it the first Phil Collins song to feature Eric Clapton. Collins later worked with Clapton on another song titled “I Wish It Would Rain Down”.
  • Besides Clapton, other famous musicians that featured on the song include Collins’ longtime friend and collaborator Daryl Stuermer, the late saxophonist Don Myrick, and jazz bassist Alphonso Johnson of the Weather Report fame.
  • The song peaked at number 17 on the UK Singles Chart. However, it failed to chart on the Billboard Hot 100 since it wasn’t released as a single in America.
  • Collins once told The Mail on Sunday that “If Leaving Me Is Easy” is one of his favorite songs.
  • Collins stopped performing this song live at concerts because he hated it when members of the audience screamed and talked loudly while he performed it live.
  • No official music video was ever made for this song.

Which genre does “If Leaving Me Is Easy” fall under?

Despite being a rock song, it also has elements of R&B. It can therefore be also said to be an R&B song.

Has this song been covered by any other musical acts?

The song was covered by the American musical group The Isley Brothers. Their version appeared on their 23rd album titled Masterpiece.

2 Responses

  1. Ross says:

    I love this song. I always put it on on the occasion I’m sitting and jamming in the house on my own, smoking a large one and thinking and reminiscing about the good times I had with the love of my life before she randomly walked away. Deep Phil, well played bro!

    • Anonymous says:

      I hear you Ross. I also listen to it quite often, and do the same … my ex “died” for 4 years, until I discovered she’d cheated on me, fallen pregnant, married the creep and had a daughter. Still smarts huh?

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