Category: bee gees

On this day in music history: July 14, 1967 – …

On this day in music history: July 14, 1967 – “Bee Gees 1st”, the US debut album by the Bee Gees is released. Produced by Robert Stigwood and Ossie Byrne, it is recorded at IBC Studios in London from March 7 – April 14, 1967. Following their breakthrough success with their twelfth single release “Spicks And Specks” (#3 AUS Pop) in Australia in late 1966, The brothers father Hugh sends demo tapes of their work to The Beatles manager Brian Epstein. Epstein passes the tapes on to Robert Stigwood (Cream), who invite the band to come to England in February of 1967 to audition for him. Impressed by what he hears, Stigwood becomes the bands manager, with the Bee Gees moving back to their native UK. He secures them recording contracts with Polydor Records in the UK and Atlantic Records subsidiary Atco in the US. The album is actually the third full length release by the band, but is their first to be released internationally. It spins off three singles including “New York Mining Disaster 1941” (#14 Pop), and “To Love Somebody” (#17 Pop) the latter of which is originally intended for Otis Redding. The albums’ cover is designed by artist and musician Klaus Voorman. The album is remastered and reissued in 2006 as a two CD set featuring the original mono and stereo mixes, along with unreleased tracks from the sessions and early takes. “Bee Gees 1st” peaks at number seven on the Billboard Top 200.

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On this day in music history: June 9, 1979 – &…

On this day in music history: June 9, 1979 – “Love You Inside Out” by the Bee Gees hits #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 for 1 week, peaking at #57 on the R&B singles chart on June 2, 1979, and #15 on the Adult Contemporary chart on June 16, 1979. Written by Barry, Robin and Maurice Gibb, it is the ninth and final chart topping single for the family group from The Isle Of Man, UK. Written during the sessions for the brothers fifteenth album “Spirits Having Flown”, the sensual, down tempo R&B flavored “Love You Inside Out” differs noticeably from the genre defining disco sound of their hits from the “Saturday Night Fever” soundtrack. Released as the third single from “Spirits” in April of 1979, it quickly becomes another smash. Entering the Hot 100 at #37 on April 21, 1979, it climbs to the top of the chart seven weeks later. “Love You” temporarily interrupts Donna Summer’s three week run at the top of the pop singles chart with “Hot Stuff”. The chart topping success of “Love You Inside Out” marks a major milestone in the Bee Gees career. It is their sixth consecutive number one single, tying them with The Beatles for having the most number ones in a row. Ironically, it is also their final single to reach the top of the US pop charts as artists. The band are caught up in the backlash against disco at the end of the 70’s which results in much of their music being blacklisted from radio airplay in the US. The brothers do not have another top ten record in the US under their own name until the release of “One” in July of 1989. “Love You” is sampled numerous times by Hip Hop and R&B artists including Jay-Z & R. Kelly, Snoop Dogg, Total Featuring 112, and The Game Featuring Floetry. “Love You Inside Out” is certified Gold in the US by the RIAA.

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On this day in music history: June 2, 1975 – &…

On this day in music history: June 2, 1975 – “Main Course”, the thirteenth album by the Bee Gees is released. Produced by Arif Mardin, it is recorded at Criteria Studios in Miami, FL and Atlantic Studios in New York City from January 6 – February 21, 1975. Having formed a creative alliance with Atlantic Records staff producer Arif Mardin (AWB, Bette Midler, Aretha Franklin) on their previous album “Mr. Natural”, the Bee Gees travel to Miami (at the suggestion of their manager and label boss Robert Stigwood and mutual friend and label mate Eric Clapton) to work on the follow up. The brothers rent and stay in the same house made famous on the cover of Clapton’s “461 Ocean Boulevard” in Miami. For the sessions, the Bee Gees add new musicians to their band including drummer Dennis Bryon, guitarist Alan Kendall (hold overs from the previous album) and keyboardist Blue Weaver. All three become permanent members of the brothers studio and touring band, and play an essential role in the evolution of their sound. Once in the studio with Mardin, he suggests to the brothers that they listen to more R&B music, and try writing more material in that vein. Lovers of American R&B, the Gibb brothers do just that, quickly writing all of the songs during the five weeks they spend recording the album. The end result is a brilliant amalgamation of pop and R&B that restores the Bee Gees to critical and commercial prominence, setting the stage for the phenomenal success that carry them throughout the rest of the 70’s. “Main Course” spins off three singles including “Jive Talkin” (#1 Pop), “Nights On Broadway” (#7 Pop), “Fanny (Be Tender With My Love)” (#12 Pop). The album is remastered and reissued in 2011, and reissued again 2015 as part of a five CD box set collecting the bands mid to late 70’s recordings. “Main Course” peaks at number fourteen on the Billboard Top 200, and is certified Gold in the US by the RIAA.

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On this day in music history: May 6, 1997 – “S…

On this day in music history: May 6, 1997 – “Still Waters”, the twenty-first studio album by the Bee Gees is released (UK release date is on March 10, 1997). Produced by Russ Titelman, David Foster, Hugh Padgham, Arif Mardin, Raphael Saadiq and the Bee Gees, it is recorded at Middle Ear Studios in Miami Beach, FL from October 1995 – August 1996. The band initially record an earlier version of the album that is rejected by Polydor Records, but regroup and rework the material with various producers. Among the producers working on the album include their old friend and mentor Arif Mardin, marking the first time they have worked with him since the “E.S.P” album in 1987. It is Mardin who had helped the band re-invent their sound in 70’s, guiding them into their second and most successful era of pop stardom. The result is their most successful album in twenty years, coinciding with the band being inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame and being honored by the BRIT Awards for their Outstanding Contribution To Music. It spins off three singles including “Alone” (#5 UK, #20 US Pop). “Still Waters” peaks at number two on the UK album chart, number eleven on the Billboard Top 200, and is certified Platinum in the US by the RIAA.

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On this day in music history: April 24, 2001 -…

On this day in music history: April 24, 2001 – “This Is Where I Came In”, the twenty second studio album by the Bee Gees is released. Produced by the Bee Gees and Peter-John Vettese, it is recorded at Middle Ear Studio in Miami Beach, FL and Area 21 in London circa 1999 – 2000. The groups first album since “Still Waters” four years before, it features lead vocals by all three brothers, and is the final Bee Gees album before Maurice Gibb’s death in 2003. A critical and commercial success in both the US and UK, it is further bolstered by a memorable live performance on the A&E concert series “Live By Request”. “This Is Where I Came In” peaks at number six on the UK album chart, number sixteen on the Billboard Top 200, and is certified Gold in the US by the RIAA.

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On this day in music history: March 24, 1979 -…

On this day in music history: March 24, 1979 – “Tragedy” by the Bee Gees hits #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 for 2 weeks. Written by Barry, Robin and Maurice Gibb it is the eighth US chart topper for the three brothers from the Isle Of Man, UK. Recorded at Criteria Studios in Miami, FL in the Spring of 1978, the song is written during a particularly prolific period for the brothers Gibb. “Tragedy” is written in mid 1977, while the Bee Gees are filming “Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band”. During this time, they also write “Too Much Heaven” and “Shadow Dancing”. The songs climactic explosion sound effects are created by the engineer, recording several overdubs of Barry Gibb cupping his hands over the microphone, while making the explosion sound with his mouth. That is combined with keyboardist Blue Weaver playing random notes on the bottom end of the piano, with the sounds being heavy processed in the mix. Issued as a single in late January of 1979, prior to the release of their first post “Saturday Night Fever” album “Spirits Having Flown”, it is another immediate hit. Entering the Hot 100 at #29 on February 10, 1979, it streaks to the top of the chart six weeks later. Like their previous single “Too Much Heaven” which interrupted Chic’s six week run at the top with “Le Freak”, “Tragedy” follows suit. The Bee Gees single temporarily bumps Gloria Gaynor’s “I Will Survive” from the number one spot for two weeks, before she replaces the group at the top for a third and final week. “Tragedy” also becomes the Bee Gees’ fifth consecutive number one single on the Hot 100, following the three from the “Saturday Night Fever” soundtrack, and the aforementioned “Too Much Heaven”. “Tragedy” is certified Platinum in the US by the RIAA.

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On this day in music history: March 18, 1978 -…

On this day in music history: March 18, 1978 – “Night Fever” by the Bee Gees hits #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 for 8 weeks, also peaking at #8 on the R&B singles chart on May 13, 1978. Written by Barry, Robin & Maurice Gibb, it is the sixth US chart topper for the British born family trio. Written for the film “Saturday Night Fever”, the brothers write and record the basic track at the Château d’Hérouville outside of Paris, France in the Spring of 1977. The vocals, strings and additional overdubs are recorded at Criteria Studios in Miami, FL. Released in late January of 1978, heavy airplay as an album cut forces RSO Records to rush release the song as a single while the soundtrack albums then current release “Stayin’ Alive” is still climbing the charts. Like its two predecessors, “Night Fever” is another immediate smash. Entering the Hot 100 at #76 on February 4, 1978 (on the same day that their previous single “Stayin’ Alive” hits number one), it rockets to the top of the chart six weeks later. The week it tops the pop singles chart, it makes further history as Barry Gibb is also the co-writer and producer of the songs in the #2, #3, and #5 spots on the chart. Those songs are the Bee Gees’ own “Stayin’ Alive”, Samantha Sang’s “Emotion” and Andy Gibb’s “(Love Is) Thicker Than Water”, the latter of which “Night Fever” unseats from the number one spot. One week later on March 25, 1978, Yvonne Elliman’s “If I Can’t Have You” also co-written by Barry Gibb, enters the top ten, increasing the number to five singles in the Billboard pop top ten at once. “Fever” is the Bee Gees third consecutive single to sell over two million copies in the US, with “How Deep Is Your Love” and “Stayin’ Alive” both topping that sales plateau during the first two months of 1978. At the time of its release, a promotional music video is shot for “Night Fever” at the time of its release, featuring a clean shaven Barry Gibb. The clip features the Gibb brothers singing the song in a studio with film footage of Motel Row in Sunny Isles Beach, FL chroma key projected over them. However, it is not shown at the time and is not released until 2004. “Night Fever” is certified Platinum in the US by the RIAA.

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On this day in music history: January 6, 1979 …

On this day in music history: January 6, 1979 – “Too Much Heaven” by the Bee Gees hits #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 for 2 weeks, also peaking at #10 on the R&B singles chart on February 17, 1979. Written by Barry, Maurice and Robin Gibb, it is the seventh chart topping single for the pop music family trio from the Isle Of Man, UK. Taking a conscious step away from their recent uptempo singles, the Bee Gees record the soulful, lush ballad mid way through the sessions for their next album at Criteria Studios in Miami, FL in June and July of 1978. The group also enlists the assistance of Chicago’s horn section including James Pankow, Walt Parazaider and Lee Loughnane to play on the track. The Bee Gees spend the better part of the two months it takes to complete the song working out and recording the vocal harmonies on the song, which features nine tracks of three part vocal harmony (the equivalent of twenty-seven voices). “Too Much Heaven” is issued as the first single from the Bee Gees forthcoming album “Spirits Having Flown” in early November of 1978, the official follow up to the phenomenally successful “Saturday Night Fever” soundtrack. Entering the Hot 100 at #35 on November 18, 1978, it races to the top of the chart seven weeks later. The group perform the song live on the television program “Music For UNICEF” on January 9, 1979, with the brothers donating all of their royalties from the publishing and sales of the single to UNICEF. The single generates over $7 million for the children’s charity. “Too Much Heaven” is certified Platinum in the US by the RIAA.

On this day in music history: December 24, 197…

On this day in music history: December 24, 1977 – “How Deep Is Your Love” by the Bee Gees hits #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 for 3 weeks, also topping the Adult Contemporary chart for 6 weeks on November 26, 1977. Written by Barry, Robin and Maurice Gibb, it is the fourth number one single for the trio of brothers from The Isle Of Man. While the Bee Gees are working on the follow up to their previous album “Children Of The World”, they receive a call from their manager Robert Stigwood, requesting songs for a film he’s producing. Having already written “How Deep Is Your Love”, the group originally intend to give the song to Yvonne Elliman to record, but Stigwood insists that they record it themselves upon hearing their demo recording. Instead, Elliman is given “If I Can’t Have You”, also written by the brothers which she records with producer Freddie Perren for the soundtrack. The Bee Gees own version of that song appears on the B-side of their next single “Stayin’ Alive”. Recorded at the Château d’Hérouville outside of Paris, France in February 1977, it is the first single released from the blockbuster film and soundtrack to “Saturday Night Fever” in early September of 1977. Entering the Hot 100 at #83 on September 24, 1977, it climbs to  the top of the chart thirteen weeks later. “How Deep Is Your Love” makes Billboard chart history when it spends an unprecedented seventeen consecutive weeks inside the top 10 on the Hot 100 (thirty three weeks total on the chart), at the time making it the longest run for any single since the chart was initiated in August of 1958. “How Deep Is Your Love” is certified Gold in the US by the RIAA.

Born on this day: December 22, 1949 – Twin bro…

Born on this day: December 22, 1949 – Twin brothers Robin and Maurice Gibb of the Bee Gees (born Robin Hugh Gibb and Maurice Ernest Gibb in Douglas, Isle Of Man). Happy Birthday to Robin and Maurice on what would have been their 69th Birthdays.