British musician Robin Gibb dies at age 62

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Robin Gibb, 1949-2012.
Image: AVRO.

Robin Gibb, singer, songwriter and member of the musical group Bee Gees, died Sunday in London, England, of complications from colon and liver cancer. He was 62 years old.

Robin, and his twin brother Maurice Gibb, were born December 22, 1949, on the Isle of Man, raised in Manchester, and later lived in Redcliffe, Australia.

While the twins and their older brother Barry Gibb began performing at a young age in England, they later made appearances on television in Australia, but the brothers had already moved back to England by the time they scored their first international hit New York Mining Disaster 1941 in 1967. The three brothers are known for their blended vocal harmonies, but Robin's voice can best be heard on the song I Started A Joke.

After several hits with the Bee Gees, Robin became a solo artist and had one hit in England, called Saved by the Bell. After that, he rejoined his brothers and had more hits in the early 1970s. Throughout the Bee Gees career, Robin shared songwriting duties with his brothers Barry and Maurice.

The Bee Gees had a comeback in the mid-1970's with songs like Jive Talkin' and You Should Be Dancing before Robert Stigwood, who was their first manager, asked them to record songs for the film Saturday Night Fever, which became one of the best selling albums and produced major hits like Stayin' Alive, Night Fever and How Deep Is Your Love. It was during this period that the Bee Gees became known for their contributions to disco music.

Speaking to a reporter from Weekend Australian in 2009, Robin Gibb said, "Since 1967, there have only been three albums that have truly affected the culture, and that's the Beatles' Sgt. Pepper, Fever, and Michael Jackson's Thriller. There's not many people who know what that feels like. We're like the guys who have been to the moon."

For the 100th Anniversary of the sinking of the Titanic in April, Gibb and his son, Robin-John Gibb, wrote a score for The Titanic Requiem, recorded by Royal Philharmonic Orchestra. Gibb was too ill to attend the premiere and he fell into a coma later in April.

Preceding Gibb in death were his younger brother Andy Gibb, who was a successful solo recording artist, in 1988 and his twin Maurice in 2003. Gibb is survived his 65-year-old brother Barry, a sister, and mother. He is also survived by his second wife Dwina Murphy and four children.