For the other two albums the brothers shook off the old by relocating to Los Angeles to record in a studio they had never used with people they had never worked with.
The songs from these sessions are dominated by acoustic guitars and piano. The songs themselves are of mixed quality but the freshness of the sound and consistency of style hold the work together as a whole. At the end of both albums were ready for release to kick off the new RSO vanity label. This is a quintessential Bee Gees number, with three-part lead vocal, solo vocal spots for Barry and Robin, Maurice all over the place instrumentally, wonderfully strange lyrics, and even their backing vocals left in place where Bill Shepherd might have arranged more orchestral parts than he does.
This was the last Bee Gees session with Geoff Bridgeford. He left the group before their tour of East Asia, and was replaced on tour by Chris Karan. After touring the Bee Gees now worked quickly to complete another album. They started with a song by Robin his last solo composition until !
The last song is unknown. The drummer on the April sessions was a veteran session player, Clem Cattini, who has appeared on many top recordings going back to Current tour drummer Chris Karan did not make any recordings with the Bee Gees. Last was a short item with Barry and Robin weaving in and out of lead vocal over an instrumental backing largely by Maurice. The three were working tightly together again. Once again, the next week, three songs started and all three used. It almost had to be a B side as usual, but it also made it onto the album.
The other song is unknown. Bill Shepherd did not work with the Bee Gees after For the next few years he continued to work as an arranger and producer in London, often at IBC, with Mike Claydon as engineer. Among the clients were well-established French singers recording in England.
Bill was known especially for fine string arrangements, and other French singers came to record with him, such as Julien Clerc in He arranged the music for the French animated film Les Trois Mousquetaires and the accompanying soundtrack album by Michel Polnareff in In the late s Bill spent a few years working in Germany, and then moved to southern California by about Nat Kipner, also relocated Album) the area, saw him sometimes and recalls his love of cigars and liquor.
In L A Bill did arrangements for film and television productions. He died in The Bee Gees owed him a lot. Jimmy Stevens recalls that his entire album was done in two sessions. Bonham was busy elsewhere at the start of the session and a drummer called Heydon Jones was hired quickly to fill in.
The songs were recorded with Jimmy singing and playing piano at the same time, Alan playing acoustic guitar, and Heydon or John on drums. Jimmy and the engineer were very happy with the results. Jimmy and the engineer were very happy with the sound of these tracks.
Maurice was there supervising the session, but he did not play together with them. All this tinkering changed the raw feel of the basic tracks. The second session for Jimmy Stevens was conducted the same way as the first but with different musicians. Jimmy sang and played accompanied now by Peter Frampton on acoustic guitar and Mike Kellie on drums. Maurice again added bass afterwards. Orchestration was this time by Gerry Shury, his last documented work with Maurice, with credited sax and violin for two songs.
The independent label York Records released three albums that may have Maurice Gibb involvement. The latter two list Maurice Gibb and Mike Thorn for bass although John Fiddy, not listed, was the bass player and arranger on all three albums.
The credits shown here are closer to accurate but not complete. Mike started his recording career in with producer Joe Meek, doing rock and roll songs.
In the s he began working as an actor in addition to intermittent work recording and performing music. Drift Away was his first album, after eighteen singles. He sings in a strong baritone, Sinking Ships - The Robert Stigwood Orchestra - Plays Bee Gees Hits (Vinyl, country with a rock and roll edge to it.
The To Whom It May Concern album was compiled into final form just days earlier than this on July 7, so the Bee Gees must have intended this unknown song for some other purpose. A note in a fan magazine suggests it was for a proposed film that the Gibb brothers would appear in. No recording dates are available for these sessions, so the songs are listed above in the order they appeared on the album. The best clue to the approximate date is that Robin had to leave the sessions suddenly when his son was born a month early.
That date was September Robin returned to Los Angeles a week or so later to continue on into the next album, so they may have added more to this one. The stereo master of the album Sinking Ships - The Robert Stigwood Orchestra - Plays Bee Gees Hits (Vinyl dated November 22, and tape reels with the track masters of each side are, strangely, dated November Arranger Johnny Pate is a well-respected jazz musician and arranger whose professional career dates to He was originally a bass player, and worked for Duke Ellington for a time, but by the late s he was in more demand as an arranger and producer.
During the s he worked on rhythm and blues records, producing a few albums for B B King. In he had recently relocated to Los Angeles to break into film music. The Bee Gees session may have been a routine assignment, or perhaps not, since there are signs of him giving more to it than that. A backlash was inevitable. Steve Dahl, a Chicago radio shock jock who hated disco, kicked it off with a demolition on July 12,at Comiskey Park: About 10, people showed up at LP ballpark, Sinking Ships - The Robert Stigwood Orchestra - Plays Bee Gees Hits (Vinyl clutching Bee Gees records — which were tossed into a bonfire.
Homophobia fueled LP of the hatred. Shortly after the tour ended, he checked into a private London clinic for alcohol abuse. In he was thrown off the Concorde for drunk and disorderly behavior. Barry even lowered his falsetto. Convinced she was having an affair with her divorce lawyer, Robin broke into his own home to collect evidence. He was arrested. Still, Maurice and Robin wanted to keep the Bee Gees going. Only Barry understood their era was over. He persuaded his brothers that they should write songs and produce albums — for other artists.
They came up with hits for Barbra Streisand, Dolly Parton and others. Maurice never kicked his addictions. He died in from ailments brought on by alcoholism. Robin died in of colon and liver cancer. Barry, now 71, is the only Bee Gee left. Two months ago he performed at the Glastonbury Festival in England.
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