Please check monthly archives for many other stories that have been posted about Barry. The month of September is devoted to Barry also in honor of his birthday and anniversary.
March 15, 2013
Are you ready? Here’s my story about the Bee Gees and my wonderful Barry Gibb. When I was about 6, I heard their music for the first time. Mom played it constantly. I decided I wanted Barry to come to our apartment so I could just climb on his lap and he could sing to me. I loved it when mom would play the love songs before I went to bed. I remember her singing “One Minute Woman” and “To Love Somebody”. Now fast forward ten years. I am, of course, a Bee Gees fanatic. Now I don’t want Barry to visit so I can climb on his lap. Now I want him to take me to the prom in his Night Fever shirt and white pants. So amazing! Sexy on those long, long legs. Keep going…..I am still singing Bee Gees in college. Now the Barry fantasy puts him in a different place in my mind. Funny, how when you grow up and see someone differently when you are looking for a partner in life. I wish he were mine because my heart tells me I need a man like this for the rest of my life. I know no one is perfect, but how bad can the bad be when the good parts of him are so divine? Next decade comes…I finally get married and my husband Jack is jealous of the Bee Gees. My best friends love to jerk his chain when they come to visit because Barry is the fantasy that keeps on giving for all of my girlfriends. He opens his mouth and his heart pours out and we keep melting like we were teens. Now I’m in my 50’s, Barry is over 60 and still sizzling hot. My favorite song is “WORDS”. When he sings” WORDS”, I dream of being stranded with him on a desert island. I am not embarrassed to admit it. I joke about this but what it’s really about is someone being so appealing because he is gorgeous, yes, but the music is gorgeous, too….and HE WROTE IT! Put those two things together and you have perfection. I wonder how many women have dreamed about him..it has to be millions. I love, love all three of them, but I feel that Barry has been with me through my most personal moments….in my head and in my heart. God gave him looks and talent…yippee for all of us fans who got to grow up with that voice in the perfect package.
I am a Bee Gees snob. No one can touch their sound, their harmony, their songs. Yes, I grew up in a Bee Gees house (live and breathe for Barry) and I was born in ’75. My story is the best because the Bee Gees brought my husband and me together. On Valentine’s weekend, I was out with two of my friends determined to have a great time without boyfriends. It was a time when none of us was attached. We were post-college and in the working world, dating but meeting one less than cool guy after the other (loser does not apply). I dated some nice guys but none who were setting off sparks. My friends and I decided to go to a karaoke place and sing, try to just not worry about the holiday. So much emphasis is always put on being a couple. I was OK being by myself, although sometimes it is a challenge. I was telling myself it was OK to just “be”. I wasn’t in the mood to deal with guys tonight and was a bit fed up with all the hearts and flowers crap. So we got to the bar and saw some people we knew and just started having fun. As a Bee Gees girl, I wanted to sing one of their songs. All night long we were hearing the songs from Grease, and the Bee Gees hadn’t been played yet. So, I got up to sing “How Deep Is Your Love”, my favorite song. I’d had a few drinks, but I wasn’t drunk. I’d been in musicals in high school and sang in the show choir and felt that I had a pretty good voice. Anyway, when I started to sing, the place sort of quieted down and people were staring at me. One guy off to my left started moving towards the stage, and I focused on him….he just looked interesting, kind of the way I’d picture Barry Gibb to be if I was ever in a room with him. He just got my attention. He was about 5’10” or 5’11” and he was an athlete, you could tell…very muscular, sandy hair, dark brown eyes and a great smile. He led the applause and let out some “whoops”….really embarrassed me, but he didn’t back down and reached out his hand to help me down from the stage. His name was Matt, and he was a teacher and a football coach. We had a mutual friend at the same high school. He bought me a drink, and we talked Bee Gees. He asked my why I chose that song, and I asked him in return if he’d ever heard anything more perfect. (I was a bit arrogant, I guess) We had a great conversation and compared notes about our favorite albums…turns out he knew the Bee Gees as well as I did. I left an hour later with my friends determined not to be a one-night fling or to be sucked into a hook-up because it was Valentine’s Day. He’d had a bad break-up and was in the same frame of mind. I have to admit that it killed me to leave him that night. He had my heart on a platter from the first moment we spoke to each other. It took him two weeks to call me, but he did call. He came to my apartment with the Saturday Night Fever album that belonged to his mom and was “on loan”. I think that was the nicest thing he could have done..such a sweet gesture. The music tied us together, and we were crazy in love almost instantly. He told me later that he didn’t call for 14 days (he counted) because he didn’t want to scare me away. He knew I was “the one”. The next year we eloped right before “This Is Where I Came In” was released because Matt got me the CD as a newlywed gift. In January of 2003 we cried together over Maurice…it was awful…and I was grateful that he understood my buckets of tears and my sleepless nights that followed. He was feeling as terrible as I was feeling. Thank God we have the music and memories we’ve made sharing this band. It’s not really something I can fully explain. We have a special connection as a couple that goes back to our first days with the music from Barry, Robin and Maurice. No one can take away any of that from us. We just have them in our lives and are grateful we found each other because we have such great taste in the most perfect music ever written, and we know we will pass on all the great songs to our own kids one day. This music will never die.
My Bee Gees memory is so clear it seems like yesterday. I was one of the lucky ones who got to experience the Live By Request concert in April, 2001. I had waited 20 years to see the Bee Gees, and I thought my heart would jump out of my chest. There were so many elements of this concert that stand out, but the one thing I can’t ever forget was the way Barry acted throughout the night. I was sitting in front of him, and I almost never took my eyes away from him. Yes, there were times I watched Maurice because he was so much fun and Robin can really be cool, but something about Barry just got right into my brain. He was genuinely nice, so warm, so appreciative of the fans and response from the crowd. He was watching his brothers as though he was looking out for them. He’d glance at Maurice, then at Robin, always seemed to be checking that everything was just going right. Maybe it was a music cue, maybe a glance, maybe a smile or a slight tilt or nod of his head. He was acting the big brother even at this stage of their lives. It was as if he just wanted them to do well and the whole concert to go right. I am sure they all felt that way, but Barry’s demeanor was different. There was an attitude of protection about him, as though it was his job to be sure they were OK. It made him all the more likable and appealing. His voice transports you no matter what he sings, but his body language and facial expressions tell the real story. He’d smile at people in the crowd he recognized as though he was surprised they would come to see him play. His modest expressions were such a pleasure to watch; and I don’t even know if he is aware of it, but he definitely was making sure his brothers got their due and they all were in sync. Yes, that’s part of the job of being on stage, but it was more than that. He looked so imposing, tall and slender all in black with that great mane of hair, but when he glanced at his brothers, he was just the kid singing from the back of a truck, leading them by example. That touched my heart more than anything else that night. Fabulous and so rare a moment in time to see him act that way. The best memory of my life.
This next story is an older but , oh, so happy one.
Growing up I was the theatrical, musical, dancing drama queen. I think my parents just threw up their hands in resignation when I decided to follow in their footsteps. Mom taught tap dancing and aerobics forever. Dad sang with a rock band, and my older sister is a musical theater stage manager. To say that we are an artistic family is definitely an understatement. I don’t remember living without the Bee Gees. My first memories of my life include them. Highlights of a normal kid’s life might be losing a first tooth, winning a big game, driving a car for the first time. My milestones always included the Bee Gees.
My parents grew up with Barry, Robin and Maurice, married young and started my sister and me out early on their music. My first dance recital was me as a ballerina dancing to “Too Much Heaven”. For my first communion party, I insisted on having Bee Gees music, complete with having all my cousins disco dance to “Night Fever”. I remember every single memory because I loved, loved, the music and being the center of attention around it somehow. For my first kiss, I badgered the boy down the street who chased me all through middle school like a little puppy. I would tease him and he would try to kiss me. This went on for months. He got to me when he bought me a birthday present that knocked me out, the Bee Gees album Spirits Having Flown. (He got more than one kiss for that). When I was in high school, I competed in acting competitions, and one year I wrote my own monologue about having to decide which Bee Gee I would win with my charms who would ultimately take me to my Senior Ball before graduation. Barry won this competition because he was simply too gorgeous to let go, although philosophically I debated about both Robin and Maurice being equally appealing for reasons other than the obvious one. God, how did Barry get to be so handsome? I majored in communications in college, and I took all three of the guys with me. They made me feel as though I wasn’t far from home when I played any and every song. I indoctrinated my roommates and suitemates to all the music, won them over with the obvious talent that was far beyond anyone else who was popular at the time. There was no compromise with me. I graduated from college, worked for a PR firm and continued my devotion to “my band”. My future husband was working for a company that my firm was representing, and we met at a Christmas event, a cocktail party to “schmooze”. Our first conversations turned into a debate about “falsetto or no falsetto”? and ballad vs. rock-out song. Hello? “Tragedy”, “Love you Inside and Out”? We agreed to disagree and fell in love. All these years later the third generation of Bee Gees fans include my two children and their numerous friends. This Is Where I Came In was just released, and I am in love with it. It is so easy to take for granted something you have always had in your life, the familiar, the comforting, the music that makes you happy. I do not, however, EVER take Barry, Robin and Maurice for granted. My parents knew what they were doing, and so do I. One day my grandchildren will hear all about my life with the boys, and they will love them, too.
Our family is known for its good taste.