2008


Robin wrote and recorded a new album this year, but released only three songs: ‘Alan Freeman Days’ (recorded in 2007), ‘Wing and a Prayer’ (later retitled ‘Wherever You Go’), and a new mix of ‘Ellan Vannin’. He also recorded backup vocals for Russian pop star Valeriya’s cover of ‘Stayin’ Alive’.

Barry scored the first release of a new Gibb song in 2008 with ‘The Heart Knows’ (written in 2007), a duet with with Olivia Newton-John recorded for a charity disk in Australia. He said in an online chat in April that he won’t do an all-country album after all.

Another year passed without a followup to the 2006 reissue box. In January 2008 all of the Bee Gees album cuts were made available as digital downloads. Odessa was finally released in January 2009.

January marked the fifth anniversary of Maurice’s passing, with still no collection of his work made available.


songs


REUNION
Barry Gibb, Ashley Gibb, Stephen Gibb, Douglas Emery
no record. US copyright August 2008

LIGHT
Barry Gibb, Ashley Gibb, Stephen Gibb, Douglas Emery
no record. US copyright September 2008

SHADOWS
Barry Gibb, Ashley Gibb, Stephen Gibb, Douglas Emery
no record. US copyright September 2008

EVERY LITTLE CHILD
Barry Gibb, Ashley Gibb, Stephen Gibb
no record. US copyright October 2008

NOTHING IS IMPOSSIBLE
Barry Gibb, Ashley Gibb, Douglas Emery
no record. US copyright November 2008

I AM THE WORLD (NEW VERSION)
Robin Gibb, Peter-John Vettese
album cut by Robin Gibb, 2014. US copyright November 2008, June 2009.

WHEREVER YOU GO
[ WING AND A PRAYER ]
Robin Gibb
digital single by Robin Gibb, 2008. album cut by Robin Gibb, 2014. US copyright November 2008, June 2009.

SANCTUARY
Robin Gibb, Peter-John Vettese
album cut by Robin Gibb, 2014. US copyright November 2008, June 2009.

ANNIVERSARY
Robin Gibb, Peter-John Vettese
album cut by Robin Gibb, 2014. US copyright November 2008, June 2009.

DON’T CRY ALONE
Robin Gibb, Peter-John Vettese
album cut by Robin Gibb, 2012, 2014. US copyright November 2008, June 2009.

WANTED
Robin Gibb, Peter-John Vettese
no record. US copyright November 2008, June 2009

CHERISH
Robin Gibb, Peter-John Vettese
album cut by Robin Gibb, 2014. US copyright November 2008, June 2009.

BROKEN WINGS
Robin Gibb
album cut by Robin Gibb, 2014. US copyright November 2008.

SORRY
Robin Gibb, Peter-John Vettese
album cut by Robin Gibb, 2014. US copyright November 2008, June 2009.

INSTANT LOVE
Robin Gibb, Robin-John Gibb
album cut by Robin Gibb, 2014. 2008.

MY PERSONAL 9/11
Robin Gibb, Peter-John Vettese
no record. 2008, US copyright June 2009

ALL WE HAVE IS NOW
Robin Gibb, Peter-John Vettese
album cut by Robin Gibb, 2014. 2008, US copyright June 2009.

SOLID
Robin Gibb, Peter-John Vettese
album cut by Robin Gibb, 2014. 2008, US copyright June 2009.

DON’T GO NOW
Robin Gibb, Peter-John Vettese
no record. 2008, US copyright June 2009

Barry wrote at least three songs this year.

Robin said he wrote a lot of songs in 2008, possibly more than are listed here. He mentioned in November 2008 a song (not identified) ‘that I wrote with Pete’ and as it turns out almost all were copyright with Peter-John Vettese as co-writer.

There are US copyright filings from 2008 and 2009. The latter (not online until 2010) state explicitly that Robin has ‘Authorship: 65%’ and Peter-John 35%. The song ‘I Am the World (New Version)’ includes most of Robin’s 1966 song ‘I Am the World’ and new material. ‘Cherish’ was not the song of the same name written by Robin and Michael Graves in 2005.

In 2009 Robin put clips on his web site of ‘Instant Love’, ‘Cherish’, and ‘My Personal 9/11’ (under the title ‘911’).


recording sessions


Valeriya

Valeriya — vocal
Robin Gibb — vocal
Hazel Kaniswaren — vocal
George De Angelis — keyboards
engineer: George De Angelis, Savvas Iosifides (Spirit Studio)
producer: George De Angelis
January 2008, Soniczoo, London, and Spirit Studio, London

STAYIN’ ALIVE
Barry Gibb, Robin Gibb, Maurice Gibb (1977)
undated, 19 January 2008
stereo, lead vocal Valeriya
Out of Control, March 2008

Valeriya, a top-selling recording artist in her native Russia, enlisted Robin as backup singer on a new recording of ‘Stayin’ Alive’ for her album Out of Control, released in March in Russia and scheduled for August 2008 in Britain. The song with video appeared on her MySpace page in April 2008. She recorded a new Robin Gibb song later this year (see below).

Robin’s vocal was done January 19 at Spirit Studio. The rest was done previously at Soniczoo.


Olivia Newton-John and Barry Gibb

Olivia Newton-John — vocal
Barry Gibb — vocal
Stephen Gibb — guitar
Doug Emery — keyboard
Hal Roland — keyboard
Lee Levin — drums
engineer: Ethan Carlson
producer: Barry Gibb
probably January or February 2008, Crompton Songs Studios, Miami Beach

THE HEART KNOWS
Barry Gibb, Ashley Gibb, Stephen Gibb (2007)
undated 2008
stereo 3:28, lead vocal Olivia Newton-John, Barry Gibb
A Celebration in Song, May 2008

Olivia Newton-John recorded an album of duets with various singers to raise funds to create the Olivia Newton-John Cancer and Wellness Centre in Melbourne, Australia. Barry sings on ‘The Heart Knows’, a new original song. Olivia also put together a charity event called the Great Walk to Beijing that took place throughout April.

Cliff Richard recorded a duet with Olivia for the same project at Barry’s studio Crompton Songs Studios in Miami Beach, but the song, ‘Find a Little Faith’ is by project producer Amy Sky.


Robin Gibb

Robin Gibb — vocal
Makis Georgiadis — keyboards, arranger Savvas Iosifides — guitar, arranger Terry Johnston — guitar producer: Savvas Iosifides
early 2008, England

WING AND A PRAYER [WHEREVER YOU GO]
Robin Gibb (2008)
undated 2008
stereo 3:12, lead vocal Robin Gibb
digital single, December 2008
stereo 3:29, lead vocal Robin Gibb
50 St Catherine’s Drive, 2014

‘Wing and a Prayer’ is not the 1988 song of the same title by Barry, Robin and Maurice, but it does include part of an earlier composition, namely a few lines of Robin’s unreleased 1970 song ‘Sing Slowly Sisters’. In 2014 the title was changed to ‘Wherever You Go’ to avoid confusion. The version on 50 St Catherine’s Drivehas been remixed and runs longer.

Robin wrote in December 2008, ‘It had originally been intended for a third party project but I eventually abandoned the idea, and I did not submit the track for my new solo album either.’ Instead he released it on his web page in December as a digital single for fans. This recording is considered a demo or home recording, and it is not part of the set Robin recorded with Peter-John Vettese for a proposed album.


Robin Gibb

Robin Gibb — vocal
Peter-John Vettese — keyboards, programming, vocal
Dario Cortez — guitar (‘Anniversary&rsquol;, ‘Sanctuary’)
Mark ‘Tufty’ Evans — guitar (‘Anniversary’, ‘I Am the World (New Version)’)
Valeriya — vocal (‘Broken Wings’)
engineer: Mark ‘Tufty’ Evans
producer: Peter-John Vettese
March 2008 to mid 2008, England

SANCTUARY
Robin Gibb, Peter-John Vettese (2008)
undated 2008
stereo 3:36, lead vocal Robin Gibb
50 St Catherine’s Drive, 2014

ANNIVERSARY
Robin Gibb, Peter-John Vettese (2008)
undated 2008
stereo 3:47, lead vocal Robin Gibb
50 St Catherine’s Drive, 2014

These two have Dario Cortez on acoustic guitar. He also played on ‘Alan Freeman Days’ and this raises the possibility the tracks were begun at the same time, in 2007.

DON’T CRY ALONE
Robin Gibb, Peter-John Vettese (2008)
undated 2008
stereo, lead vocal Robin Gibb
unreleased undated 2008, 2011
stereo 3:23, lead vocal Robin Gibb
The Titanic Requiem, 2012. 50 St Catherine’s Drive, 2014

For The Titanic Requiem the vocal track of ‘Don’t Cry Alone’ was lifted from the 2008 recording and combined with new orchestral backing recorded in 2011. The original version, unreleased, may have had guitars by Tufty Evans, who plays on ‘Anniversary’ and ‘I Am the World (New Version)’.

I AM THE WORLD (NEW VERSION)
Robin Gibb, Peter-John Vettese (1966, 2008)
undated 2008
stereo 3:57, lead vocal Robin Gibb
50 St Catherine’s Drive, 2014

This song contains the verse and chorus of ‘I Am the World’ from 1966, but not the intro piece, and adds new melodic and lyric sections.

WANTED
Robin Gibb, Peter-John Vettese (2008)
undated 2008
stereo, lead vocal Robin Gibb
unreleased

CHERISH
Robin Gibb, Peter-John Vettese (2008)
undated 2008
stereo 3:43, lead vocal Robin Gibb
50 St Catherine’s Drive, 2014

This is the ‘Cherish’ song that Robin started writing for the Streisand project in 2004, ‘part of the melody and a few lyrics’ according to Dwina Gibb’s notes. His intention was to leave space for Barry to collaborate, but that did not happen, and Robin finished it up with Peter-John Vettese instead. It is not the same as ‘Cherish’ by Robin and Michael Graves from 2005, which was retitled ‘All That I Cherish’.

BROKEN WINGS [DON’T GO]
Robin Gibb, Peter-John Vettese (2008)
undated 2008
stereo, lead vocal Robin Gibb
unreleased

The first recording of ‘Broken Wings’ had only Robin vocal. The one on 50 St Catherine’s Drive might be this one but evidence suggests it is a remix of the second recording (see below).

SORRY
Robin Gibb, Peter-John Vettese (2008)
undated 2008
stereo, lead vocal Robin Gibb
50 St Catherine’s Drive, 2014

Robin revealed in March that he was working with Peter-John Vettese on a group of original songs, and later he said that he had spent most of April 2008 in the studio.

Robin told the press in July that he was preparing an album to be called 50 St Catherine’s Drive, the address of a house on the Isle of Man where the Gibb family lived in his childhood. In October he said that the collection was done and that his people were arranging for release. The album as finally released in 2014 included most of the songs here together with a few others recorded earlier and later.


Valeriya and Robin Gibb

Valeriya — vocal
Robin Gibb — vocal
others unknown
mid 2008, London

BROKEN WINGS
Robin Gibb, Peter-John Vettese (2008)
undated
stereo, lead vocal Valeriya, Robin Gibb
no release
stereo (remix) 4:25, lead vocal Robin Gibb
50 St Catherine’s Drive, 2014

The second version of ‘Broken Wings’ was a completely new recording with a duet vocal by Valeriya and Robin. She mentioned it to the press in April 2009 as a song that would appear on one of her records, but Robin also wanted to include it in his proposed album. Promotional video and stills were taken of the two of them together.

A so-called ‘pre-release mix’ of the song by Valeriya was leaked in October 2010. This remix made by Valeriya’s team was never released.

The track released on 50 St Catherine’s Drive was probably made from this version, with Valeriya’s vocal mixed out as much as possible but still present on close listening. Her voice may have been picked up this much on Robin’s microphone. She is duly credited in the notes with ‘additional vocals’ but she is barely featured on the track. What other changes were made in the remix can only be speculated since the original is not available for comparison. The track begins with 35 seconds of noise made up of snippets from ‘Don’t Cry Alone’ played backwards and a wash of background sound that sometimes obscures the vocal.


Robin Gibb

Robin Gibb — vocal
RJ Gibb — vocal (‘Instant Love’)
Peter-John Vettese — keyboards, programming, vocal
engineer: Mark ‘Tufty’ Evans
producer: Peter-John Vettese, Robin Gibb, RJ Gibb
mid 2008, England

INSTANT LOVE
Robin Gibb, Robin-John Gibb (2008)
undated 2008
stereo 4:22, lead vocal Robin Gibb, RJ Gibb
50 St Catherine’s Drive, 2014
stereo 4:08, lead vocal RJ Gibb
Blood Type - The Search film soundtrack, 2009

ALL WE HAVE IS NOW
Robin Gibb, Peter-John Vettese (2008)
undated 2008
stereo 4:03, lead vocal Robin Gibb
50 St Catherine’s Drive, 2014

MY PERSONAL 9/11
Robin Gibb, Peter-John Vettese (2008)
undated 2008
stereo, lead vocal Robin Gibb
unreleased

SOLID
Robin Gibb, Peter-John Vettese (2008)
undated 2008
stereo 4:25, lead vocal Robin Gibb
50 St Catherine’s Drive, 2014

DON’T GO NOW
Robin Gibb, Peter-John Vettese (2008)
undated 2008
stereo, lead vocal Robin Gibb
unreleased

After completing the 2008 album, Robin started tinkering with it, adding and removing songs. In August 2009 he put up a clip of ‘Instant Love’ on his web site, calling it a song from 50 St Catherine’s Drive, and the song was dated as 2008. He wrote it with his son RJ, who also sings on it. An ‘alternate version’ was made with Robin’s lead vocal entirely replaced by a lead vocal by RJ, and this version was slated for a film called Blood Type - The Search which also stars Robin-John. The new vocal might be from 2009.

These songs were not on a USA copyright filing of November, but (except ‘Instant Love’) they were on a demo CD he circulated in August 2008. Reasons for the difference are unknown, but obviously they were recorded by mid year.


Robin Gibb

Robin Gibb vocal track from Bee Gees session, 1998
King William’s College choir — vocal
others unknown
engineer:
producer: DAM Productions / Running Media
November 2008, Isle of Man

ELLAN VANNIN
Eliza Craven Green (1854), J Townsend or F H Townend; Barry Gibb, Robin Gibb, Maurice Gibb (1998)
undated 2008
stereo, lead vocal Robin Gibb
download, December 2008

This new version of the Manx song was made to benefit Hospice Isle of Man. The choir singing with Robin are from King William’s College, a private secondary school corresponding roughly to American middle and high schools. The song is available both as an audio track and as a lip-synch video showing Robin and the choir singing in a church and the choir in scenic locations. The video at least was made in November when Robin visited the Isle, where he officially opened the children’s hospice Rebecca House in Douglas. Profits from downloads go to the hospice.

Robin’s lead vocal track is the same as the 1998 Bee Gees version. This recording is called the ‘Homecoming Mix’ since it is in effect a mix of the 1998 recording, albeit with only the lead vocal the same.

Plans were announced for a DVD to be released in 2009 that would include this video, Manx artists performing other Gibb songs, and more scenery video of the Isle.


selected record releases


Valeriya : Out of Control
Russia : March 2008; UK: August 2008

  STAYIN’ ALIVE

Robin sings backing vocals with Russian pop star Valeriya.


Deal
US: Lightyear, April 2008.

  Barry Gibb : DROWN ON THE RIVER

Deal is a film about poker players starring Burt Reynolds and Bret Harrison. The film was originally scheduled for release in September 2007, weeks after Barry released ‘Drown on the River’ on iTunes. Instead it was released direct to DVD in Europe around February 2008, and to ‘select theaters’ in the United States at the end of April, when the soundtrack CD also finally appeared.

Just over one minute of Barry’s song appears in a poker scene. The ‘river’ is the last card drawn, and it is dealt face up. To ‘drown in the river’ is to lose a hand because of that last card. In the scene, a losing player sees the last card come up an ace, as Barry sings the title line.


Olivia Newton-John and Friends : A Celebration in Song
Australia : WM Australia, May 2008.

  Olivia Newton-John and Barry Gibb : THE HEART KNOWS

This album of duets with Olivia Newton-John, for the Olivia Newton-John Cancer Center Appeal, includes Barry singing with her on a new song, ‘The Heart Knows’.


Songs from the British Academy volume 1
UK : Academy Recordings (download), May 2008.

  Robin Gibb : ALAN FREEMAN DAYS

This is a digital-only album of songs by members of the British Academy including Cliff Richard, the Pretenders, Boy George, Peter Gabriel, and K T Tunstall. Robin’s song ‘Alan Freeman Days’ could also be purchased separately.

For some months, an unexpected rights problem to two songs (unrelated to Robin) held up worldwide release of this package and of Robin’s song.


Luna Park
download: Mo’s Records, June 2008.

01 SINCE YOU’VE BEEN GONE
02 TELL ME WHAT YOU LIKE
03 TOMORROW
04 HOW WAS I TO KNOW?
05 PLAY IT UP
06 IT’S OKAY
07 UNTIL YOU
08 ONE BY ONE
09 DANCE WITH ME
10 TAKE A DEEP BREATH
11 I WENT HOME
12 HUMMINGBIRD LOVE

These songs were recorded from 1998 to 2000 by Samantha Gibb, Laz Rodriguez, and Adam Gibb under the group names Luna Park and Skylla. Maurice produced and probably plays on them too, and John Merchant recorded. Laz plays guitar and Adam plays keyboard. Additional musicians (a drummer at least) are unknown.

On the CD and for a while on the download, the song ‘Play It Up’ appeared twice, under its own name and under the title ‘It’s Okay’. The download has been corrected. For those affected, the real ‘It’s Okay’ is available by email request (see www.megmusic.net).

For fanatics, here is a table of Luna Park, Skylla, and MEG recordings arranged by sessions (the only unknown recording date is for ‘I Went Home’), showing where they are available:

Rec Title Releases
 
1998       UNTIL YOU Luna Park
HUMMINGBIRD LOVE Luna Park
HOW WAS I TO KNOW? Luna Park, [98]
PLAYING CUPID —, [98]
 
1998 SINCE YOU’VE BEEN GONE Luna Park, [98]
IT’S OKAY Luna Park, [98]
BACK WHERE I STARTED AGAIN    
 
1999 TOMORROW I’LL BE GONE Luna Park
ONE BY ONE Luna Park
TAKE A DEEP BREATH Luna Park
 
? I WENT HOME Luna Park
 
2000 DANCE WITH ME Luna Park, [01]
EVIL SIDE —, [01]
WHEN I’M WITH YOU MEG, MEG ep, [01]
TELL ME WHAT YOU LIKE Luna Park, [01]
DON’T LOOK MY WAY MEG, [01]
PLAY IT UP Luna Park, [01]
GIVING IN MEG, [01]
DID I GO TOO FAR —, [01]
INSIDE MY HEAD MEG, MEG ep
 
2002 ON AND ON MEG
TURN AWAY MEG, MEG ep
BABY IT’S YOU MEG
LET GO MEG
NO REASON MEG
 
2004 ALL THE TIME MEG, MEG ep
EYES MEG ep
SIDES TO YOU MEG
CAN’T GO BACK MEG

Releases: [98] = Luna Park, 4 song promo CD, 1998 ; [01] = Skylla, 8 song demo CD, 2001 ; MEG ep = MEG, 5-song EP, 2004 ; MEG = MEG, 12-song CD, 2005 ; Luna Park = Luna Park, 12 song download album, 2008 ; — = not released (promo and demo are not actual releases).

Samantha, Laz, and Nik continue to perform mainly in the Nashville area where they live. The name of the band was changed at the end of 2009 to Samantha Gibb and the Cartel.


Jamie Jo : single
US : Oden Media (download), September 2008.

  U TURN ME ON

Barry sings backing vocals.


Robin Gibb : 50 St Catherine’s Drive
proposed, 2008

01 AVALANCHE [2]
02 SANCTUARY
03 DAYS OF WINE AND ROSES
04 ANNIVERSARY
05 DON’T CRY ALONE
06 MOTHER OF LOVE
07 I AM THE WORLD
08 WANTED
09 CHERISH
10 BROKEN WINGS
11 SORRY

This is the content of ‘RG 2008 Solo Project’, a compact disk filed at the US copyright office in November 2008. It seems to be an early version of 50 St Catherine’s Drive, but not too much should be made of the sequence of songs. The primary purpose of the filing was to protect the copyrights. The order may be simply what was handy for the engineer at the time. ‘Alan Freeman Days’ is missing, but it was already protected earlier.


Bee Gees : Number Ones
US: Reprise, October 2008; UK: Reprise, October 2008

(same as the 2004 release on Polydor UK)

Best of Bee Gees
US: Reprise, November 2008; UK: Reprise, November 2008

(same as the previous CD releases)

Best of Bee Gees, volume 2
US: Reprise, November 2008; UK: Reprise, November 2008

(same as the previous CD releases)

Bee Gees : Love Songs
US: Reprise, December 2008; UK: Reprise, January 2009

(same as the 2005 release on Universal US)

Two years after the well-received box set of First, Horizontal, and Idea, one year after tossing hungry fans the bone of one unreleased song on Greatest, Barry and Robin saw the calendar pages falling and felt moved to authorize... this.

The packages are the same as before, but with Reprise labels. There is almost nothing here for fans, and who else is still buying Bee Gees hits collections? Well, maybe the outlook is not so bleak as that. But most of the hits are now from 30 to 42 years old, beyond the memory of a large chunk of the music buying public, so these disks are not going to sell themselves. It’s time for each one to have a good booklet of liner notes, and, a crazy thought, a fresh look at the song selection.

Best of is the only one that sounds different. Most of the songs are the new masters from the 2006 box set. ‘Words’ is the first remastered release of the bad stereo mix that was used on previous Best of packages but did not appear in the 2006 box. Obviously cleaner sound does not correct its problems. ‘First of May’ is a preview of the remastered Odessa, and the mono mix of ‘Tomorrow Tomorrow’ is a preview of the remastered Cucumber Castle, whenever that is coming. The original LP Best of had ‘Spicks and Specks’ on it, but the CD always had a mono mix of ‘Tomorrow Tomorrow’ instead, so that is what appears here.


Night of the Proms ’08
Germany: December 2008.

01 Angels in Harlem Gospel Choir : I BELIEVE I CAN FLY
02 Dennis De Young : MR ROBOTO
03 Dennis De Young : BABE
04 Kim Wilde : CAMBODIA
05 Kim Wilde : KIDS IN AMERICA
06 Il Novecento : OUVERTURE 1812
07 Tears for Fears : MAD WORLD
08 Tears for Fears : SOWING THE SEEDS OF LOVE
09 Igudesmann & Joo : ALLA MOLTO TURKA
10 Angels in Harlem Gospel Choir : BEETHOVEN GOES JOYFUL
11 10cc : DREADLOCK HOLIDAY
12 10cc : I’M NOT IN LOVE
13 Il Novecento : ADAGIO AUS ‘SPARTACUS’
14 Robin Gibb : JULIET

Night of the Proms is an annual concert series in Europe that has since 1985 featured many top names performing a mixture of pop and classical music. The 2008 series began at the end of October in Belgium and the Netherlands, and continued, with partly different artists, at venues in Germany (November 28 to December 21). This souvenir CD featuring all the artists at the German series was rush recorded to be sold at each show. Robin sings his German hit ‘Juliet’ accompanied by the show’s symphony orchestra, Il Novecento.


Robin Gibb : single
download, December 2008.

01WING AND A PRAYER [WHEREVER YOU GO]
02TO LOVE SOMEBODY

This digital single, two songs, was available from Robin’s web site. The A side still had only its original title ‘Wing and a Prayer’. The virtual B side, a nice acoustic take of ‘To Love Somebody’, was available for listening on his web page, and it may be the version he recorded in 2005.


Robin Gibb : single
download, December 2008.

 ELLAN VANNIN

A new version with accompaniment from the children’s choir of King William’s College, Isle of Man. The download, in audio and video formats, benefits Hospice Isle of Man.