Monday, April 14, 2014
The Bee Gees must be one of the best examples of an underrated overexposed band. To call hit makers of such magnitude underrated may seem somewhat perverse, but think about it. The layperson's association with the Bee Gees starts with Saturday Night Fever and ends with a groan. It surprises many to hear that more than 10 studio albums precede Barry's first released attempt at a falsetto.
Few hits penetrate popular culture to such a lasting, international degree as Staying Alive. This dominance is likely an enviable achievement for many songwriters. Certainly the promotion extended to ones finances would be something hard to resist the idea of. I wonder though, if Staying Alive actually serves as an obscurant to the numerous other achievements the Bee Gees legacy embodies.
So much is swept under the rug by a success of that scale. If we can suggest that a smash hit represents a consensus of the public, the inference is that people are most comfortable congregating around that which is generally agreed upon. By that logic the more consensus you have in a discography the less light creeps in around the edges.
Dark Side of The Moon is agreed upon in magazine lists throughout the decades as the best rock album of all time. Saucerful of Secrets likely doesn't crack the 1000 most listened to LP's of our age. Too much consensus.
There isn't a single song you could use to sum up the careers of David Bowie or R. Stevie Moore. Bowie had too many hits of the same size, R. Stevie Moore not a single one. No consensus for either and so as fans we take our pick of favoured eras and albums.
Like ABBA, The Bee Gees were prodigious songwriters whose genius is overshadowed by overexposure and specific association. They are the definition of a deep cuts band. Their albums are in dollar bins all over the world, golden discs mostly unwanted.
My favourite is Trafalgar, but Cucumber Castle and Bee Gee's 1st are great too. If you see those Rare, Precious & Beautiful compilations of their early Australian work, grab them. They are fantastic.
The Bee Gees are rightfully one of the best groups of the 60's and 70's. Have a listen to some of my favourites.
Although I like the SNL skits, this song is has been kind of maligned by them. Great choon.
And did you know Robin's early solo effort was one of the first records to use a drum machine? He also wrote a song called You Are the Worst Girl in This Town. Badass.
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