The Bee Gees’ public image has long been dominated by the sibling trio's massively successful comeback as one of the most popular acts of the 70s Disco era. But brothers Barry, Robin and Maurice Gibb had already achieved international stardom and built a unique and accomplished body of recordings long before they became the white-suited dancefloor smoothies whose Saturday Night Fever soundtrack album burned itself deeply into popular culture.
Eldest sibling Barry and twins Robin and Maurice were born in England, moving with their family to Austrailia in 1958, when they were in their early teens. Performing as a trio, they soon achieved local notoriety, and by the early '60s, the brothers were performing on TV, and writing and recording their own songs. By 1967, the Gibbs had returned to England and released Bee Gees 1st, which introduced non-Australians to their instantly recognizable harmonies and unique strain of baroque songcraft, which fit well amidst the last echoes of the British Invasion and the first stirrings of psychedelia. The band continued to reap creative and commercial success with such 60s albums as Horizontal, Idea and Odessa.
By the early 70s, the Bee Gees' popularity had waned considerably. But they staged an unexpected comeback by tapping into an R&B influence, first with 1975's Main Course and its synthesizer-dominated single "Jive Talkin'," and later with 1977's massively successful, Disco-centric Saturday Night Fever soundtrack. The latter release spawned three No. 1 Bee Gees singles — "How Deep Is Your Love," "Stayin' Alive" and "Night Fever" — and established the brothers as a dominant musical force during that era. Not surprisingly, they couldn't maintain that level of success, but the Bee Gees remained a popular recording and touring act up until Maurice's sudden death in 2003. Barry and Robin had reportedly contemplated reviving the Bee Gees as a duo prior to Robin's passing in 2012.