Andy Gibb – Biography
Andy Gibb, one of the members of The Bee Gees family, mistaken by many to be an Australian, was in fact born in Manchester, England. His mother was Barbara and father, Hugh Gibb. He was six when the Gibbs fammily re-located to Australia. Andy Gibbs was the youngest among the family of five. His sister was Lesley Evans and he has three brothers, Barry and fraternal twins Robin and Maurice. Barry, Maurice and Robin went onto form The Bee Gees. Andy did not join his brothers but moved back to United Kingdom in January 1967 to seek his own fortunes.
In the UK, Andy Gibb started singing as a teenager, doing gigs at tourist clubs and other places. He even went on to form his own group called Melody Fayre, with his mother Barbara as their manager. In early 1974, Andy recorded a single titled, “My Father Was a Reb” which was written, produced and played on by his brother Maurice . It was, however, never released.
Not making much headway, Barry urged Andy to returned to Australia in 1974, believing that the Bee Gess who had gained considerable fame, could help their younger brother. Andy eventually recorded his first single titled “Words and Music” on the ATA label. The single, backed by another Andy Gibb composition “Westfield Mansions”, would eventually reach the Top Twenty on the Sydney music charts in 1976.
In early 1976, Robert Stigwood, the Bee Gees’ manager at the time, signed Andy to his label, RSO Records. Andy moved to Miami Beach, Florida, to begin working on songs with his brother Barry and co-producers Albhy Galuten and Karl Richardson.
Andy Gibb’s career took off in Miami around mid 1976 with several hit albums right up to the 89s when he got himself addicted to cocaine. From then on, his career went on a decline.
In early February 1988, Robin Gibb in an interview said Andy was healthy and ready to begin recording again.Three weeks before Andy died, Robin said “he just went downhill so fast”, saying “he was in a terrible state of depression”. He got over the drugs but the depression remained. On 5 March 1988, Andy Gibb celebrated his 30th birthday in London, while working on the new album. Soon after, he entered John Radcliffe Hospital in Oxford complaining of chest pains and died five days later on 10 March 1988, as a result of myocarditis, an inflammation of the heart muscle caused by a recent viral infection which was exacerbated by his years of cocaine abuse. Robin Gibb said “he was also not eating properly and the lack of nutrition also damaged his heart”, adding that the paranoia associated with cocaine abuse “shattered his confidence and he became scared of people.”
The Gibb family would also maintain it was not an overdose which killed Andy – as some papers have suggested – but natural causes after years of drug and alcohol abuse.
Gibb’s body was returned to the United States where he was interred at Forest Lawn Memorial Park in Hollywoods Hills, Los Angeles.