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4 January 2021, 17:23
Andy Gibb got on stage with the Bee Gees for an impromptu performance of 'You Should Be Dancing' in 1979 and blew the audience away.
The Bee Gees were in the midst of their Spirits Having Flown tour when they welcomed their younger brother Andy on stage for a rendition of one of their greatest disco hits 'You Should Be Dancing'.
Filmed at the Oakland Coliseum Arena in California by a film crew following the band on tour, the footage wasn't publicly shown until November 21, 1979.
Featured on The Bee Gees Special, a 90-minute one-off NBC broadcast celebrating the '70s superstars, the footage shows the moment when the three Bee Gees became four and sang a stunning live version of the hit song.
Filmed when Andy Gibb was only 21-years-old, the performance came nine years before the Bee Gees would officially announce he would be joining them as the fourth member of the band, just months before his untimely death in 1988.
The youngest Gibb brother fought a battle with drug addiction all of his life and would eventually succumb to it, dying from a heart attack caused by cocaine use when he was just 30-years-old.
Just two years after the performance was filmed Andy Gibb would become host of music television show Solid Gold in 1981 and 1982 and performed in Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat on Broadway, but he was eventually sadly fired from both jobs due to his absenteeism.
Broadway producer Zev Bruffman said of Andy's time as an actor: "When Andy was at the theater, he was a joy. But he wasn't there enough."
"We'd lose him over long weekends," he added. "He'd come back on Tuesday, and he'd look beat. He was like a little puppy—so ashamed when he did something wrong. He was all heart, but he didn't have enough muscle to carry through."
“The most embarrassing thing for me was the day Bob Hope called,” Andy later told an interviewer of his days of heavy drug use.
“I was supposed to do his TV special and didn’t turn up. Consequently, I was blacklisted by NBC for a long time. I damaged my career.”
Over the next few years Andy would go twice to drug rehabilitation and in 1988 planned a come back and a record deal with Island Records.
But the deal was never signed, and despite the Bee Gees also announcing Andy Gibb would be officially joining their group as the fourth Bee Gee in 1988, Andy was suffering.
Robin Gibb would later say of Andy's state of mind in the spring of 1988 that he "just went downhill so fast... he was in a terrible state of depression."
Just two days after celebrating his 30th birthday in London and while working on his new album, Andy was admitted to hospital in Oxford where he complained of chest pains and died not long afterwards.
After his death, his ex-wife Kim Reeder said: "I always knew that one day I'd get a call with news like this. It was only a matter of time." The Bee Gees made a statement to confirm Andy didn't die of a drug overdose – as it was widely reported – but from the side-effects of many years of drug use.
Andy's brothers all spoke publicly of Andy's wonderful personality in the years following his death.
“A lot of people remember particularly his kindness,” Maurice Gibb told VH1. “Because he helped a lot of people. He just couldn’t help himself.”
“It was the saddest moment of my life,” he said and admitted he felt guilty for pushing Andy toward showbiz.
“He would have been better off finding something else,” Barry said. “He was a sweet person. We lost him too young.”
But it wouldn't be the final tragedy for the Gibb brothers: Barry's brother Robin Gibb passed away in 2012 after battling cancer for a number of years, while Robin's twin brother Maurice Gibb died in 2003 due to complications of a twisted intestine.
In a recent interview Barry has admitted he cannot bring himself to watch the new critically-acclaimed documentary The Bee Gees: How Can You Mend a Broken Heart.
"I can't handle watching the rest of my family. I just can't handle it," Barry told CBS Sunday Morning on January 3.
"Who would? I think it's perfectly normal to not want to see how each brother was lost, you know? And I don't want to address it. I'm past it.
"The first year after the last brother passed, Robin, that was the most difficult period for me. And people have said, 'He had a breakdown.' You know, I didn't have a breakdown, actually," he continued.
"I just didn't know where to go. I didn't know what to do. And I didn't know how to be perceived. I didn't know how to perceive other people's opinions," said Barry. "So basically, I've been in lockdown for years now!"