Private studio footage of Barry Gibb and the Bee Gees recording 'Tragedy' is phenomenal

5 August 2022, 16:40

The Bee Gees were composing and recording 'Tragedy' at Critera Studios, Miami in 1978 when the rare footage was recorded.
The Bee Gees were composing and recording 'Tragedy' at Critera Studios, Miami in 1978 when the rare footage was recorded. Picture: NBC/UMG

Rare footage of Barry, Robin and Maurice Gibb making 'Tragedy' in the 1978 and ribbing Barry for his sound effects, gives a wonderful insight into the trio's relationship and song-writing techniques.

The Bee Gees were composing and recording 'Tragedy' at Critera Studios, Miami in 1978 when the rare footage was recorded.

The video of Robin, Maurice and Barry singing and playing the melody of 'Tragedy' before all three decide they need the sound effect of an 'explosion'.

Barry Gibb then takes to the microphone as he tried to mimic the sound and hilarity ensues as his brothers rib him and mock his efforts from the control room.

The video of the trio shows the brothers singing and playing the melody of 'Tragedy' before all three decide they need the sound effect of an 'explosion'.
The video of the trio shows the brothers singing and playing the melody of 'Tragedy' before all three decide they need the sound effect of an 'explosion'. Picture: NBC/UMG
Barry Gibb then takes to the microphone as he tried to mimic the sound and hilarity ensues as his brothers rib him and mock his efforts from the control room.
Barry Gibb then takes to the microphone as he tried to mimic the sound and hilarity ensues as his brothers rib him and mock his efforts from the control room. Picture: NBC/UMG
The explosion sound made it onto the final recording of 'Tragedy' and it's become a little known secret that it was actually Barry who made the original sound effect.
The explosion sound made it onto the final recording of 'Tragedy' and it's become a little known secret that it was actually Barry who made the original sound effect. Picture: NBC/UMG

Cupping his hands over the microphone and making an explosion sound with his mouth, Barry giggles as he attempts to do it at exactly the right time in the song, before getting it right on his last go.

The explosion sound made it onto the final recording of 'Tragedy' and it's become a little known secret that it was actually Barry Gibb who made the original sound effect.

Footage of the brothers in the Florida studio was recorded as the trio were putting the finishing touches to their 1979 album, Spirits Having Flown.

The original footage was filmed by NBC and aired as The Bee Gees Special, a 90-minute behind-the-scenes TV show broadcast on November 21, 1979.

Footage of the brothers in the Florida studio was recorded as the trio were putting the finishing touches to their 1979 album, Spirits Having Flown.
Footage of the brothers in the Florida studio was recorded as the trio were putting the finishing touches to their 1979 album, Spirits Having Flown. Picture: NBC/UMG
The original footage was filmed by NBC and aired as The Bee Gees Special, a 90-minute behind-the-scenes TV show broadcast on November 21, 1979.
The original footage was filmed by NBC and aired as The Bee Gees Special, a 90-minute behind-the-scenes TV show broadcast on November 21, 1979. Picture: NBC/UMG

The Bee Gees reportedly wrote 'Tragedy' and 'Too Much Heaven' on an afternoon off from filming The Beatles' Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band movie.

'Tragedy' was released as the third single from their 1979 album and knocked Gloria Gaynor's 'I Will Survive' off the number one spot, where it stayed for two weeks.

The video shows the close lifetime bond between the Gibbs, however the trio went through famous periods of estrangement and speaking in 2012, Barry Gibb reflected on the relationship with his brothers and his regrets over their deaths.

"My greatest regret is that every brother I’ve lost was in a moment when we weren’t getting on, so I have to live with that and I’ll spend the rest of my life reflecting on that," he said.

'Tragedy' was released as the third single from the Bee Gees 1979 album and knocked Gloria Gaynor's 'I Will Survive' off the number one spot, where it stayed for two weeks.
'Tragedy' was released as the third single from the Bee Gees 1979 album and knocked Gloria Gaynor's 'I Will Survive' off the number one spot, where it stayed for two weeks. Picture: NBC/UMG

"I’m the last man standing. I’ll never be able to understand that as I’m the eldest."

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.

Their younger brother Andy Gibb died aged just 30 in 1988 after battling drug addiction and depression for many years.