When Andy Gibb and Olivia Newton-John sang a sizzling duet of Bee Gees hit ‘Rest Your Love On Me’

15 January 2021, 17:02 | Updated: 15 January 2021, 17:25

The energy between Olivia Newton-John and Andy Gibb is palpable and lead to them recording a single for Andy's new album just a few months later.
The energy between Olivia Newton-John and Andy Gibb is palpable and lead to them recording a single for Andy's new album just a few months later. Picture: NBC

The pair were performing at the Music for UNICEF Concert in New York in 1979 and where were joined by the Bee Gees, Rod Stewart, Donna Summer and ABBA to raise money for world hunger programmes.

Olivia Newton-John and Andy Gibb were icons of the late '70s music scene and it was natural that the two superstars would collaborate on a duet.

Taking to the stage on January 9, 1979 the pair sat opposite one other on high chairs and gave a stunningly heartfelt performance of the delicate Bee Gees song 'Rest Your Love On Me'.

See more: The greatest Bee Gees songs of all time, ranked

While rumours of whether the two dated have never been confirmed, the energy between the two is palpable and lead to them recording a single for Andy's new album just a few months later.

Taking to the stage on January 9, 1979 the pair sat opposite one other on high chairs and gave a stunningly heartfelt performance of the delicate Bee Gees song 'Rest Your Love On Me'
Taking to the stage on January 9, 1979 the pair sat opposite one other on high chairs and gave a stunningly heartfelt performance of the delicate Bee Gees song 'Rest Your Love On Me'. Picture: NBC
Olivia Newton-John and Andy Gibb were icons of the late '70s music scene and it was natural that the two superstars would collaborate on a duet.
Olivia Newton-John and Andy Gibb were icons of the late '70s music scene and it was natural that the two superstars would collaborate on a duet. Picture: NBC
The apir sang Bee Gees hit 'Rest Your Love on Me',written by Barry Gibb in 1976.
The apir sang Bee Gees hit 'Rest Your Love on Me',written by Barry Gibb in 1976. Picture: NBC

Olivia and the youngest Gibb brother were performing at The Music for UNICEF Concert: A Gift of Song, a gig held to raise money for world hunger programs and to mark the beginning of 1979's International Year of the Child.

See more: 11 amazing facts about the life and career of Olivia Newton-John

The concert was the brainchild of the Bee Gees and David Frost and was held at the United Nations General Assembly in New York City which saw performers including the Bee Gees, Rod Stewart, ABBA, Donna Summer and Earth, Wind and Fire donate royalties of the song they performed to UNICEF.

The biggest pop and disco stars of the time were roped in by the Gibb brothers for the one-off gig and saw each act sing one of their own hit songs, alongside special appearances from Henry Fonda, David Frost and Henry 'The Fonz' Winkler.

See more: When Andy Gibb joined the Bee Gees for a rare phenomenal performance of 'You Should Be Dancing'

The incredible show culminated in a beautiful medley of Jackie DeShannon's 'Put A Little Bit Of Love In Your Heart' by all the acts and was recorded and televised the following day on NBC and across the world.

Olivia and the youngest Gibb brother were performing at The Music for UNICEF Concert: A Gift of Song
Olivia and the youngest Gibb brother were performing at The Music for UNICEF Concert: A Gift of Song. Picture: NBC
The biggest pop and disco stars of the time were roped in by the Gibb brothers for the one-off gig
The biggest pop and disco stars of the time were roped in by the Gibb brothers for the one-off gig. Picture: NBC

The Bee Gees decided to give all of the publishing royalties of the single to UNICEF and as of 2003, 'Too Much Heaven' had earned a staggering over seven million dollars for the charity.

See more: The day ABBA, Bee Gees, Olivia Newton-John, Rod Stewart and Andy Gibb sang a staggering medley

Filmed when Andy Gibb was only 21-years-old, the 1979 event 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.

Later in 1979 Andy Gibb and Olivia Newton-John collaborated once again on a song written by Barry Gibb for Andy's new album.

See more: Andy Gibb: Remembering the life and career of the Bee Gees' younger brother

Released in 1980, the duet was called 'I Can't Help It' and appeared alongside their 1979 duet 'Rest Your Love On Me' as the sixth and seventh tracks on Andy's album After Dark.

Just two years after the UNICEF concert 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.

See more: When Andy Gibb sang 'White Christmas' in 1981 and it was sensational

Maurice, Barry and Andy Gibb pictured in rehearsals with Olivia Newton-John at the 1979 UNICEF event.
Maurice, Barry and Andy Gibb pictured in rehearsals with Olivia Newton-John in 1979. Picture: Getty
Andy would go twice to drug rehabilitation and in 1988 planned a come back and a record deal with Island Records. Pictured in 1982.
Andy would go twice to drug rehabilitation and in 1988 planned a come back and a record deal with Island Records. Pictured in 1982. Picture: Getty

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.

See more: Barry Gibb releases love song 'Butterfly' he wrote with brothers Robin and Maurice when they were kids

Despite the Bee Gees also announcing Andy Gibb would be officially joining their group as their fourth band member in 1988, Robin would later say that Andy was suffering: "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.

See more: Barry Gibb and son Stephen perform stunning lockdown medley of stripped back Bee Gees hits

Barry Gibb spoke of Andy's death in the 2000 official Bee Gees biography, Tales From The Brothers Gibb, saying, "To me Andy's problems were not drugs and booze -- to me they were a massive insecurity, psychological problems, compounded by drink and cocaine.

"Maybe they also caused it, but at the end of the day (he) had no confidence in himself, yet had a lot of talent. . . he seemed to have lost the will or desire to use it."

See more: When Olivia Newton-John and John Travolta reunited after 24 years to sing ‘You’re The One That I Want’

The UNICEF event came nine years before the Bee Gees would officially announce he would be joining them as the fourth member of the band. Pictured performing as a foursome in 1979.
The UNICEF event came nine years before the Bee Gees would officially announce he would be joining them as the fourth member of the band. Pictured performing as a foursome in 1979. Picture: Getty

Andy's brothers 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.”

See more: QUIZ: How well do you know the Bee Gees' song lyrics?

“It was the saddest moment of my life,” Barry Gibb said in a 2014 Rolling Stone interview and admitted he felt guilty for pushing Andy towards showbiz.

“He would have been better off finding something else,” Barry said. “He was a sweet person. We lost him too young.”