Robin Gibb, a member of the fraternal trio that created some of the most recognizable sounds of the disco era as the Bee Gees, died Sunday in Oxfordshire, England. He was 62.
The family of Robin Gibb, of the Bee Gees, announce with great sadness that Robin passed away today following his long battle with cancer and intestinal surgery, the family said in a statement posted on the artist's website.
Robin, Barry, and Maurice Gibb sold more 100 million albums as the Bee Gees. They had six of their hits rocket to No. 1 on the Billboard charts from 1977 to 1979, including Stayin' Alive from the smash film Saturday Night Fever starring John Travolta and Karen Lynn Gorney.
Twins Robin and Maurice were born Dec. 22, 1949, on the Isle of Man, three years after Barry. The brothers grew up in humble conditions in Manchester, England. The family moved to Australia in 1958, and it was there the Bee Gees (which stands for the Brothers Gibb) began performing.
The band's first record was released in 1963, with a sound reminiscent of the ballads of the late 1950s and early '60s. By 1967, they were back in London signing a record deal. It was under the direction of Australian entertainment executive Robert Stigwood -- famous for producing Hair and Jesus Christ Superstar -- that the band began its evolution toward what would later lift its members to international fame.
The brothers had their first No. 1 single in the U.S. with How Can You Mend A Broken Heart in 1971. After a brief period when financial straits had them performing back in England to pay off debts, Atlantic Records sent the trio to Miami to experiment with a Latin style. The move led two more No. 1 singles: Jive Talkin' and Nights on Broadway.
But it was the Saturday Night Fever soundtrack in 1977 that became the band's most successful release, producing four No. 1 singles. It wasn't until Michael Jackson's Thriller in 1982 that an album sold more copies. After the band's 1979 release Spirits Have Flown it seemed the post-punk and hair-band era caught up with the brothers. The popularity of both disco and the Bee Gees waned quickly with the rise of the MTV generation. The band was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1997.
Doug Wright, a representative of the late performer, confirmed to The Sun in April that Robin had aquired a second tumor and a battle with pneumonia after being diagnosed with colon and liver cancer.
Gibb is survived by his daughters Melissa and Snow, sons Spencer and Robin-John, sister Lesley, and mother, according to the New York Times. CNN reported he is survived also by his wife Dwina.
Eldest brother Barry, 65, is the last surviving Bee Gee.