It is a long time coming
For all his accomplishments, there are things Barry Gibb has never done. As one-third of the Bee Gees, Gibb wrote, alone or with brothers Maurice and Robin, British psychedelia, pop, theatrical ballads, blue-eyed soul, disco smashes, and Euro-house. He wrote hits for brother Andy Gibb, Dionne Warwick, Barbra Streisand, and "Islands in the Stream" for Kenny Rogers and Dolly Parton.
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Despite mega-success and tenure in the music biz, Gibb, 67, has had shockingly little opportunity to express himself apart from the Bee Gees: one solo album, Now Voyager, and two albums that he wrote for Streisand, Guilty and Guilty Pleasures. He recorded a baroque-pop effort, 1970's The Kid's No Good, that was shelved, with another unreleased solo, Moonlight Madness, and morphed into a soundtrack for the film Hawks. He has performed solo only infrequently. The deaths of younger brothers Andy (in 1988) and his partners in the Bee Gees, Maurice (2003) and Robin (2012), moved Gibb to go out on his first true solo tour, which lands in Philadelphia on Monday at the Wells Fargo Center.
"It was time," he says from his home in Miami.
Why the dearth of solo work? Well, in short, the other brothers Gibb didn't like it. "My heart wasn't in making solo records with all that," Gibb says. "We were brothers, but if you stepped too far out, somebody would pull you back in. You couldn't go too far on your own. There was always that conflict." Gibb stops, and stifles a laugh. "Why do you think I titled that Streisand album after something guilty? Having success on my own meant having to not really talk about it. It's not as if my brothers ever mentioned me winning a Grammy for that record with Barbra, let alone congratulate me." He pauses. "There it is reports philly.com."