On this day back in 1988 the devastating news broke of the death of Andy Gibb. It was a sad day coming as it did just 5 days after his 30th birthday; secondly, it appeared that he had finally beaten his addictions and he was back in the studio making music that by all accounts would have been his best yet.
The first Andy recording that I heard was the “Shadow Dancing” album. The first side was pretty standard Bee Gees fodder and had a few hit singles taken from this. The other side was all Andy and I felt was missing something – perhaps after being spoiled for choice of the Barry-influenced songs from side 1? I couldn’t really get into it for some reason and for years it remained the only Andy Gibb album I had. It was only after his death that I thought I ought to give the other two albums a listen.
Flowing Rivers was a typical first album showing a few signs of potential greatness. All the songs were strong lyrically but, considering a lot of the songs had been worked on in various forms for a few years before, I was kind of expecting a bit more. Despite this it’s definately the most “Andy” album if that makes sense, and deserves a good listen.
The third album … well, what can one say about After Dark? There were a couple of good moments but this is still my least favourite. Mostly because, like Shadow Dancing, it ended up sounding more like a Bee Gees album.
Unfortunately we shall never know if Andy could have turned his fortunes around. I’d like to think he could have done, and the one song to surface from his last recordings, “Arrow Through The Heart”, shows that he might well have finally been on the right path. It was finally given official release as part of the Bee Gees Mythology CD in November last year.
Andy is sorely missed. He died way too early and never really got the chance to show the world what he was really capable of.