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Sunday, May 20, 2012

R.I.P. Robin Gibb

What is it about nostalgia?  I'm not really a fan of it. I enjoy things from earlier eras, but that isn't really nostalgia.  Real nostalgia involves the idealization of your own past. But the truth is that here is no such thing as the good old days.  Every era has its good bits and its bad bits, but 1970s nostalgia seems particularly funny to me, considering how depressing the 1970s were to so many people at the time.  Still, I'm not completely immune to nostalgia.  Even though I spent large portions of the '70s wanting it all to end,  there are aspects of it which I look back on with real fondness.  I was never a Bee Gees fan at the time, especially the disco-era Bee Gees, which is how most people remember them, I have gained a certain fondness for their music, Saturday Night Fever and its ilk.  If you look at the career of the Bee Gees, you can see that they were musical gadflies, joining in on almost every musical trend of the sixties and seventies, from folk and Mersey beat to psychedelic and glam, until they got stuck into the glue trap of disco, from which there was no escape. They were not in the vanguard of disco, but they became the face of disco,  and that was both their blessing and their curse. Sure, there was a time when Staying Alive was like fingernails on a chalkboard to me, but I don't feel like that any more. Today I find it almost... comforting.  With Robin Gibbs' passing, there is only one Gibb brother left. I wish him, Barry, all the best.  The Bee Gees, in their day,  made a lot of people feel better about their lives, and there are worse things you can do.


  1. I was totally embarrassed to own a copy of Saturday Night Fever when I was a teen. Recently I took it out and had a good time playing it.

  2. I was never much of Bee Gees fan either. But I did rather like this old song. I secretly dedicated it to each and every one of my unrequited high school loves.