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Welcome to the world of the Vincent D'Onofrio obsessed - and a bit of real life thrown in.

Monday, May 21, 2012

Memento Mori

Thoughts of my own mortality creep closer every time an icon of my youth dies. The latest is Robin Gibb, gone too soon to join his twin Maurice in that great communal grave in the ground. (Sorry, no heaven for me.) In 1968, as a 15th birthday present, I was given a ticket to see The Bee Gees at the Royal Albert Hall. Back then, there were the twins, Barry and two other musicians who were not family members.
By the time they had their "second coming" with the soundtrack to Saturday Night Fever, I was no longer listening to pop music, though I can still appreciate it was good of its kind. But my teens were enhanced by their early music. In 1967, Robin was a passenger on a train involved in what became known as the Hither Green Rail Crash. Forty-nine people died. Gibb was covered in oil but uninjured.
Scary for me and my friends - but not as much for Robin - a bunch of us were out and about that night and decided to follow the dozens of emergency vehicles to see what was going on. We were close to the site when the police diverted us, but had already realised the problem was on the railway line. Later, when I found out how serious it was, I felt a strong link to the tragedy, and this extended to my feelings about the star who was aboard. Thank goodness he survived and was able to continue to give to the world he inhabited, both with his talent, and with his time and largesse, campaigning for injured servicemen and women, and for a memorial to Bomber Command from WWII. Sadly, he will miss the opening of the memorial next month, but hs will be remembered along with those it honours.


Anonymous said...

It's quite alarming to realise my first memory of the Bee Gees was their appearance on 'Top of the Pops' in 1967

Eliza said...

My memories don't go back quite as far..I think I developed a bit of a crush on Robin in the 80's when 'You Win Again' came out..he wore a beret and overcoat in the video and something appealed to me :-)

I heard about his death on the radio last night..incredibly sad..he was the same age as mum and that beings it a little closer too

JoJo said...

I am really sad about Robin's passing. That leaves only Barry, of the 4 total brothers. :(

I was first aware of them in 1975 with 'Jive Talkin' and 'Nights on Broadway'. Then when my cousins moved to the Cape in 77, the 3 of us listened to the "Bee Gees Gold" album over and over that fall. Then of course Sat. Night Fever....

He will be missed.

judith said...

Yes so many singers and actors from my youth have's scary..

vikeau said...

RIP Robin

bobbybegood1 said...

Bee Gees - definately one of my all time fave groups. Real sad. I'm sure Barry is beside himself. Thanks for post.

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