New 3-CD, 63-track set, Saved By The Bell, released by Rhino on June 2nd, offers remastered 1970 album, Robin’s Reign, plus abandoned follow-up, Sing Slowly Sisters, and numerous demos, alternates and further sessions
Gibb, who died in 2012, left The Bee Gees after ’69’s troubled double album masterpiece, Odessa. His solo career was launched almost immediately and his first solo single, ‘Saved By The Bell’, was a smash hit around the world, reaching #2 in the UK. Its accompanying album, Robin’s Reign, fared less well, as did a pair of follow-up singles, and by late ’70 Robin had rejoined his brothers Barry and Maurice for The Bee Gees’ 2 Years On album.
However, a considerable amount of work on a mooted second solo Robin set had taken place, yielding around 20 songs in various stages of completion: from piano and vocal demos to full-blown orchestral masters. The recordings were set aside after Robin’s Reign‘s poor commercial performance and promptly forgotten about until the ’90s when bootleg CDs began circulating among fans as The Bee Gees’ stock rose in collectors’ circles. Comparisons to the likes of Scott Walker and Bill Fay abounded, and the recordings became almost mythical, despite their poor audio quality.
Now, for the first time, we’re able to hear these recordings – virtually everything Robin put to tape during that brief but fertile 12 months – in the best-available fidelity, overseen by protector of The Bee Gees’ flame, Andrew Sandoval, and boasting in-depth liner notes courtesy of Bob Stanley.
Robin Gibb performs ‘Saved By The Bell’ and ‘One Million Years’ on Spanish TV in 1970