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Music / Andy Gibb

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Hey, remember The Bee Gees? The disco band that had brought us "Stayin' Alive" and "How Deep Is Your Love" among many over hits?

They had a little brother, Andrew "Andy" Roy Gibb. Born on March 5, 1958, in Manchester, England, Andy grew up in Australia when his family moved there when he was six months old. At 13, he started his career by playing his guitar at clubs in the Spanish resort town of Ibiza, where his parents were living at the time. Shortly after this, he moved with his parents to his brothers' birthplace of the Isle of Man, where he formed the band Melody Fayre. A few months after that, he returned to Australia. His first single as a solo artist, "Words and Music", became a minor hit in Australia and New Zealand in late 1975/early 1976. Later in 1976, he married the former Kim Reeder, and they moved to the US, where he began his international music career.

Eventually signing onto RSO Records with Robert Stigwood, Andy got his big break with the single "I Just Want to Be Your Everything", which made it to #1 on the Billboard Hot 100. "(Love Is) Thicker Than Water" and "Shadow Dancing" also topped the Billboard charts, making him the first male solo artist ever with three consecutive US number-ones. The last of these was also Billboard's #1 song of 1978. "An Everlasting Love" and "Don't Throw It All Away" would soon follow in the success. However, his marriage proved less successful; he and Kim split up in 1977 just as his career was taking off, and she returned to Australia. The couple divorced in 1978, shortly after Kim gave birth to their daughter Peta.

By 1981, he would enter into a high-profile relationship with Dallas star Victoria Principal. He also started working on several projects outside of the recording studio, co-hosting the syndicated TV music show Solid Gold and performing in The Pirates of Penzance in Los Angeles and Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat on Broadway.

Sadly, his career would soon be scuttled by a growing cocaine addiction. Andy's former wife recalled in a 1988 interview for People magazine that he had "become ensconced in the drug scene" even during their marriage, and his drug problem only got worse. He would be fired from both Solid Gold and Joseph due to absenteeism caused by cocaine binges. His addiction also cost him his relationship with Principal. On a VH1 Behind the Music special on Gibb's life and career, Principal said that she gave him an ultimatum to choose between her and drugs, and as she said, "he chose drugs". He went through drug rehab twice, and after his second stint ended in spring 1987, he had apparently beaten his addiction and was ready for a comeback, recording four songs that he and his brothers had co-written. Plans were for him to release a full album in the near future, but that album never came.

Still battling depression over his breakup with Principal, he relapsed, this time into heavy drinking. His brothers tried to get him to stop, but with no success. Shortly after Andy celebrated his 30th birthday in March 1988, he checked into an Oxford hospital complaining of chest pains. On 10 March, he fell unconscious and died. Some media reports suggested he had overdosed, but this was proven false; his death was confirmed to be from myocarditis, an inflammation of the heart most often caused by a virus. The Gibb family, as well as a cardiologist who had previously treated Andy, believed his past cocaine addiction had weakened his heart and made him vulnerable to the disease that would end his life.

His Wikipedia page can be found here.

Andy Gibb's music provides examples of: