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The 50th Anniversary!
on November 4, 2009
For having so many greatest hits packages, the first question is why another? 2009 is the 50th Anniversary of the Bee Gees and the first time they announced that they would, after all, reunite as the Bee Gees. When Maurice Gibb passed away in 2003, it was declared the Bee Gees were over and Barry and Robin went their separate ways. This is a celebration.
The nicest surprise is that fans are now given an official video disc of 18 of the Bee Gees more popular songs. "Spicks & Specks" is the original grainy black and white version, but "New York Mining Disaster 1941" is a rare clip, interspersing montages of children and coal miners which is a more direct reference to the lyrics. "Tomorrow, Tomorrow" represents the year the Bee Gees temporarily lost Robin but is a great song from their TV special "Cucumber Castle" and a nice addition even if a bit fuzzy. "For Whom The Bell Tolls" is one of their under appreciated gems and this video is one of their best (I miss "When He's Gone" as a video). "Still Waters Run Deep" is a rare video in that it is the single version of the song with an electronic harpsichord (not the album version). However, the most professional video has to be "Alone" with its images over the years spliced into the song.
The sound is far superior to all previous releases (other than the videos), including Tales from the Brothers Gibb and The Bee Gees - Their Greatest Hits: The Record. It appears that `most' of the songs chosen were all in the Top Twenty either in the USA or the UK. This makes for a nice Anniversary Edition, even if you already own most of these songs. The box is (as most are nowadays) a cardboard foldout with a slipcase. But the insert has a nice write-up from Sir Tim Rice with some photos of the group as they progressed over the last fifty years. Its not extensive, but gives enough information to sum up the Bee Gees career (so far).