Bee Gees principal Maurice Gibb died early this morning (Jan. 12) at a Miami Beach hospital, his family said. He was 53. Gibb, who joined with his older brother Barry and his twin Robin in one of the

Bee Gees principal Maurice Gibb died early this morning (Jan. 12) at a Miami Beach hospital, his family said. He was 53. Gibb, who joined with his older brother Barry and his twin Robin in one of the best selling musical groups of all time, suffered cardiac arrest before undergoing emergency surgery for a blocked intestine. He was admitted to Mount Sinai Medical Center Wednesday and underwent surgery Thursday.

"To our extended family friends and fans, with great sadness and sorrow we regretfully announce the passing of Maurice Gibb this morning," Gibb's family said in a statement. "His love, enthusiasm and energy for life remain an inspiration to all of us. We will all deeply miss him."

Gibb played bass and keyboards for the group, whose name is short for the Brothers Gibb. The Bee Gees have lived in South Florida since the late 1970s. Their younger brother, Andy, who had a successful solo career, died in 1988 at age 30 from a heart ailment.

Although its career has spanned more than 40 years, the Bee Gees are probably best known for their 1977 contributions to the "Saturday Night Fever" album, which is the best selling movie soundtrack ever with more than 40 million copies sold. The group had recently announced a hiatus after extensive promotional activity in support of its most recent Universal studio album, "This Is Where I Came In."

The family emigrated from England to Australia in 1958, and the brothers soon gained fame as a teen pop group. They returned to England in the 1960s, and their first four albums contained hits such as "1941 New York Mining Disaster," "To Love Somebody," and their first U.S. No. 1 hit, 1971's "How Can You Mend A Broken Heart."

The brothers wrote and produced songs for Barbra Streisand, Diana Ross, and Dionne Warwick in the 1980s. They also wrote the Kenny Rogers and Dolly Parton hit "Islands in the Stream."


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