Bee Gees / One Night Only

One Night Only

One Night Only is a live album and DVD by the Bee Gees. It features the group’s concert at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas in 1997 and includes many of their greatest hits.

The CD is edited, with some songs omitted, though the DVD version of the concert is complete. The album was re-issued in 1999, and included a bonus CD with the missing songs.

The Bee Gees performed songs from every decade from the 1960s to the 1990s. They also sang a tribute song to their late brother Andy Gibb, “(Our Love) Don’t Throw It All Away”. During this song old footage of Andy is shown, including him singing the second verse of the song. The vocals from the original recording also play during that section. Celine Dion guest-starred on the Bee Gees-penned “Immortality“. Recorded vocals by Frankie Valli are featured during “Grease“, and are also taken from the original song.

The album’s title was originally meant to reflect the band’s plan that the Las Vegas concert would be their final live performance ever. Barry Gibb’s arthritis had worsened to the point where it seemed it would be impossible for him to continue playing, but he wanted to expand the tour and so they played several more shows.

The Analysis:

Intro-You Should Be Dancin’/Alone—-As the CD opens to the sound of the crowd, you can sense the palatable level of excitement in the crowd chatter. As the opening strains of You Should Be Dancin’ begins, the entire place looses control and it transfers to CD very well. This backing band and the synth programming from Maurice is perfect…like listening to all of your favorite releases compressed into one night! When Barry enters with his vocal, it is spot on perfect…still am sure how that guy can sing like that…the song quickly becomes Alone…which allows more incredible falsetto from Barry. This is polished and damn near perfect…when the Brothers harmonize…it is sugary sweet. And when Robin takes his place at the mic, it is odd as always but so damn addictive!

Massachusetts—-Rolling out one of the earliest chart classics from The Brothers career, this is greeted by an incredible crowd response. When the opening strains of this song are introduced and Robin delivers his vocal, it is something that is pure magic. Of course the highlight is when the Brothers all harmonize together and put you in a place that you had long ago forgotten. This is pure magic!!

To Love Somebody—-Another relatively early chart smash, this band that backs the singers is so perfectly polished…it is amazing. Barry still delivers a fantastic non-falsetto that is so damn pleasant and addictive. This is incredible…put together with the harmonies and the excellent band…this is spot on perfect.

Words—-with little or no in-between song banter, the band moves from smash to smash with little hesitation. Barry delivers a classic breathy vocal…the kind that makes all of the women crazy. This is perfect…quiet when it needs to be and coming alive in a huge way when it is appropriate…this is so spot on, you would be hard pressed to prove that this was really live…only the DVD proves it as a fact. This is perfect!

Closer Than Close—-Not really familiar with this song, even as it plays I wonder where it came from…come on guys, help me out. None the less, this is brilliant…delivering the more modern sounds of the Brothers release. This is obviously later in the bands career…this is polished and perfect pop music. The melody line is as addictive as hell and the vocal harmonies are perfect!!!

Islands In The Stream—-Written by the Brothers but made famous by Kenny Rogers & Dolly Parton, the Brothers deliver a version that convinces me that this could have been just as big a hit for them if they had chosen to release it. The band delivers a soundtrack for the song that does have Country leanings, but this is pure pop all the way. When the Brothers harmonize together, you are elevated high enough to sit on the moon. This is fabulous!

Our Love [Don’t Throw It All Away]—-I  have in my personal collection about 700 LP’s….and about 7000 CD’s. The first purchase I ever made was when I was 14 and bought the gate-fold LP of the Brothers Greatest Hits. This was a song that was on that release and has remained a favorite of mine for 30+ years. I have a personal investment with this band…LOL!!! This is beautiful and delivered with the same mastery here as the first time I heard it…it is only escalated by the inclusion of a dedication and verse by deceased Brother Andy Gibb…this still manages to rip my heart out. Brilliant!

Night Fever/More Than A Woman—-Revisiting some of the songs that made this band a household name, the Brothers rip through this like it was never away from their lips. This is spot on perfect. The crowd goes crazy for this suite of songs and it is delivered with incredible accuracy and mastery. Just Fab!!! The Brothers warmly embrace the music that helped to stall their career….there was obviously so much more to the band than this…but this remains a part of recording history.

Lonely Days—-Another classic track that never quite got the attention that I thought it deserved. This features some remarkable harmonies and reminds you that this band started back in the very heyday of pleasant pop in the mid 60’s. This is wonderfully retro but still sounds relevant…especially when Maurice begins to really pound on the piano. This is wonderful!

New York Mining Disaster—-I believe that this was the very first chart entry for the Brothers…released around 1966….this is one the very first Greatest Hits…which I have on vinyl and was released in 1970. This is classic if only for the remarkable throw back sounds and the wonderful harmonies….just fantastic!

I Can’t See Nobody/And The Sun Will Shine/Nights On Broadway—-Compressing all of these classic songs in a three-minute suite is a bit disappointing, but the band and the Brothers manage to do a fantastic job with this quick edit. When Robin begins the song with his odd warble, the crowd nearly swoons. The movement between songs is amazing and Robin is allowed the spotlight for the most part…this is a brilliant reworking and compression of some pretty great songs…impressive.

How Can You Mend A Broken Heart—-With a nice gentle intro, the crowd, upon recognition of the song goes literally crazy. When Barry enters with his vocal on the second verse and chorus, the crowd again erupts in a mad frenzy. This is spot on…the orchestration is incredible…giving the song a huge layered feel…and when Barry delivers his classic breathy spots, the crowd just screams. This is incredible!

Heartbreaker—-Released as a single by Dionne Warwick, this is another track that could have been wonderfully and successfully recorded by the Brothers themselves. This version is well on course…sounding like the bands own song from the very beginning. this is a classic example of bands sometimes giving away their best compositions.The Brothers harmonize so well on this short version of the song…wonderful!!!

Guilty—-Originally recorded with Barbra Streisand, Barry gives a spot on rendition of this song. Delivered in an acoustic manner with the full wonder of the Brothers harmonies on display, this is a fantastic reminder of the the talent and expertise of lead Brother Barry. A wonderful moment in time.

Immortality featuring Celine Dion—-Of course, the band erupts into madness with the entrance of Dion…more important to me was the song and the delivery. Well, you would not have been disappointed…this is a masterful delivery of classic Adult Contemporary fodder. When Barry and Celine combine vocals it really is magic. I love this…yes, I admit it. This has one of the most addictive hooks I have heard in a long time.

Tragedy—-Released right after the huge success of Saturday Night Fever, this song kept up the momentum for the Brothers…again setting them on the tops of the charts and delivering one of my favorite songs from them. This song has emotional vocals…an incredible chorus and huge sounds that make your hairs on you arms stand straight up. This is a classic track…one of my favorites and delivered masterfully on this recording.

I Started A Joke—-Delving again deeper in the past and allowing Robin to again take control of the microphone. There is something so odd about his vocal but it is so different that it is fascinating. This track has huge swirls of orchestration and vocal emotions…this brings a tear to my eye and a goosebump or two…I’m so gay!!! Just fantastic!!!

Grease—-With a nice piped in vocal from Frankie Valli, the Brothers remind us that there was life besides the Saturday Night Fever soundtrack…bet you guys forgot about this song…huh? Barry delivers such an accessible vocal…he sounds as comfortable singing like a chipmunk as he does in his natural voice. This is magnificent….a wonderful end to a magical ‘evening’.

****1/2 out of 5



Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: