Years in 7 are synonymous of anniversaries. No, I’m not talking about the Beatles cult Sgt Pepper’s which is turning 50 soon and getting a much talked reissue. Today we will be speaking about one of the biggest pop bands of all-time that came to prominence 40 years ago in the middle of the disco bonanza, the Bee Gees.
A decade ago, Amy Winehouse was everywhere. Two decades back, the Spice Girls were dominating while Shania Twain and Celine Dion dropped gigantic albums. In 1987, Michael Jackson‘s Bad, U2‘s Joshua Tree, Guns N’ Roses‘ Appetite For Destruction and Dirty Dancing all came to the light. Year 1967 is obviously home for various classics along with the Beatles, like the Doors debut or the Bee Gees own first hit in April 1967. The year interesting us today is 1977 though. Famous for being the year of Elvis Presley passing, three of the biggest albums ever got released at that time – Meat Loaf‘s Bat Out of Hell, Rumours by Fleetwood Mac, the #1 CSPC album studied to date, and of course the out-of-this-world smash Saturday Night Fever.
Just like Bodyguard, this Soundtrack contains hits from various artists but is deeply regarded as the flagship of one specific artist, in this case the Gibbs brothers. While the band got well-known on another 7 year – 1967, thanks to the global #1 smash Massachusetts – it is this Soundtrack that secured their spot in the music industry hall of fame. If they struggled a few years, from Jive Talkin‘ in 1975 to their input on Barbra Streisand Guilty 1980 album, the Bee Gees sold an insane amount of records with ABBA being the only act coming close to their pace. From there, their popularity got various ups and downs with several revivals happening, until the last hype generated by Robin Gibb passing in May 2012.
With a career running for 45 years and such an irregular trajectory, it is difficult to accurately establish the group success at each period and overall. Are they on Nirvana league, or closer to the Beatles? Do they challenge solid acts a la Celine Dion, or not even close? Of course, as they are responsible for the biggest selling album ever up to 1983, Saturday Night Fever, this study ends up being absolutely mandatory to check the overall position of this record among the all-time album eras list. A strong question will be about it topping or not its label partner Grease Soundtrack, which amassed an impressive 51,9 million equivalent album sales.
As usual, I’ll be using the Commensurate Sales to Popularity Concept in order to relevantly gauge their results. The concept will not only bring you sales information of all Bee Gees albums, physical singles, download singles, music videos and streaming, it will also accurately weight all this information to conclude on meaningful popularity indicators. If you are not yet familiar with the CSPC idea, the next page explains it with a short video, I fully recommend you to check it before getting into sales figures. Of course, if you are a regular visitor feel free to jump to the following pages. Let’s go!