Jimmy Had a Bomb and the Bomb Went Bang: Reconsider the Bee Gees

Diversions, a recurring feature on Aquarium Drunkard, catches up with our favorite artists as they wax on subjects other than recording and performing. This week: Roadside Graves' John Gleason takes on the often misunderstood world of the Bee Gees; a group whose larger catalog and career has long been overshadowed due to their role as pop-culture figurehead of the late seventies Disco movement. Gleason, in his own words, below.

“Townes van Zandt is the best songwriter in the whole world and I'll stand on Bob Dylan's coffee table in my cowboy boots and say that.” Steve Earle famously said that.

If I had my way I’d fashion something similar about the Bee Gees and the Beatles but I’m not as quotable as Steve and my intention is not to fill up the comments section with irate Beatles fans. Yet, there have been many parties (actually more like many a bar) in which I have proclaimed sincerely that the Bee Gees are better than the Beatles. In doing so I have begun many passionate and dynamic conversations/arguments with strangers, friends, and bartenders. The truth is that I firmly believe that music can be universally qualified as good or bad by critics and listeners by certain criteria but regardless of the specifics of how you are judging music or how many stars or numbers you deem appropriate all that truly matters is how the listener feels and responds to the music when no one is around. When the headphones are on and the judgements aren’t so severe, when the windows of the car are up, or when you are safe among friends what are you listening to? I would agree with anyone that the Beatles produced both influential and quality music, yet for some reason which I will poorly attempt to explain I instinctively prefer the Bee Gees.

Only the good shit. Aquarium Drunkard is powered by its patrons. Keep the servers humming and help us continue doing it by pledging your support.

To continue reading, become a member or log in.