21 May 2012
Last updated at 09:19
Robin Gibb's musical career began when he formed the Bee Gees with his brothers Barry and Maurice in 1958, but it was not until 1967 that they had their first major hit with the single New York Mining Disaster 1941. The Bee Gees would go on to become one of the biggest-selling groups of all time.
Their second single - To Love Somebody, co-written by Robin - became a pop sensation, and since its release has been covered by hundreds of artists.
The Bee Gees split in 1969 after recording the lush double album Odessa. Unable to agree on which track should be released as a single, Robin walked out, leaving his brothers to continue as a duo. His own solo album came out in 1970, featuring the top 10 hit Saved By The Bell. Although the brothers made amends, the early 1970s were a lean time for the Bee Gees, who were searching for a new sound as interest in their ballads waned.
When the Bee Gees switched from pop to disco, they produced arguably their most well known tracks, including How Deep is Your Love, Stayin' Alive and Night Fever. In total, they notched up album sales of more than 200 million worldwide.
The Bee Gees' manager Robert Stigwood had produced movie versions of Tommy and Jesus Christ Superstar. In 1976, he asked the band to record four or five songs for the soundtrack of John Travolta's new movie, about Brooklyn's underground dance scene. At Robin's suggestion, he changed the film's name from Saturday Night to Saturday Night Fever - and spawned one of disco's biggest hits. The soundtrack album went on to sell more than 30 million copies worldwide.
By the 1990s, The Bee Gees had proved their staying power in the notoriously fickle music industry. They were rewarded with a place in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and a lifetime achievement award at the 1997 Brit Awards.
Gibb continued to pursue a solo career alongside the Bee Gees, but his music enjoyed more success in Europe than it did in the UK or US. He was better known for co-writing tracks for other artists, among them Barbra Streisand and Diana Ross.
Robin, Maurice and Barry were appointed CBE in the 2001 New Year Honours. Sadly, Maurice died from cardiac arrest during surgery before he could receive the honour, so his son Adam collected it on his behalf. Robin and Barry collected their medals at Buckingham Palace in 2004.
Robin and Barry Gibb rarely performed together after Maurice's death in 2003. Robin later said the loss of his twin was "something I haven't accepted still, he was a relatively young man and he just went all of a sudden". The Bee Gees reunited briefly for an appearance on Strictly Come Dancing in 2009, and Robin played occasional solo shows. His final work was Titanic Requiem, an opera he wrote with his son RJ Gibb.
Ill-health dogged Gibb for many years. In 2010, he cancelled a series of shows after suffering from severe stomach pains and he later had emergency surgery for a blocked intestine. It was the same condition that caused the death of his brother Maurice. In 2011, Gibb was diagnosed with cancer.
Gibb's family announced "with great sadness" that he had died on 21 May 2012 following a long battle with cancer, and after intestinal surgery. He was described as "one of the major figures in the history of British music".