Robin Gibb, one of the most identifiable voices in popular music for five decades and whose contribution to oft-covered pop standards in which he sang lead such as I Started a Joke, I've Gotta Get a Message to You and Holiday proved timeless, lost his fight for life Sunday. He was 62.
"The family of Robin Gibb, of the Bee Gees, announce with great sadness that Robin passed away today following his long battle with cancer and intestinal surgery," reads a statement from his family. "The family have asked that their privacy is respected at this very difficult time."
The musician and member of the Bee Gees -- with brothers Barry and Maurice -- died in London. He had lapsed into a coma in April as he battled pneumonia following a series of health complications.
Gibb emerged from the coma after nine days, astonishing his doctor, who was treating the musician for advanced colorectal cancer. Gibb was conscious and able to communicate.
Gibb, who, up until last year, had a home in South Miami, was diagnosed with colon cancer after surgery for a blocked bowel and twisted intestine in 2010, and the disease had spread to his liver.
Maurice Gibb, his twin and often songwriting partner on projects outside of the Bee Gees, died in January 2003, at age 53, at Mount Sinai Medical Center in Miami Beach after surgery for an intestinal blockage. The twins shared the hereditary intestinal condition.
Youngest brother Andy Gibb, who had a successful solo career in the late 1970s, died in 1988 at age 30 of a heart ailment after battling an addiction to cocaine.
After a series of treatments, including chemotherapy and two operations, Robin Gibb appeared to have recovered from the cancer, and had planned on attending the premiere of The Titanic Requiem, his first classical work, composed with his son RJ, to commemorate the centennial of Titanic's sinking. But he underwent further intestinal surgery in March, and couldn't attend the premiere, and it was reported that doctors believed a second tumor was present before he contracted pneumonia.
"My dad has had a hard recovery from cancer," RJ told the UK's Daily Mail last month. "When you get rid of the cancer, a lot of periphery problems can occur."
Robin Gibb, who was born, as were his brothers, on the Isle of Man, found hometown success as a vocal trio in Australia but enjoyed greater exposure when they moved to England in 1967 to launch the Bee Gees. The trio's music and their image became inescapable, however, after a move to Miami Beach in the mid-1970s and an updating of their sound to incorporate R&B and dance on songs like Jive Talkin', You Should Be Dancing and Stayin' Alive.
In 1967, Otis Redding's manager approached Barry and Robin Gibb to write a song for his client. Redding would die in a plane crash before he could record To Love Somebody. The Bee Gees released their Top 20 hit version of the song on Bee Gees' 1st later that year and it eventually became one of the most covered songs in pop music history.
Robin was the quieter one, not given to spontaneous sing-a-longs on strummed guitars as Barry and Maurice were wont to do behind the scenes. During a time of familial discord, Robin even struck out on his own in 1969, released the downbeat Robin's Reign album, and for 15 months the Bee Gees
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