Barry Gibb is honored today (3) with the issue of a special set of stamps by the Isle Of Man Post Office, celebrating the musical achievements and tireless charitable work of the great singer, songwriter, producer, Bee Gees co-founder and Manxman.
“I’m very proud of my Manx roots,” says Barry. “I was born and bred on the ancient, mystical, magical Isle Of Man, and I have very fond memories of growing up there, so to appear on a set of its stamps is not only a wonderful surprise, but also an honour and a privilege.”
Gibb, the last surviving member of globally-revered pop giants the Bee Gees, was born at the Jane Crookall maternity home in the Isle Of Man’s capital Douglas on September 1, 1946. He lived on the island until 1955 when the Gibb family moved, firstly to Manchester and then to Australia in 1958. With brothers Maurice and Robin, he returned to the UK in 1967 for the launch of the trio’s international career. He currently lives in Miami.
The new honor recognizes an incredible career that includes global album sales alone with the Bee Gees of some 200 million, as well as his 16 No.1 singles as a writer and 14 as a producer. He shares their BRIT Award for Outstanding Contribution to British Music as well as eight Grammys, the Grammy Legend Award and the 2015 Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award. The Bee Gees were awarded CBEs in 2004 and, in 2018, Barry was knighted by Prince Charles for his services to music and charity.
His latest, hugely successful album Greenfields: The Gibb Brothers’ Songbook Vol. 1, which topped the UK charts on release in January 2020, nods to his roots in its title. The opening lyrics on its song “Butterfly’ (“Green fields where we used to wander, purple valleys, near my home. We would play there, beneath the sky, then I kissed you Butterfly”) are a reference to the fields near where he grew up on the Isle of Man.
Gibb has been hugely generous in his support for causes close to his heart such as UNICEF, the Princes Trust, Nordoff Robbins, the Diabetes Research Institute, the National Association of Police Athletic/Activities League, and Whatever It Takes. He has requested that this stamp issue will support the work of music therapy charity Nordoff Robbins.
The seven new Barry Gibb Isle Of Man stamps feature him at various stages of his career, as follows:
Stamp 1: During the filming of the Bee Gees 1969 TV special Cucumber Castle (photograph by Mike Randolph/Paul Popper/Popperfoto via Getty Images);
Stamp 2: A portrait in the late 1970s at his home in Miami, Florida USA (photograph by Ed Caraeff);
Stamp 3: On the set of the film Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band, Los Angeles, October 1977 (photograph by Michael Putland/Getty Images);
Stamp 4: All For One Tour of Europe, 1989 (photograph by Denis O’Regan);
Stamp 5: In concert at The Ahoy in Rotterdam, 1989 (photographer unknown);
Stamp 6: Glastonbury Festival, England, June 25, 2017: Barry Gibb performs the “Legends” slot at Worthy Farm, Pilton (photograph by Samir Hussein, Redferns);
Stamp 7: Performing at his home studio, 2019 (photograph by Desiree Prieto).
Buy or stream Barry Gibb’s Greenfields: The Gibb Brothers’ Songbook Vol. 1.