Arrow Through the Heart: The Biography of Andy Gibb

BearManor. Jul. 2022. 260p. ISBN 9781629339207. pap. $27. MUSIC
Historian Hild (Georgia Tech and the Univ. of West Georgia; Arkansas’s Gilded Age) masterfully recreates Andy Gibb’s career and personal life through extensive research (there is a 13-page bibliography) and interviews with family, friends, and associates in this first-ever full biography. Andy Gibb (1958–88) was a star—a shooting star who became famous quickly but burned out just as fast. As the younger brother of Bee Gees members Barry, Robin, and Maurice, Andy always felt in their shadow and wanted to join their group. That never happened, but he went on to become a successful solo artist with hit recordings (“I Just Want To Be Your Everything”; “Shadow Dancing”), and amassed a huge fan base partially due to his boyish good looks. But despite success, he battled insecurity, depression, and drug addiction and never got over his break-up with actress Victoria Principal. He hosted TV’s Solid Gold and starred on Broadway in Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat but was fired from both due to cocaine-related absences. In 1985, he got clean at the Betty Ford Center but restarting his career proved nearly impossible. He died bankrupt in 1988 at 30.
VERDICT A sad but compelling cautionary tale that fans of Andy Gibb, the Bee Gees, and classic rock will want to read.
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