Australia’s largest collection of Bee Gees memorabilia comes home to Queensland

The immortality of the Bee Gees lives on at State Library of Queensland thanks to a generous donation to the Queensland Library Foundation (the Foundation).

Secured from a private collector in Melbourne, Victoria, the collection comprises more than 370 items and includes all three Bee Gees Australian releases, scrap books, merchandise and every Australian album cover of Barry Gibb’s 1963–67 songs (bar three records), as well as a hand taped song Barry wrote but never recorded from the same period.

This collection is regarded as Australia’s most comprehensive and significant collection of Bee Gees albums and memorabilia.

“State Library of Queensland (SLQ) is thrilled to have received these materials through the efforts of the Foundation,” State Librarian and CEO Sonia Cooper said.

“This collection will prove an invaluable resource for music historians, researchers and fans alike,” Mrs Cooper said.

“State Library’s music collection is one of our fastest growing reference sections and this acquisition will greatly enhance the library’s content of Queensland music which has influenced the local, national and international music scenes.”

Queensland is where it all started for the trio, with the Gibb brothers signing their first music contract on the kitchen table of their Redcliffe home and playing their first gig, in 1958, at the Redcliffe Speedway.

“The Bee Gees have a remarkable connection to Queensland, so it’s very exciting to receive these artefacts — reflective of an extraordinary Queensland story — to preserve for future generations and share with Queenslanders today,” Mrs Cooper said.

The Queensland Library Foundation will host a special free event on 1 September to celebrate the acquisition with presenter Loretta Ryan, SLQ Music Curator Laurel Dingle, and an open discussion with Brisbane radio announcer of the late 1950s and early 1960s, Bill Gates.

1 September 2016 is a noteworthy day for the Gibb family: it’s the anniversary of the day they arrived in Australia from the UK, the 50th anniversary of the release of the Spicks and Specks album and more significantly, Barry Gibb’s 70th birthday.

Stayin’ Alive: the Bee Gees collection presentation
Thursday 1 September, 6pm–7pm
SLQ Auditorium 2, level 2
Free, bookings required www.slq.qld.gov.au/whats-on
State Library of Queensland, Cultural Precinct, South Bank
For more information about this event, please contact foundation@slq.qld.gov.au.

Media enquiries:
Communications, State Library of Queensland
communications@slq.qld.gov.au | 07 3842 9847

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