The Bee Gees Wrote This Celine Dion Hit in Under Four Minutes
Celine Dion and the Bee Gees made very different music, however, that didn’t stop the Bee Gees from writing one of Dion’s hits. In fact, they wrote it with her in mind in just a few minutes. Here’s what Dion thought about the track.
The Bee Gees wrote this Celine Dion hit in less than four minutes
Firstly, a little background. The Bee Gees’ website tells us that John Marchant, the music engineer for the group, began working with them in the 1980s. One of his favorite anecdotes involved the creation of “Immortality.” He stated that after a long writing session, nothing seemed to be working out for the brothers. Barry suggested they regroup the next morning – but he had one more idea he’d like to try first. Barry began to play the beginning of what was to become a new song.
Marchant stated, “Maurice listened, and played the first chord, and then three and a half minutes later, they wrote the song—in real time, in just one pass. I get goosebumps telling that story. It was unbelievable. Barry would change chords, and Maurice would be there immediately, like he knew where Barry was going. They locked in together in a way, both timing-wise and intonation-wise, that only someone who knows what the other person is thinking before they think it could do. So, the way you hear Celine Dion perform [“Immortality”] now is exactly how they did it [that night].”
For Marchant, how they created “Immortality” remains one of his treasured times in the studio with the Bee Gees. According to Grammy.com, the Bee Gees actually had Dion in mind in the process of writing the song. “Immortality” was included on Dion’s 1997 album, Let’s Talk About Love. Another interesting detail is the Bee Gees actually sing background on the track and appear in a later 1998 music video.
Celine Dion sings ‘Immortality’ at the Grammy’s
Yahoo! Entertainment reports that in 2017, Dion sang “Immortality” at a CBS concert entitled Stayin’ Alive: A Grammy Salute to the Music of the Bee Gees. It was considered a special moment as she remembered the Gibbs brothers, Robin, Maurice and Andy, who had his own own separate career from the group. Dion said, “Twenty years ago, they gave me the gift of this song… Tonight, I sing it with love for Barry, as well as for Robin, Maurice, and Andy.” According to USA Today, Dion also had her late husband, Rene Angelil in mind in her tribute. Said Dion, “This song means more and more to me each day.” Her performance was considered a highlight of the tribute show.
How did the public react to ‘Immortality?’
“Immortality” was a Top 5 hit in the U.K. However, the song did not hit the Billboard 100. However Grammy.com says its parent album, Let’s Talk About Love, peaked at the top of the Billboard 200. In addition to becoming a hit in Great Britain, “Immortality” come about in a unique way and clearly came to mean something special to the artists involved.