The Bee Gees are one of the most successful musical acts of the 20th century. They were born on the Isle of Man to English parents, lived in Chorlton, Manchester, England and moved to Brisbane, Australia during their childhood years, where they began their musical careers. Their worldwide success came when they returned to England and signed with producer Robert Stigwood.
The multiple Grammy Award-winning group was successful for most of its forty years of recording music, but it had two distinct periods of exceptional success: as a harmonic "soft rock" act in the late 1960s and early 1970s, and as the foremost stars of the disco music era in the late 1970s.
No matter the style, the Bee Gees sang tight three-part harmonies that were instantly recognizable; as brothers, their voices blended perfectly, in the same way that The Everly Brothers ' did. Barry sang lead on many songs, and an R&B falsetto introduced in the disco years; Robin provided the clear vibrato lead that was a hallmark of their pre-disco music; Maurice sang high and low harmonies throughout their career. The three brothers co-wrote most of their hits, and they said that they felt like they became 'one person' when they were writing. The group's name was retired after Maurice died in January 2003.
It has been estimated that the Bee Gees' record sales total more than 220 million, easily making them one of the best-selling music artists of all-time. This record sales total does not include record sales for artists for whom they have written and with whom they have collaborated. The Bee Gees were inducted into The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1997. Their 1997 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame citation says "Only Elvis Presley, The Beatles, Michael Jackson, Garth Brooks and Paul McCartney have outsold the Bee Gees".