E.S.P. (Bee Gees album)

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Studio album by Bee Gees
Released September 1987
Recorded January – March 1987
Studio Middle Ear, Miami Beach and Criteria Studios, Miami, Florida
Genre Pop rock, synthpop, adult contemporary
Length 48:25
Label Warner Bros.
Producer Arif Mardin, Barry Gibb, Robin Gibb, Maurice Gibb, Brian Tench
Bee Gees chronology
Staying Alive
(1983)Staying Alive1983
Singles from E.S.P.
  1. "You Win Again"
    Released: August 1987
  2. "E.S.P."
    Released: October 1987
  3. "Crazy for Your Love"
    Released: February 1988
Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
AllMusic 2/5 stars[1]
Los Angeles Times 3/4 stars[2]

E.S.P. is the seventeenth original album (fifteenth worldwide) by British group Bee Gees. Released in 1987, it was the band's first studio album in six years, and their first release under their new contract with Warner Bros. It marked the first time in twelve years the band had worked with producer Arif Mardin, and was their first album to be recorded digitally. The album sold well in Europe, reaching No. 5 in the UK, No. 2 in Norway and Austria, and No. 1 in Germany and Switzerland, though it barely made the top 100 in the US.

The album's first single, "You Win Again", reached No. 1 in the UK, Ireland, Switzerland, Germany, Austria and Norway.


With the Bee Gees now back in the Warner-Elektra-Atlantic conglomerate, producer Arif Mardin was once again available to work with them.

The Gibb brothers began writing and recording songs for E.S.P. around September 1986. They worked at Maurice's home studio, informally known as Panther House, rather than at Middle Ear. Maurice set everything up and Scott Glasel was effectively the assistant engineer. Scott's recollection years later is that Barry brought in the songs as demos, featuring just his voice and guitar, and that they recorded the fuller demos based on Barry's songs. Scott also recalls Barry and Robin many times arguing heatedly over trivial things and calling off the project, only to have Maurice call Scott a few days later to let him know they were starting again.[3]


Over the previous few years Barry and Robin had become accustomed to different recording styles. Barry preferred to write all the songs and recorded demos, and then go into the big studio with session players to record polished versions for release. Robin instead liked to use the recording sessions themselves to work out the songs. Maurice liked a hands-on approach and where he had a voice in production he either appears prominently on the finished tracks or worked out arrangements with a few session players during recording. The compromise recording method adopted for E.S.P. was for the brothers to start all the recordings themselves and then complete them with session players and a producer. If they started with an idea and a rhythm track, they built a song onto it as they recorded, something that would accommodate what all three preferred to do. The result of this process would then be a demo, with vocals by the three brothers and instrumentals by Maurice and Barry. The drumming was electronic sequencers programmed by Barry and Maurice and their engineer Scott Glasel. The Gibb instrumental tracks were done from October into 1987. The second stage appears to have been recording the main vocal tracks, and where this was done is unknown. The demo of "E.S.P." on the box set Tales from the Brothers Gibb is at this second stage. Lastly, session musicians replaced most of the instrumental parts and the brothers dubbed additional vocals. They also edited some of the tracks, inserted new sections, and sped up at least two of them.[3]

Track listing[edit]

All tracks written by Barry, Robin, and Maurice Gibb.

No. Title Lead vocals Length
1. "E.S.P." Barry and Robin 5:38
2. "You Win Again" Barry and Robin 4:02
3. "Live or Die (Hold Me Like a Child)" Barry 4:41
4. "Giving Up the Ghost" Robin and Maurice 4:26
5. "The Longest Night" Robin 5:46
6. "This Is Your Life" Barry 4:50
7. "Angela" Barry 4:57
8. "Overnight" Maurice 4:20
9. "Crazy for Your Love" Barry 4:40
10. "Backtafunk" Barry 4:22
11. "E.S.P. (Reprise)" Barry and Robin 0:34
The Warner Bros. Years bonus tracks
No. Title Length
12. "E.S.P" (demo version) 4:43
13. "Angela" (edit) 4:18
14. "E.S.P" (edit) 4:17
15. "You Win Again" (extended version) 5:14
16. "E.S.P" (extended version) 6:15


Bee Gees

  • Barry Gibb – acoustic guitar, arranger, drums, electric guitar, programming, vocals, producer, drum programming
  • Robin Gibb – arranger, vocals, keyboards, producer
  • Maurice Gibb – synthesizer, acoustic guitar, bass guitar, arranger, electric guitar, keyboards, programming, vocals, drum programming

Additional personnel



  1. ^ Erlewine, Stephen Thomas. E.S.P. at AllMusic. Retrieved 7 February 2012.
  2. ^ Grein, Paul (27 September 1987). "BEE GEES ARE BACK". articles.latimes.com. Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 16 February 2012. 
  3. ^ a b Gibb Songs : 1987
  4. ^ Kent, David. Australian Chart Book 1970–1992. Australian Chart Book. ISBN 0-646-11917-6. 
  5. ^ "austriancharts.at Bee Gees – E.S.P." (ASP). Hung Medien (in German). Retrieved 16 February 2012. 
  6. ^ Library and Archives Canada. Retrieved 16 February 2012
  7. ^ "dutchcharts.nl Bee Gees – E.S.P." (ASP). Hung Medien (in Dutch). MegaCharts. Retrieved 16 February 2012. 
  8. ^ Billboard – 26 December 1987. 5 April 1997. Retrieved 16 February 2012. 
  9. ^ a b "Hit Parade Italia – Gli album più venduti del 1987" (in Italian). hitparadeitalia.it. Retrieved 14 February 2012. 
  10. ^ Oricon Album Chart Book: Complete Edition 1970–2005. Roppongi, Tokyo: Oricon Entertainment. 2006. ISBN 4-87131-077-9. 
  11. ^ "charts.org.nz Bee Gees – E.S.P." (ASP). Hung Medien. Recording Industry Association of New Zealand. Retrieved 16 February 2012. 
  12. ^ "norwegiancharts.com Bee Gees – E.S.P." (ASP). Hung Medien. VG-lista. Retrieved 16 February 2012. 
  13. ^ Salaverri, Fernando (September 2005). Sólo éxitos: año a año, 1959–2002 (1st ed.). Spain: Fundación Autor-SGAE. ISBN 84-8048-639-2. 
  14. ^ "swedishcharts.com Bee Gees – E.S.P." (ASP). Retrieved 16 February 2012. 
  15. ^ "Bee Gees – E.S.P. – hitparade.ch" (ASP). Hung Medien (in German). Swiss Music Charts. Retrieved 16 February 2012. 
  16. ^ "Chart Stats – Bee Gees – E.S.P." (PHP). UK Albums Chart. Retrieved 16 February 2012. 
  17. ^ "allmusic ((( E.S.P. > Charts & Awards > Billboard Albums )))". allmusic.com. Retrieved 16 February 2012. 
  18. ^ "Album Search: Bee Gees – E.S.P." (in German). Media Control. Retrieved 16 February 2012. 
  19. ^ "Complete UK Year-End Album Charts". Archived from the original on 11 January 2012. Retrieved 7 August 2011. 
  20. ^ "Austriancharts.at – Jahreshitparade 1988". Hung Medien. Archived from the original on 12 October 2011. Retrieved 16 February 2012. 
  21. ^ "Hitparade.ch – Schweizer Jahreshitparade 1988". Hung Medien. Archived from the original on 7 August 2011. Retrieved 16 February 2012. 
  22. ^ "Gold-/Platin-Datenbank (Bee Gees; 'E.S.P.')" (in German). Bundesverband Musikindustrie. 
  23. ^ "Norwegian album certifications – Bee Gees – E.S.P." (in Norwegian). IFPI Norway. 
  24. ^ "Solo Exitos 1959–2002 Ano A Ano: Certificados 1979–1990". Solo Exitos 1959–2002 Ano A Ano. 
  25. ^ "The Official Swiss Charts and Music Community: Awards (Bee Gees; 'E.S.P.')". IFPI Switzerland. Hung Medien. 
  26. ^ "British album certifications – Bee Gees – E.S.P." British Phonographic Industry.  Enter E.S.P. in the search field and then press Enter.
Preceded by
Bad by Michael Jackson
Swiss Music Chart number-one album
18 October – 22 November 1987
Succeeded by
Dirty Dancing by Various artists
West German Media Control Chart number-one album
23 October – 17 December 1987
Succeeded by
Misteriosa Venezia by Rondò Veneziano