Tragedy (Bee Gees song)

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Single by Bee Gees
from the album Spirits Having Flown
ReleasedFebruary 1979
Format7" single, 45rpm
Songwriter(s)Barry, Robin & Maurice Gibb
Producer(s)Bee Gees, Albhy Galuten, Karl Richardson
Bee Gees singles chronology
"Too Much Heaven"
"Love You Inside Out"

"Tragedy" is a song released by the Bee Gees, written by Barry, Robin & Maurice Gibb, included on their 1979 album Spirits Having Flown. The single reached number one on the UK in February 1979 and repeated the feat the following month on the US Billboard Hot 100.


Barry, Robin and Maurice Gibb wrote this song and "Too Much Heaven" in an afternoon off from making the Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band movie, in which they were starring. In the same evening, they wrote "Shadow Dancing", which was performed by Andy Gibb (and reached number one in the US).[1]

Though not originally in Saturday Night Fever, it has subsequently been added to the musical score of the West End version of the movie-musical. The song knocked "I Will Survive" by Gloria Gaynor off the top spot in the US for two weeks before that song again returned to number one for an additional week. "Tragedy" was the second single out of the three released from the album to interrupt a song's stay at number one. In the US, it would become the fifth of six consecutive number-ones, tying the record with the Beatles for most consecutive number-ones in the US. This record was eventually surpassed in 1988 by American singer Whitney Houston, when her single "Where Do Broken Hearts Go" became her seventh consecutive number-one hit on the Billboard Hot 100.

In 1979, NBC aired The Bee Gees Special, which showed how the sound effect for the explosion was created. Barry cupped his hands over a microphone and made an exploding sound with his mouth. Several of these sounds were then mixed together creating one large boom heard on the record.

In other media[edit]

"Tragedy" is playable as downloadable content for Rock Band 3 and Rock Band 4.

Charts and certifications[edit]

Chart performance[edit]

Weekly charts[edit]