You Win Again (Bee Gees song)

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"You Win Again"
UK 12-inch vinyl
Single by Bee Gees
from the album E.S.P.
Released7 September 1987 (1987-09-07)[1]
  • 4:01 (album version)
  • 3:54 (7-inch fade)
Bee Gees singles chronology
"Someone Belonging to Someone"
"You Win Again"
Alternative cover
Japanese 7-inch vinyl artwork
Music video
"You Win Again" on YouTube

"You Win Again" is a song written by Barry, Robin and Maurice Gibb and performed by the Bee Gees. The song was produced by the brothers, Arif Mardin and Brian Tench. It was released as the first single on 7 September 1987 by Warner Records, from their seventeenth studio album E.S.P. (1987). It was also their first single released from the record label. The song marked the start of the group's comeback, becoming a No. 1 hit in many European countries, including topping the UK Singles Chart—their first to do so in over eight years—and making them the first group to score a UK No. 1 hit in each of three decades: the 1960s, 1970s, and 1980s.[2]

As songwriters, the Gibb brothers received the 1987 British Academy's Ivor Novello award for Best Song Musically and Lyrically.[3] In 1988, the band received a Brit Award nomination for Best British Group.[citation needed] In a UK television special on ITV in December 2011, it was voted second (behind "How Deep Is Your Love") on The Nation's Favourite Bee Gees Song.[4]


Cash Box called it "a melodic soft-pop number guaranteed to see instant attention".[5]


Barry Gibb wrote the melody while his brother Maurice conceived the drum machine sounds in his garage. On "1000 UK #1 Hits" by Jon Kutner and Spencer Leigh, Robin Gibb said "We absolutely thought that 'You Win Again' was going to be a big hit. It took us a month to cut it and get the right mix."[2]

Maurice Gibb explained "You Win Again" in a May 2001 interview with Mojo:

"When we get together and write, it's not like three individuals ― it's like one person in the room. Usually, we have a book of titles and we just pick one. I loved 'You Win Again' as a title, but we had no idea how it might turn out as a song. It ended up as a big demo in my garage, and I recorded stomps and things. There was just one drum on there. The rest was just sounds. Then, everybody tried to talk us out of the stomps at the start. They didn't want it. 'Take it off. Too loud! Can we have them not on the intro, just when the music starts?' All this stuff, but as soon as you hear that 'jabba-doomba, jabba-doomba' on the radio, you know it's us. It's a signal. So, that's one little secret ― give people an automatic identification of who it is."[2]

Chart performance[edit]

"You Win Again" was a number one single in the UK, Ireland, Switzerland, Germany, Austria, Denmark and Norway, and reached the top ten in Italy, the Netherlands, Australia and Sweden. It also topped the Eurochart for four weeks.

"You Win Again" entered the UK Singles Chart at No. 87 in the chart week 19 September. Four weeks later, it reached number one, where it remained for four weeks, thus preventing George Michael's single "Faith" from reaching the top spot.[6][7] When the single reached number one in the UK in mid-October 1987, it marked the Bee Gees as the first group to score a UK number one hit in each of three decades: the 1960s, 1970s and 1980s.[2] It ranked four in the UK's year-end singles sales chart.

"You Win Again" was less successful in the US, peaking at No. 75 on Billboard's Hot 100, perhaps down to a lingering association between the Bee Gees and the disco backlash that emerged in 1979, when the group (disco icons at the time) were at the height of their fame.[citation needed] Their next charting single, the 1989 hit "One", returned them to the US top ten.[8] Hoping to capitalize on that success, the song was rereleased as the followup;[9] while it did receive renewed airplay on a number of US radio stations, it did not chart this time.


"You Win Again" was released commercially on vinyl and cassette. The CD single was not common in the late 1980s, though a 1-track CD single was produced as a promo-only copy given to radio stations and reviewers in the United States and a 1988 2-track mini CD single was commercially released in Japan. The song also appeared as a bonus track on the American version of One, replacing the song "Wing and a Prayer".

Releases and track listings[edit]

7-inch vinyl single
1."You Win Again"Barry, Robin & Maurice Gibb3:54
2."Backtafunk"Barry, Robin & Maurice Gibb4:22
12-inch vinyl single
1."You Win Again" (extended version)Barry, Robin & Maurice Gibb5:14
2."You Win Again" (fade)Barry, Robin & Maurice Gibb3:54
3."Backtafunk" (LP version)Barry, Robin & Maurice Gibb4:22
CD single – Japan
1."You Win Again" (7-inch fade version)Barry, Robin & Maurice Gibb3:59
2."E.S.P."Barry, Robin & Maurice Gibb4:22


Personnel are adapted from the album E.S.P.[10]


Certifications and sales[edit]

Certifications and sales for "You Win Again"
Region Certification Certified units/sales
France (SNEP)[45] Silver 250,000*
Germany (BVMI)[46] Platinum 500,000^
United Kingdom (BPI)[1] Gold 555,000[47]

* Sales figures based on certification alone.
^ Shipments figures based on certification alone.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "British single certifications – Bee Gees – You Win Again". British Phonographic Industry.
  2. ^ a b c d "You Win Again by Bee Gees". Songfacts. Retrieved 15 July 2014.
  3. ^ Lister, David (28 May 1994). "Pop ballads bite back in lyrical fashion: David Lister charts a sea change away from rap towards memorable melodies". The Independent. Archived from the original on 7 May 2022. Retrieved 15 July 2014.
  4. ^ "The Nation's Favourite Bee Gees Song". ITV. 9 December 2011.
  5. ^ "Single Releases" (PDF). Cash Box. 5 September 1987. p. 8. Retrieved 11 September 2022.
  6. ^ "Official Singles Chart Top 100: 13 September 1987 – 19 September 1987". Official Charts Company. Retrieved 6 June 2018.
  7. ^ "Official Singles Chart Top 100: 01 November 1987 – 07 November 1987". Official Charts Company. Retrieved 6 June 2018.
  8. ^ Brennan, Joseph. "Gibb Songs : 1987". Columbia University. Retrieved 15 July 2014.
  9. ^ "Radio and Records" (PDF). 13 October 1989. Archived (PDF) from the original on 17 October 2022. Retrieved 14 November 2022.
  10. ^ E.S.P. (liner notes). Bee Gees. Warner Bros. 1987. Retrieved 11 July 2017.{{cite AV media notes}}: CS1 maint: others in cite AV media (notes) (link)
  11. ^ Kent, David (1993). Australian Chart Book 1970–1992. St Ives, NSW: Australian Chart Book. ISBN 0-646-11917-6.
  12. ^ a b "National Top 100 Singles for 1987". Australian Music Report. No. 701. 28 December 1987. Retrieved 7 April 2023 – via Imgur.
  13. ^ "Bee Gees – You Win Again" (in German). Ö3 Austria Top 40. Retrieved 31 May 2013.
  14. ^ "Bee Gees – You Win Again" (in Dutch). Ultratop 50. Retrieved 31 May 2013.
  15. ^ "Top RPM Adult Contemporary: Issue 8480." RPM. Library and Archives Canada. Retrieved 31 May 2013.
  16. ^ Danish Charts Archive. 30 October 1987.
  17. ^ "UK, Eurochart, Billboard & Cashbox No.1 Hits". Archived from the original on 14 June 2006.
  18. ^ Pennanen, Timo (2006). Sisältää hitin – levyt ja esittäjät Suomen musiikkilistoilla vuodesta 1972 (in Finnish) (1st ed.). Helsinki: Tammi. ISBN 978-951-1-21053-5.
  19. ^ "Bee Gees – You Win Again" (in French). Les classement single. Retrieved 31 May 2013.
  20. ^ "Islenski Listinn". Vikan. 19 November 1987. p. 62.
  21. ^ "The Irish Charts – Search Results – You Win Again". Irish Singles Chart. Retrieved 31 May 2013.
  22. ^ "Classifiche". Musica e dischi (in Italian). Retrieved 27 May 2022. Set "Tipo" on "Singoli". Then, in the "Artista" field, search "Bee Gees".
  23. ^ "Nederlandse Top 40 – week 44, 1987" (in Dutch). Dutch Top 40. Retrieved 27 March 2020.
  24. ^ "Bee Gees – You Win Again" (in Dutch). Single Top 100. Retrieved 31 May 2013.
  25. ^ "Bee Gees – You Win Again". Top 40 Singles. Retrieved 31 May 2013.
  26. ^ "Bee Gees – You Win Again". VG-lista. Retrieved 31 May 2013.
  27. ^ "South African Rock Lists Website SA Charts 1969 – 1989 Acts (B)". Retrieved 31 May 2013.
  28. ^ Salaverri, Fernando. Sólo éxitos: año a año, 1959–2002. ISBN 84-8048-639-2.
  29. ^ "Bee Gees – You Win Again". Singles Top 100. Retrieved 31 May 2013.
  30. ^ "Bee Gees – You Win Again". Swiss Singles Chart. Retrieved 31 May 2013.
  31. ^ "Official Singles Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company. Retrieved 31 May 2013.
  32. ^ "Bee Gees Chart History (Hot 100)". Billboard.
  33. ^ "Bee Gees Chart History (Adult Contemporary)". Billboard.
  34. ^ "CASH BOX Top 100 Singles – Week ending OCTOBER 10, 1987". Cash Box. Archived from the original on 6 October 2012.
  35. ^ " – Bee Gees – You Win Again" (in German). GfK Entertainment charts. Retrieved 22 February 2019.
  36. ^ "Jahreshitparade 1987" (in German). Hung Medien. Retrieved 15 July 2014.
  37. ^ "Jaaroverzichten 1987" (in Dutch). Ultratop. Hung Medien. Retrieved 15 July 2014.
  38. ^ "European Charts of the Year 1987 > Singles" (PDF). Music & Media. Vol. 4, no. 51/52. 26 December 1987. p. 34. OCLC 29800226. Retrieved 11 April 2022 – via World Radio History.
  39. ^ "Top 100-Jaaroverzicht van 1987" (in Dutch). Dutch Top 40. Retrieved 15 July 2014.
  40. ^ "Jaaroverzichten – Single 1987" (in Dutch). Single Top 100. Hung Medien. Retrieved 15 July 2014.
  41. ^ "Schweizer Jahreshitparade 1987" (in German). Hung Medien. Retrieved 15 July 2014.
  42. ^ "Gallup Year End Charts 1987 > Singles" (PDF). Record Mirror. London. 23 January 1988. p. 36. Retrieved 11 April 2022.
  43. ^ "Jahrescharts – 1987". (in German). GfK Entertainment Charts. Archived from the original on 9 May 2015.
  44. ^ "Jahrescharts – 1988". (in German). GfK Entertainment Charts. Archived from the original on 9 May 2015.
  45. ^ "French single certifications – Bee Gess – You Win Again" (in French). InfoDisc. Select BEE GESS and click OK. 
  46. ^ "Gold-/Platin-Datenbank (Bee Gess; 'You Win Again')" (in German). Bundesverband Musikindustrie.
  47. ^ Copsey, Rob (23 April 2021). "The Official Top 40 best-selling songs of 1987". Official Charts Company. Retrieved 18 July 2021.