Bee Gees – Jive Talkin’

The rhythm of this song drew me in when I was younger. Jive Talkin’ has a strong R&B feel to it. This song started it all for the disco era Bee Gees. This was the first big disco hit for The Bee Gees. They became icons of the era, singing in falsetto harmonies over dance beats.

You couldn’t go anywhere without hearing them blare out of the radio at that time. This song peaked at #1 in the Billboard 100, #1 in Canada, 5 in the UK, and #4 in New Zealand in 1975.

The Bee Gees had an incredible 9 Number 1 hits, 15 Top Ten hits, and 43 songs in the Billboard 100. They have sold more than 220 million records worldwide, making them one of the world’s best-selling artists of all time

 

 

From Songfacts

This was called “Drive Talking” in its early stages, but producer Arif Mardin suggested the change to “jive” to play to teenage sensibilities. “Jive Talkin'” is a term for slang.

The rhythm was inspired by the chunka-chunka-chunka sound of a car rolling over a bridge crossing Biscayne Bay near Miami. Robin Gibb explained to The Mail On Sunday November 1, 2009: “We’d already thought up the title for this song, but it wasn’t until Barry, Maurice and I drove from Biscayne Bay to Miami that we realized what the tune was going to be. We had the idea as we passed over a bridge. Some tar noises made a rhythmic sound on the wheels of our car, which created the feel to the type of song we wanted to write. We finished the song at the Criteria studios that day.”

They had seven more #1 hits in the disco era, but the band went out of style at the same time as white leisure suits. The group, which had considerable success before the disco era, took a lot of heat in the press. This criticism would weigh on them in later years as they felt that accusations of selling out and creating popular schlock were out of line. They would often point out that disco became homogenized in the years after they got to it, and that their sound was really an extension of R&B.

This was a comeback song for the group. They were very successful as contemporary singers in the late ’60s and early ’70s, but the two albums they released before Main Course flopped, and it looked like their careers were over.

Knowing that a new Bee Gees single would be met with skepticism by radio programmers, their label sent promotional singles to stations with plain, white labels, giving no indication as to what the name of the song was, or who it was by. The plan worked: the song was added to playlists and revived the fortunes of the group.

Along with several other Bee Gees hits, this was featured on the soundtrack to Saturday Night Fever in 1977. Along with “You Should Be Dancing,” it was one of two previously released Bee Gees songs used – they wrote five more specifically for the film. The set became the best-selling soundtrack album of all time, until it was outsold by The Bodyguard soundtrack.

This was an R&B track that did very well in the black charts in America. The Bee Gees were one of the first white groups to explore that territory.

Former Fugees singer Pras sampled this on his song “Blue Angels.”

Jive Talking

It’s just your jive talkin’
You’re telling me lies, yeah
Jive talkin’
You wear a disguise
Jive talkin’
So misunderstood, yeah
Jive talkin’
You really no good

Oh, my child
You’ll never know
Just what you mean to me
Oh, my child
You got so much
You’re gonna take away my energy

With all your jive talkin’
You’re telling me lies, yeah
Good lovin’
Still gets in my eyes
Nobody believes what you say
It’s just your jive talkin’
That gets in the way

Oh my love
You’re so good
Treating me so cruel
There you go
With your fancy lies
Leavin’ me lookin’
Like a dumbstruck fool
With all your

Jive talkin’
You’re telling me lies, yeah
Jive talkin’
You wear a disguise
Jive talkin’
So misunderstood, yeah
Jive talkin’
You just ain’t no good

Love talkin’
Is all very fine, yeah
Jive talkin’
Just isn’t a crime
And if there’s somebody
You’ll love till you die
Then all that jive talkin’
Just gets in your eye

Jive talkin’
You’re telling me lies,yeah
Good lovin’
Still gets in my eyes
Nobody believes what you say
It’s just your jive talkin’
That gets in the way

Love talkin’
Is all very fine, yeah
Jive talkin’, just isn’t a crime
And if there’s somebody
You’ll love till you die
Then all that jive talkin’
Just gets in your eye, yeah yeah

Oh jive talkin’
Jive talkin’
Oh jive talkin’

Author: badfinger20 (Max)

Power Pop fan, Baseball fan, old movie and tv show fan... and a songwriter, bass and guitar player.

15 thoughts on “Bee Gees – Jive Talkin’”

  1. I remember buying that album backvwhen I was young…undoubtedly one of the first 10 LPs I bought. I liked most of it . As uncool as disco is considered, I think most of their stuff from the mid & late 70s holds up quite well…great voices, good melodies, generally ok lyrics for what it was…

    Liked by 1 person

  2. The Bee Gees; whom Australians have always called them their own since they got their big break living there, were revolutionary music artists. I am not normally turned on by Commercial big music, but the Bee Gees changed the course of music. I think commercially they were the most culturally influential band since the Beatles. Their 1998 concert ‘One Night Only’ I play often with my kids. It’s all just fantastic original music played by extremely competent artists with a fantastic harmony – all brothers no less. Music like that is once in a lifetime.

    Liked by 1 person

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