Barry and Robin Gibb, who went to Buckingham Palace to be honored Thursday, said the Bee Gees died with their brother, Maurice.
During an emotional ceremony, Prince Charles made the brothers Commanders of the Order of the British Empire, or CBE. Maurice’s son, Adam, received the award on his father’s behalf.
“It’s bittersweet. It would have been wonderful for all three of us to be here,” Barry Gibb, 57, said afterward. “We have mixed feelings. Knowing Mo, this would have been right up his alley. He would have still had his hat on,” a reference to Maurice Gibb’s beloved black trilby.
Gibb said the Bee Gees are now a thing of the past. “We are not the Bee Gees now, in respect for Mo,” he said. “Maybe the time’s just right for a bit of free flight. Maybe at some point we will do something together.”
Adam Gibb, a 28-year-old film student, looked close to tears after collecting his father’s award.
“My mother was supposed to do it, but she wouldn’t have been able to” because of the emotion, he said. Maurice Gibb’s widow, Yvonne, watched from the audience.
Born on the Isle of Man, the Gibb brothers moved to Manchester in the 1950s. Their ’70s disco hits included “Stayin’ Alive” and “Night Fever.”
Maurice Gibb died last year at age 53. He suffered a heart attack before undergoing emergency surgery in Miami for an intestinal blockage.