And their presentation of a citation from the Massachusetts House of Representatives
© Report By Mary Beth
I mailed a letter of condolence to Middle Ear Studio on the one year anniversary of Mo’s death. Two days later, I received a package from Miami containing autographed BeeGees’ photos!! I thought it was great the way they responded to their fans – I never thought I’d get a response. Later in the month, we planned a trip to Florida. I called Middle Ear and left John Merchant a voicemail requesting a tour. Once again, I never thought I’d get a response. He called me back and said “sure–just come between 11:00 a.m. and 1:00 p.m.”
Mary Beth in front of Middle Ear
On 2/17/04 when we arrived in Miami, we cell-phoned the studio to say we were on our way, and Liz Patterson told us John Merchant would be “out for a while” because his wife had delivered a baby that morning 6 weeks early. I explained that we set up a tour with him and we travelled all the way from Massachusetts. We also had a citation from the Massachusetts House of Representatives honoring the BeeGees’ first number one hit “Massachusetts” signed by our local Representative and the Speaker of the House. She spoke to Dick Ashby and he agreed to let us come over. She gave us a quick tour and told us no one from the family was there that day. Boy was she surprised when she rounded a corner and saw Steve Gibb sitting there with his wife (so were we!!!). I asked to present the citation to Steve and he graciously jumped up and said “sure”.
Robin with Marian van Engelen (left) and Yvonne Schuiveling
Liz took a photo of us and Steve put his arms around us and said “one more picture”. He was very sweet and gracious, and assured us that his Dad and Uncle Rob would indeed see the citation. His wife was also so nice. We had interrupted their lunch, and it didn’t seem to phase them at all. Then Liz took us to meet Dick Ashby, who also assured us that he would make sure “the brothers” knew of our visit and gift from Massachusetts. It was a very memorable experience for us. I couldn’t believe we were actually in the place where so much creative genius occurred. It was also so bittersweet, to be in the actual studio where they recorded all the hits, and to see Maurice’s piano there……it was very, very sad. Another room we visited was where the songs were written, and all his keyboards were in there waiting to be shipped to Mo and Yvonne’s new house as part of his estate….very sad indeed.