First Hit #1: September 4, 1976
The Bee Gees were, arguably, the artist that fully captures the ’70s. They started out with a soft rock sound that owed a major debt to the decade before, and then transformed into a dance group that had some major disco hits. It’s like the musical arc of the decade overall. Then the ’80s came and nobody cared about the Bee Gees anymore, just as the ’70s itself was rejected. Truly, the Gibb brothers represent the spirit of the decade better than all others.
You Should be Dancing is easily the Spirit of ’76, a powerful disco number that tries to push the genre in different directions while many other contemporary hits are content to go through the motions. It has a big sound, the distinct falsetto vocals being the most traditional aspect of an ambitious track that tries to get people on the dance floor by going big and brassy. It is still a pop trifle, a dance song about dancing, but it takes the disco fever to a new, unexplored level, and it remains a classic of the genre.