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jueves, 27 de octubre de 2016

Abba announce new 'virtual and live experience' for 2018

. jueves, 27 de octubre de 2016
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Thanks to Nina Rios


Abba announce new 'virtual and live experience' for 2018
Swedish superstars keep details sparse of project with producer Simon Fuller, but say ‘time machine’ will use the latest virtual reality technology
Abba … the way they were



Abba … the way they were, at the 1974 Eurovision song contest. Photograph: Olle Lindeborg/AFP/Getty Images
Michael Hann
@michaelahann
Wednesday 26 October 2016 14.00 BST Last modified on Wednesday 26 October 2016 15.26 BST

It still seems unlikely a full public Abba reunion will ever happen, but the Swedish quartet are pushing themselves back towards the spotlight. Four months after they performed together for the first time in more than 30 years – at a private gala event in Stockholm in June – they have announced that they will launch a “virtual and live experience” next year.


Why Abba’s Dancing Queen is the best pop song ever
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The project, in partnership with Spice Girls svengali Simon Fuller and Universal Music Group, is being billed as “a groundbreaking venture that will utilise the very latest in digital and virtual-reality technology … which will enable a new generation of fans to see, hear, and feel Abba in a way previously unimagined”.

Abba’s Benny Andersson said: “We’re inspired by the limitless possibilities of what the future holds and are loving being a part of creating something new and dramatic here. A time machine that captures the essence of who we were. And are.”

Abba on tour in Canada, 1979.
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Abba on tour in Canada, 1979. Photograph: Andre Csillag/Rex Features
Singer Frida Lyngstad added: “Our fans around the world are always asking us to reform and so I hope this new Abba creation will excite them as much as it excites me!”

What, exactly, the project entails remains unclear. Further details are to be announced in 2017, with the launch taking place in 2018.


Abba on drugs, Eminem and why writing great pop is a job for young people
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Since their last official performance in December 1982, Abba have proved adept at managing their legacy – and maximising their revenues. The stage musical Mamma Mia! has grossed more than $2bn worldwide since opening in London in 1999. The 2008 film adaptation became the highest-grossing musical ever, with a worldwide take of nearly £500m. The 1992 compilation Abba Gold, meanwhile, has sold nearly 30m copies worldwide.

Speaking to the Guardian in 2014, Lyngstad left open the possibility that Abba might one day record again. “It’s difficult to talk about this because then all the news stories will be: ‘Abba is going to record another song!’” she said. “But as long as we can sing and play, then why not? I would love to, but it’s up to Björn and Benny.”

https://www.theguardian.com/music/2016/oct/26/abba-announce-virtual-live-experience-2018-simon-fuller

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miércoles, 26 de octubre de 2016

Soundtrack of my life: Benny Andersson

. miércoles, 26 de octubre de 2016
0 comentarios

Soundtrack of my life: Benny Andersson
The Abba star tells Craig McLean about six records with a very special meaning for him ...
Benny Andersson at the Covent Garden Hotel
Benny Andersson, photographed at the Covent Garden Hotel. Photograph: Suki Dhanda
Craig McLean
Sunday 17 May 2009 00.01 BST Last modified on Tuesday 25 September 2012 16.57 BST

The first record I bought ...

Elvis Presley, Jailhouse Rock (1957)

In Sweden we did not have commercial radio at the time. But there was this pirate station in the Baltic, Radio Nord. I'm not sure if I heard it there, but people were certainly talking about this guy. And I realised there was something out there that I hadn't heard before. Especially the flipside, Treat Me Nice, because that starts with a piano thing - I'd started piano a year before.

My introduction to melody ...

Mantovani, Film Encores (1957)

For some strange reason when I was 12, 13, I bought this. There was a lot of wonderful music on it: Laura, Limelight, Three Coins in the Fountain. You know what Mantovani is like: strings and tons of reverb. So very not rock'n'roll. I learned all these songs and that brought me into melody-making. The essence of good music to me has always been good melodies.

Memories of my first flat ...

Rattviks Spelmanslag, Gardeby Laten (1950)

I was 18 and got a place in Stockholm. In the morning I would get my little portable gramophone and play this. All the villages up north have their own spelmanslag , groups of fiddlers, and Rattviks was one of those towns. I played Gardeby Laten every morning in my new flat to come into a good mood. I was always tuned into fiddle music, the core of Swedish folk.

How all music is linked ...
Le Mystere des Voix Bulgares, Sableyalo Mi Agontze (1986)

I was sitting in the car maybe 20 years ago and this song came on the radio. What is this? It's like sheep! It's really raw stuff, women singing songs they've known since their grandmothers grew up. Folk music from Bulgaria is not exactly the same tone language as Swedish folk but there's something in it that makes you tick. All folk musics are more or less connected.

Proof that pop isn't dead ...

Alanis Morissette, Jagged Little Pill (1995)

I listened to this a lot when it came out, at a time when I wasn't writing pop songs any more. It was a remembrance of solid golden pop, from a fantastically talented woman with great writing and a great voice, and a very nicely produced album by Glen Ballard. It's one of the top 10 albums in my life when it comes to pop records, alongside Rumours and Hotel California .

The spirit of Swedish pop ...

Robyn, Robyn (2005)

Robyn is a great artist. She was 16 when she started and was straightaway a big star in Sweden. She's a hip kid, in the middle of whatever is going on, without being a chameleon like Madonna. She still has her own style all the time. We played at the opening of my hotel, the Rival, in Stockholm - I played piano and she sang, on her song O Baby. She has her act together.

Footnotes
Andersson began playing accordion with his father and grandfather when he was six.

His group the Hep Stars were one of Sweden's biggest bands in the 60s.

The man who wrote the music behind Mamma Mia! is not a fan of records from musicals.

Andersson has a stable of racehorses in Arundel, Sussex.

Story of a Heart, the first UK album from the Benny Andersson Band, is released on 6 July.











https://www.theguardian.com/music/2009/may/17/abba-benny-andersson





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'Virtual' ABBA Coming Soon Through Partnership with Simon Fuller and Universal Music
10/26/2016 by Fred Bronson
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Anders Hanser © Premium Rockshot
ABBA

Promising the next step in virtual reality, the members of the Swedish quartet ABBA have teamed up with entertainment entrepreneur Simon Fuller and the Universal Music Group to launch a digital experience that will allow a new generation of fans to see, hear and feel ABBA in a way described by Fuller as “previously unimagined.”

Fuller, the creator of American Idol and manager to acts like the Spice Girls and Annie Lennox, has been quietly investing in virtual reality technologies, developing hyper-realistic digital humans in the field of entertainment. “I was imagining who would be my very first choice to work with on an extraordinary new virtual reality experience to capture the world’s imagination,” the XIX Entertainment founder and CEO tells Billboard. “In a second, I thought it simply has to be ABBA. I approached them directly and thankfully they all fell in love with the idea and now that idea is fast becoming a reality.”

The Swedish group is personally involved in the creative process. “The creativity and ideas flowing from the members of ABBA over the past few months have filled me with great excitement,” Fuller said. “We are exploring a new technological world, with virtual reality and artificial intelligence at the forefront, that will allow us to create new forms of entertainment and content we couldn’t have previously imagined.”

ABBA performs their song Waterloo during the Eurovision Song Contest in Brighton on Feb. 9, 1974.
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ABBA Songs Remixed: Listen to 5 of the Best
Speaking for the group, Benny Andersson added, “We’re inspired by the limitless possibilities of what the future holds and are loving being a part of creating something new and dramatic here -- a time machine that captures the essence of who we were. And are.”

ABBA parlayed their win at the Eurovision Song Contest in 1974 with “Waterloo” into international success, breaking out beyond the borders of Sweden. A long string of pop hits, including “Dancing Queen,” “Knowing Me, Knowing You” and “The Winner Takes It All” continued until 1982. Then Andersson and ABBA co-founder Björn Ulvaeus turned their attention to a stage musical, Chess, written with Tim Rice. ABBA never recorded or toured together again.

A revival began in 1992, with the U.K. duo Erasure recording a four-song EP of ABBA songs, Abba-esque, and the release of ABBA Gold, a greatest hits compilation that has sold over 30 million copies worldwide. U.S. sales have reached 5.7 million, according to Nielsen Music, and in the U.K. the album is 17-times platinum, making it the second-best selling album in British history, runner-up only to Queen’s Greatest Hits.

It is now almost 35 years since ABBA performed live together, and interest in the group has never waned, helped along by stage productions of the musical Mamma Mia!, which opened in London’s West End on April 6, 1999 and is still playing. The New York run lasted from 2001 to 2015 and is the eighth longest-running show in Broadway history. The movie adaptation of Mamma Mia!, starring Meryl Streep, opened in 2008 and was an international box office success. It is the highest-grossing movie musical in U.K. history.

ABBA photographed in 1970.
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ABBA Reunites, Performs in Stockholm for 50th Anniversary Party
As a group, ABBA has resisted calls to reunite. They have famously turned down a billion-dollar offer to perform live. An appearance of all four members in June at a party celebrating the 50th anniversary of Andersson and Ulvaeus’ first meeting generated headlines everywhere. “Our fans around the world are always asking us to reform and so I hope this new ABBA creation will excite them as much as it excites me,” said Frida Lyngstad.

The ABBA catalog has turned into crown jewels for the Universal Music Group. “Having the privilege of working closely with the band for over two decades, I can comfortably say there are few recording artists who like ABBA bring together their mastery of craft, a high level of professionalism and enormous commercial success,” said Lucian Grainge, chairman and CEO of UMG. “I’m thrilled to be involved in this innovative new project that will introduce the band who are responsible for some of the greatest songs and melodies in pop music to a new generation of fans.”


http://www.billboard.com/articles/news/7556837/virtual-abba-simon-fuller-universal

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Abba consienten volver, pero en realidad virtual
Por Sebas E. Alonso | 26 oct 16, 16:35
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abbaHace casi 35 años desde que Abba se separaron. Desde entonces, se han negado a hacer giras de reunión incluso por mil millones de dólares, aunque muy de vez en cuando se les ha podido ver juntos en algún que otro acto. Sin embargo, hay una fórmula que sí ha logrado reunirlos: volverán como protagonistas del nuevo experimento de realidad virtual que han ideado Simon Fuller (American Idol, Spice Girls, manager de Annie Lennox) y Universal. Según informa Billboard, este nuevo proyecto les presentará de manera “jamás imaginada”. Eso lo damos por seguro.

Al parecer Fuller quería probar con algún artista de primera categoría los avances de las nuevas tecnologías en cuanto a “desarrollo de humanos digitales hiperrealistas en el campo del entretenimiento”, enseguida pensó en Abba y ellos han aceptado. Hay, de hecho, unas declaraciones del mismísimo Benny Andersson: “Nos inspiran las posibilidades ilimitadas de lo que trae el futuro y nos encanta ser parte de la creación de algo nuevo y dramático, una máquina del tiempo que capture la esencia de lo que fuimos. Y somos”.


También hay unas declaraciones de Frida Lyngstad: “Nuestros fans de todo el mundo siempre nos están pidiendo que nos reunamos así que espero que esta nueva creación de Abba les emocione tanto como me emociona a mí”.

De momento no hay fecha para el momento en que vea la luz este experimento.

http://jenesaispop.com/2016/10/26/279030/abba-consienten-volver-pero-en-realidad-virtual/

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martes, 25 de octubre de 2016

¿Quién diseñó la ropa de Abba?

. martes, 25 de octubre de 2016
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¿Quién diseñó la ropa de Abba? Cuando empezó todo? Caroline Fagerlind, director adjunto del Museo ABBA contesta alguna preguntas... sobre: el rol de Owe Sandström. " un buen traje de escena fortalecerá la personalidad de los artistas". El interés de Frida en el vestuario, desde Brighton... Y también aborda el tema de los impuestos con relación al vestuario ya que de acuerdo con la ley en Suecia, se obtiene una deducción de impuestos sobre la ropa de trabajo, si esta no puede ser utilizada para ningún otro fin. Al respecto dice Fagerlind... "Muchos artistas en Suecia durante los años 60 y 70 recibieron una deducción de impuestos por sus trajes que eran ropa de trabajo, pero el interés por la ropa fue una fuerza motriz, no una ventaja económica"



“Honestamente, creo que durante aquellos años teníamos pinta de locos. No creo que nadie vistiera tan mal sobre un escenario como nosotros”. Esta es una de las confesiones que hace Björn Ulvaeus, uno de los cuatro miembros de la banda, en el libro Abba: The Official Photobook”

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Abba logró desgravar impuestos gracias a sus excéntricos estilismos
"En mi opinión, parecíamos unos tarados, nadie salía al escenario tan mal vestidos como nosotros".

Figuras de cera de los cantantes de ABBA con su vestuario. | Corbis

LIBERTAD DIGITAL 2014-02-17
Hace cuatro décadas un grupo sueco formado por dos mujeres y dos hombres revolucionó el panorama musical de la época. Vestidos con trajes de raso de colores brillantes, botas con plataformas plateadas y chaquetas de lentejuelas las canciones Abba se hicieron famosas en todo el mundo, así como sus atuendos para subir a los escenarios.

Lo que hasta ahora no sabíamos era que aquella forma de vestir perseguía un único objetivo: pagar menos impuestos.

Este curioso detalle lo ha revelado uno de los componentes del cuarteto musical, Björn Ulvaeus. El cantante de Abba ha publicado The Official Photobook, un libro en el que cuenta, entre otras cosas, cómo lograron ahorrarse los trajes de sus espectáculos.

Existe una ley sueca que permitía, y todavía lo sigue haciendo, deducir los gastos de vestuario de los impuestos, siempre y cuando, los trajes sean fantasiosos o tengan otros atributos que los distingan completamente de la ropa que uno se pondría a diario.

Björn comenta en su libro: "En mi opinión, parecíamos unos tarados, nadie salía al escenario tan mal vestidos como nosotros". Pero esta era la única manera de cumplir con el fisco sueco.

Librarse de pagar los trajes no evitó que Ulvaeus fuera acusado de no declarar ingresos por diez millones de euros entre 1999 y 2005. El cantante apeló contra la multa que le puso la hacienda sueca y ganó. "Siempre he hecho lo correcto cuanto a mis impuestos ", dijo después de la victoria en los tribunales.
http://www.libertaddigital.com/chic/entretenimiento/2014-02-17/abba-logro-evadir-impuestos-gracias-a-sus-excentricos-estilismos-1276510950/


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Abba: “Nadie pudo haber vestido nunca tan mal como nosotros”
Detrás de los excéntricos estilismos del grupo en los 70 había una razón: ahorrar impuestos
La ley sueca desgrava la ropa de los artistas, siempre que nadie se atreva a llevarla en la calle

BARBARA CELIS

Londres 17 FEB 2014 - 12:47 ART

Internet está lleno de páginas web en las que se anuncian “trajes y accesorios estilo Abba”. Hay pelucas, botas, minifaldas arriesgadas, trajes discotequeros, conjuntos de blanco inmaculado, camisetas absolutamente kitsch, horteradas cargadas de lentejuelas, mucho spandex, telas de raso… La oferta es interminable. Y, a juzgar por la cantidad, debe de existir una gran demanda. Pero cuando hace cuatro décadas el grupo sueco formado por dos parejas apareció sobre los escenarios de su país vistiendo aquellos trajes imposibles, las audiencias en Suecia sufrieron un fuerte shock, seguido del que se sintió en el resto del mundo poco después de que Abba diera el salto internacional tras ganar Eurovisión en 1974 con la canción Waterloo.


Lo que hasta ahora no sabíamos es que aquel estilo, que después se popularizó y hoy incluso se reivindica, no tenía una mente pensante detrás como la que sí se escondía tras la ropa punk de la banda The Sex Pistols, concebida por la diseñadora Vivianne Westwood y el manager Malcom McClaren. Lo que se escondía en el armario de Abba era más bien una calculadora. El objetivo de aquella ropa no era marcar tendencia sino ahorrar: el fisco sueco permite desgravar la ropa de trabajo y la única forma que Abba tenía de desgravarse los trajes con los que salían al escenario era adquiriendo prendas que nadie se hubiera atrevido a ponerse para salir a la calle. “Tienen que ser trajes fantasiosos, para el escenario, ropa con el logo de su empleador u otros atributos que los distingan completamente de la ropa del día a día”, dice la ley sueca.

“Honestamente, creo que durante aquellos años teníamos pinta de locos. No creo que nadie vistiera tan mal sobre un escenario como nosotros”. Esta es una de las confesiones que hace Björn Ulvaeus, uno de los cuatro miembros de la banda, en el libro Abba: The Official Photobook, que se edita el mes próximo en Reino Unido. Se trata de una recopilación con más de 600 imágenes oficiales de un grupo que ha vendido más de 400 millones de discos en todo el mundo y que a pesar de haberse disuelto en 1982, en la última década ha vivido un fuerte revival que ha precipitado la reedición de sus discos y ha propiciado un musical, Mamma Mia, que se ha convertido en uno de los más taquilleros de la historia tanto en Broadway como en el West End londinense.

En el libro se incluyen también más de 100 fotografías inéditas de una banda que figura entre las diez que más discos han vendido de la historia, superando en algunos países incluso a los Beatles. Las fotos están acompañadas de comentarios y recuerdos de Agnetha Fältskog, Björn Ulvaeus, Benny Andersson y Anni-Frid Lyngstand, los cuatro integrantes de un grupo célebre por temas como Super-Trouper, Dancing Queen, Ring Ring, Fernando o Mamma Mia.


Si pagar poco a hacienda fue una de sus obsesiones durante los años de éxito de Abba, el fisco también fue una de sus pesadillas años después. Ulvaeus, considerado el líder del grupo, fue acusado de no declarar ingresos por diez millones de euros entre 1999 y 2005 pero apeló contra la multa que le puso la hacienda sueca y ganó. “Estoy muy feliz de haber recibido por escrito la confirmación de que siempre he hecho lo correcto en relación a mis impuestos”, declaró, tras su victoria, en 2007.

http://elpais.com/elpais/2014/02/17/gente/1392652036_051254.html

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La verdad sobre los míticos atuendos de Abba: Querían evadir impuestos
Björn Ulvaeus confesó sus razones en el libro "Abba: The Official Photobook". "Parecíamos estúpidos, nadie salía al escenario tan mal vestidos como nosotros".

Es imposible pensar en Abba sin acordarse de sus estrafalarias prendas de vestir. Spandex, túnicas, lycra, kimonos, brillos, plataformas y siluetas extremas fueron parte de lo que encantó y sorprendió a toda una generación que creció con temas como "Super Trouper" y "Dancing Queen".
Sin embargo, la verdadera razón por la que el grupo sueco usaba esas prendas no obedecía a la moda o creatividad. "El objetivo no era marcar tendencia sino ahorrar: el fisco sueco permite desgravar la ropa de trabajo y la única forma que Abba tenía de desgravarse los trajes con los que salían al escenario era adquiriendo prendas que nadie se hubiera atrevido a ponerse para salir a la calle", cuenta El País de España.

De acuerdo a la ley sueca, es posible deducir los gastos de vestuario de los impuestos siempre y cuando se utilicen "trajes fantasiosos para el escenario" o "si tienen el logo de su empleador" u "otros atributos que los distingan completamente de la ropa del día a día".

Y eso fue exactamente lo que hizo la banda que ha vendido más de 400 millones de discos en el mundo.

La revelación la hizo el cantante y guitarrista, Björn Ulvaeus, en el libro "Abba: The Official Photobook", que se editará el próximo mes en Inglaterra. "En mi opinión, parecíamos estúpidos, nadie salía al escenario tan mal vestidos como nosotros", comentó sobre lo que usó junto a Benny Andersson, Anni-Frid Lyngstad y Agnetha Fältskog.

El libro contiene unas 600 imágenes. Cien de ellas son inéditas.

No obstante, esta no es la primera vez que Ulvaeus se ve envuelto en un escándalo tributario. En 2007, el artista fue acusado de no declarar cerca de diez millones de euros en impuestos entre 1999 y 2005.

El cantante apeló y ganó el juicio contra el estado sueco. "Siempre he hecho lo correcto cuanto a mis impuestos", dijo.

La banda que se separó en 1982, sigue reportando buenos dividendos. "Mamma Mia!", el musical de Broadway que incluye sus hits ocupa el número 10 en la lista de espectáculos de mayor permanencia en cartelera.

http://www.lasegunda.com/Noticias/CulturaEspectaculos/2014/02/915225/la-verdad-sobre-los-miticos-atuendos-de-abba-querian-evadir-impuestos



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Abba admite que su ropa 'hortera' era para pagar menos a Hacienda

ELECONOMISTA.ES17/02/2014 - 16:1718 Comentarios


Escucha las canciones de Eurovisión

Pantalones campana, plataformas imposibles y brillos por doquier son solo algunas de las características de la ropa que vestía la mítica banda sueca Abba. Según ha revelado un miembro del grupo, la ropa se diseñaba para pagar menos al Fisco sueco.

Björn Ulvaeus asegura en el nuevo libro de la banda, Abba: el libro de fotografías oficial, que la ropa era tan llamativa porque así podían deducírsela de los impuestos que tenían que pagar. La Hacienda sueca permite desgravarse aquellos vestuarios que sean tan 'indignantes' que no sea posible llevarlos por la calle.

"En mi honesta opinión parecíamos imbéciles en aquellos años, nadie iba tan mal vestido en el escenario como nosotros", ha asegurado el afamado compositor de grandes 'hits' como Chiquitita, Fernando o Dancing Queen.

En este libro que celebra el 40 aniversario de la victoria de los suecos en Eurovisión con su conocida canción Waterloo, se hace un repaso en fotografías a la evolución de un grupo que estuvo presente en el panorama musical europeo desde finales de los 70 hasta principios de los 80.

Los nórdicos abordaban en su sencillo Money, Money, Money el tema de la riqueza, pero no hablaban de los más de 300 millones de libras en beneficios que han generado a lo largo de los años.

Se estima que la banda ha vendido unos 370 millones de discos, cifras que solo igualan otros grandes de la música como Madonna, Michael Jackson o Queen. Mención aparte merecen The Beatles o Elvis Presley que son los artistas que más han vendido en la historia de la música con ventas que ronda los 1.000 millones de discos, según datos de Time.

Problemas con el Fisco
En 2007, Ulvaeus fue acusado de no haber pagado al Fisco sueco 85 millones de coronas (unos 9,6 millones de euros) entre 1999 y 2005. El compositor apeló y finalmente fue absuelto, de hecho aseguraba al conocerse la sentencia que "estoy muy contento de haber sido informado por escrito que siempre he hecho bien las cosas que tienen que ver con los impuestos".

Aunque ahora, años más tarde, ha reconocido que el "estilo ABBA" no se debe a su intención rupturista, sino a intentar pagar menos impuestos.

http://www.eleconomista.es/economia/noticias/5548574/02/14/Abba-admite-que-su-ropa-hortera-era-para-pagar-menos-a-hacienda.html


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COSTUME DRAMA: ABBA's style owed something to Sweden's tax laws, which allowed deductions for clothing only if it could not be used for daily wear. Many Swedish bands made a practice of looking as flamboyant as possible. ABBA took this to a new level
He said: ‘Nobody can have been as badly dressed on stage as we were. In my honest opinion we looked like nuts in those years.
But we figured people would remember us even if we finished ninth.’
Colleague Benny Andersson added: ‘I’ve never regretted any picture . . . just grin and bear it.’
Ulvaeus poured cold water on rumours of a possible Abba reunion, saying: ‘If any one of us has opened the door a crack, I’m shutting it now.’
Save 35 per cent on Abba: The Official Photo Book: Page 54
As far as most of the world is concerned, the ABBA phenemenon began 40 years ago, with a Eurovision triumph in Brighton.
Armed with a song called Waterloo and outrageous costumes, two young couples put Swedish pop music on the map.
But for Björn Ulvaeus and Benny Andersson, the group’s male half, the story began eight years earlier, with a chance meeting on a Swedish country road.
Now, serialised exclusively for the first time in Event, a remarkable new book celebrates their astonishing career.
Two years in the making, the authors trawled through a quarter of a million photographs and interviewed the band members to produce the definitive, 400-page record of their story.


http://www.dailymail.co.uk/home/event/article-2558702/Abba-admit-wore-ridiculous-outfits-avoid-tax-40-years-Waterloo-band-reveals-story-success-words-unseen-pictures.html



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ABBA The Official Photo Book Review
Score
Summary: ABBA The Official Photo Book is a beautifully presented tome with some truly amazing and emotional photos of the one of the world's greatest groups of the 20th century.

5
Captivating!

ABBA The Official Photo Book
Contributors: Jan Gradvall (Author), Petter Karlsson (Journalist), Bengst Wanselius (Picture Editor and photographer), Jeppe Wikström (Publisher)
Publisher: Hardie Grant
Format: Hardcover
Dimensions: 30 x 29.8 x 3.4 cm
Pages: 400
Publisher: Bokforlaget Max Strom
Language: English
Reviewer: James Wright

This beautiful book is not just for the fans of Swedish pop sensation ABBA but also to those music historians as this band played an important part of the 20th century, especially with their musical influence. ABBA was made up of Björn, Benny, Frida and Agnetha and in 1974, the world focused their attention on them when they won the Eurovision Song Contest in Brighton with their hit song Waterloo. From there, they have sold nearly 400 million records and have left an everlasting legacy in modern music.

abbatheofficialphotobook03
©Wolfgang ”Bubi” Heilemann. 1974
Dress rehearsal for “Waterloo” in Brighton with ABBA’s vital rhythm section: bassist Rutger Gunnarsson and drummer Ola Brunkert.ABBA sang “Waterloo” in the Euro Vision Song Contest telecast beamed from Brighton on 6 April 1974. Earlier that day Benny had seen a favourable omen: the fire extinguishers in their hotel were all brand-named Waterloo. ABBA saw the Dutch duo Mouth & MacNeal and their “I See A Star” as the greatest threat. The starting line-up included Australian Olivia Newton-John, singing for the UK with “Long Live Love”. But ABBA and their song and costumes wiped the floor with all of them.Bjorn: We figured that with our clothes, people were going to remember us even if we finished ninth.
Agnetha: I Spent hours in make-up, pasting my face with tiny small stars.

ABBA: The Official Photo Book published
by Hardie Grant RRP $75. Available in stores nationally.

This book not only captures their rise to fame but also showcases over 600 images of the band from all facets of life with 100 photos never previously published. It is here where the book shines because it gives the reader a unique insight into all the members of ABBA from before they became pop stars, their private lives and of course, the music group itself. It’s quite a fascinating journey that also includes recent photos of the band plus a very emotional forward written by Björn, Benny, Frida and Agnetha.

The forward briefly touches upon this amazing pop group and how these photos brought back many memories of the band, including some of the more staged pictures used on covers. Best of all Björn, Benny, Frida and Agnetha have officially blessed this book, especially in regards to sharing many of these personal photos. Sure, the band had their ups and downs but at the end, it was their passion and youthfulness that captured the world.

abbatheofficialphotobook01
29 © Wolfgang ”Bubi” Heilemann. 1974
Publicity shots in Vallentuna for the leading West German pop magazine, Bravo.

ABBA: The Official Photo Book published
by Hardie Grant RRP $75. Available in stores nationally.

The book itself is split into ten sections that include key moments of the band such as Before ABBA, Waterloo and of course, After ABBA. The book even contains a great timeline that carefully highlights key moments in their history such as the 9th of January 1979 where ABBA performed Chiquitita for the first time to the 11th of December of 1982 when the band perform their final show on British TV.

Although the book contains over 600 photos, there is a considerable amount of dialogue to accompany the photos and the journey of ABBA from the struggles they faced as a band and their personal lives to their landmark visit to Australia in 1976 that took the country by storm. What I truly loved about the book were the personal photos that showed how much these couples were truly in love, including their sparkle in their eyes of an unwritten future that is beautifully captured by these images.

Another highlight are the images before and after ABBA that really humanises this amazing band and more importantly their emotions that are forever captured as stills. One such photo shows Bjorn inscribing his love into a tree somewhere in Sweden for his wife Agnetha that has become somewhat of a search for the Holy ABBA grail… it’s never been found to my knowledge but the search continues. Of course, you can’t go past the classic costumes and jumpsuits of the 70’s to the beards and long hair that made ABBA what they are today.

abbatheofficialphotobook02
11 ©Charles Sutton. 1975

Ice-cream break during a promo tour. At Gill’s Old Fashioned Ice Cream, Farmers Market, Los Angeles, November 1975. In the middle, Bjorn’s sister Eva, and on his arm, daughter Linda.

Los Angeles was the city they were most eager to see and where their favourite musicians lived and worked Agnetha, Bjorn and Benny adored the Beach Boys. The Eagles, dominating LA radio in 1975, were also on their list. Frida dug soul and funk, and especially Stevie Wonder.

ABBA: The Official Photo Book published
by Hardie Grant RRP $75. Available in stores nationally.

Final Thoughts?

ABBA The Official Photo Book is a beautifully presented tome with some truly amazing and emotional photos of the one of the world’s greatest groups of the 20th century. It is a must have book to any fan and gives people a unique and moving insight into their lives, both behind and in-front of the camera.

Highly Recommended!
http://www.impulsegamer.com/abba-official-photo-book-review/

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Abba admit they only wore those ridiculous outfits to avoid tax! Forty years after Waterloo, the band reveals story of their success in their own words and unseen pictures


They recorded songs unlike anything before – Dancing Queen, SOS, The Name Of The Game, Knowing Me, Knowing You – selling more than 380 million records worldwide

Their music has stood the test of time, even if their fashions haven’t.
Now Swedish supergroup Abba have revealed they had good reason to wear such garish stage costumes – because it saved a little money, money, money on their tax bill.
The band, whose spangly flares, catsuits and platform heels were considered naff even in the 1970s, exploited a Swedish law which meant clothes were tax deductible if their owners could prove they were not used for daily wear.
The band reveal their wardrobe secrets in Abba: The Official Photo Book, published to mark 40 years since they won Eurovision with Waterloo and featuring scores of intimate, never-before-seen pictures.
Scroll down for video

COSTUME DRAMA: ABBA's style owed something to Sweden's tax laws, which allowed deductions for clothing only if it could not be used for daily wear. Many Swedish bands made a practice of looking as flamboyant as possible. ABBA took this to a new level
He said: ‘Nobody can have been as badly dressed on stage as we were. In my honest opinion we looked like nuts in those years. 
But we figured people would remember us even if we finished ninth.’
Colleague Benny Andersson added: ‘I’ve never regretted any  picture . . . just grin and bear it.’
Ulvaeus poured cold water on rumours of a possible Abba reunion, saying: ‘If any one of us has opened the door a crack, I’m shutting it now.’ 
Save 35 per cent on Abba:  The Official Photo Book: Page 54
As far as most of the world is concerned, the ABBA phenemenon began 40 years ago, with a Eurovision triumph in Brighton. 
Armed with a song called Waterloo and outrageous costumes, two young couples put Swedish pop music on the map.
But for Björn Ulvaeus and Benny Andersson, the group’s male half, the story began eight years earlier, with a chance meeting on a Swedish country road.
Now, serialised exclusively for the first time in Event, a  remarkable new book celebrates their astonishing career. 
Two years in the making, the authors trawled through a quarter  of a million photographs and interviewed the band members to produce the definitive, 400-page record of their story.

Scroll down for the amazing pictures...


EARLY DAYS: Child prodigies and a life-changing gig together

ANNI-FRID LYNGSTAD: ‘Frida’ was born in 1945 to a German soldier and Norwegian mum but grew up with her grandmother in Sweden. Many children of German fathers fled Norway to escape bullying in the years after the war. ‘
BJöRN ULVAEUS: The future musician begged his parents for an instrument, they bought him a guitar at 13 and he formed folk outfit the West Bay Singers. They won a talent contest and were discovered by future their future manager
AGNETHA FÄLTSKOG: The Fältskogs were a working-class family and had no piano, but a neighbour did. ‘One of the first things I did was write a song,’ says Agnetha. ‘Using one finger, I wrote Two Little Trolls. I was five years old.’
GORAN BROR ANDERSSON: ‘Benny’, born in Stockholm in 1946; his first musical memories are of the accordion, and he got his own at six. At 15, he was a touring musician. 1965 he had his first hit, No Response, which went to Top 10 

TAKE A CHANCE ON US: January, 1971, and the band that would become ABBA perform Benny and Björn’s recent hit, Hej Gamle Man, a song about a Salvation Army soldier, for the Sally Army, accompanied by fiancées Anni-Frid and Agnetha. ‘They were met with massive applause,’ said the organisers
That beginning? Two buses, one carrying Björn’s chart-topping group the Hootenanny Singers, the other Benny’s Hep Stars, encountered each other between gigs, and, from one bus, an invitation was yelled out.
‘So many coincidences form our lives,’ remembers Björn, 32 years after the band quietly embarked on an undeclared but apparently permanent retirement.
‘What were the odds I’d meet Benny on a country road in the Sixties? That I would meet Agnetha? 
‘And what were the odds that Benny would meet Frida a few months later and that she was also a terrific singer? 
'That one of the girls is a soprano and the other a mezzo-soprano, and that they would make magic when they sing together?’
They recorded songs unlike anything before – Dancing Queen, SOS, The Name Of The Game, Knowing Me, Knowing You, Fernando – selling more than 380 million records worldwide.
Then after ten incandescent years, from 1972 to 1982 – a career comparable to the equally brief yet bright flame of The Beatles – the couples split and the group fractured.
But the music of ABBA remains, fuelled in part by the staggering success of the Mamma Mia! musical and tour, and rumours continue to swirl of a final performance. The band are said to have been offered $1 billion to tour. 
‘The Stones have chosen to keep on playing and that’s OK,’ says Björn. 
‘But for us to suddenly make a comeback? Why? If any one of us has opened the door a crack, I’m shutting it now!’
However, last year, Agnetha, the group’s iconic, reclusive blonde, dropped hints of a concert to mark the April anniversary of the group’s Eurovision triumph. Nothing has been confirmed, but the group have reunited once again for the publication of this authorised photo book.
As the 40th anniversary approaches and the world awaits a reunion that may or may not take place, the four band members reveal the amazing stories behind these rare and unseen photos.

A FAMILY AFFAIR: Falling in love, babies and beating The Beatles


AGNETHA: While recovering from a doomed love affair, 16-year-old Agnetha wrote Jag Var Så Kär (I Was So In Love). The song knocked The Beatles off the top spot.

BJORN AND AGNETHA: 'I fell in love when I heard Agnetha's song on the radio. I was madly attracted to that voice.' The pair met in May 1968, when she was 18 and he was 23

BENNY AND FRIDA: The couple at home in Vallentuna, a northern suburb of Stockholm in January 1972. They chose the neighbourhood because it was within easy reach of the city, but cheaper and suitable for children, with meadows and forests close by. Agnetha and Björn moved into a home in Vallentuna that same month

BJORN: With parents Gunnar and Aina, at home in Västervik in 1972, the year Björn, Benny, Agnetha and Frida became ABBA. The year before, Benny and Björn had sold a few spare songs to a film producer for The Seduction Of Inga, a soft-porn film. Björn was offered a minor role in the movie, but fiancée Agnetha put her foot down

BENNY AND FRIDA: The two first met in 1969, in the Swedish finals of Eurovision: Benny co-wrote the song that came second, Hej Clown; Frida was fourth with Härlig Är Vår Jord. They recall hasty greetings backstage. ‘I thought he was totally sexy. He was exciting. But it took time for our love to grow’

BJORN: 'Looking back, it's weird that we went along with these pictures, but we were so tight with the media, almost cuddly. And no paparazzi.' Björn and Agnetha in their Brighton hotel the morning after winning the 1974 Eurovision Song Contest with Waterloo

BENNY: In 1973, ABBA agreed to promote baby food company Semper – and Björn and Agnetha’s baby daughter Linda made her modelling debut. Then, in 1976, the band’s manager, Stig Anderson, sold the use of Fernando to electronics giant National for $1 million. with the song given a new lyric: ‘There’s so much more to National. So much more than just the many, many things we make for you.’ Agnetha and an older Linda are pictured below. ‘That did it for me,’ says a disgusted Benny. ‘We’ve never sold another song again’

AGNETHA: ‘I’ve always had a thing for dogs. I used to have a Yorkshire terrier and had to leave it with my parents when I was 18 and moved to Stockholm. So we got Ada and she was so sweet!’ Agnetha, Björn and daughter Linda in their Vallentuna townhouse. They lived as normally as possible so Linda would have the same upbringing as other Swedish children

The big time: Sharks, drugs and that tinfoil photoshoot...


BJORN: ‘We figured with our clothes, people would remember us even if we finished ninth.’ It had been unthinkable that little Sweden could win Eurovision, but in 1974 at Brighton, ABBA triumphed with Waterloo – beating, among others, Olivia Newton-John, who sang for the UK. And earlier that day, Benny saw a good omen – the fire extinguishers in the hotel were branded ‘Waterloo’

FRIDA: 'I've always been really fond of dancing. When I was ten I wanted to be a ballet dancer.’ Agnetha and Frida taking dance lessons a year after their Eurovision triumph in Brighton

BJORN: ‘In my honest opinion, we looked like nuts in those years. Nobody can have been as badly dressed on stage as we were.’ But photographer Wolfgang ‘Bubi’ Heilemann can remember all of the ABBA members digging through piles of costumes before photoshoots

BJORN: ‘OK, we smoked a bit of hash now and then, but that was as close as we got to drugs. We were never offered the stuff. It’s why we’re here today, for sure.’ ABBA’s first visit to the US, September 1974 – and unlike many bands of the era, the visitors have a wholesome image

FRIDA: ‘I think it’s fun. Did we wear panties? Of course. Bras too, if I remember rightly. We just pulled down the straps so they wouldn’t be visible.’ Taken in Stockholm in 1975, the infamous tinfoil shot did its job, grabbing enormous attention when it was cabled around the world a few weeks later. ‘I’ve never regretted any picture... just grin and bear it,’ says Benny

THE VISITORS: On an Australian tour, ABBA anchored off a beach near the mouth of the Swan River outside Perth, in the company of friendly sea lions. ‘Is it dangerous to swim here?’ one of the Swedes asked. ‘Don’t worry,’ the captain soothed them. ‘Sharks won’t attack if there are sea lions around. Sea lions are fast. They’ll ram a shark from the side if it gets too close


THE NAME OF THE GAME: Sold-out show and sexy shoots


MONEY, MONEY, MONEY: When tickets were released for ABBA's two February 1977 shows at London’s Royal Albert Hall, the promoters were deluged with 3.5 million requests - the equivalent of 700 full houses

DANCING QUEENS: Film clips from ABBA shows include a remarkable number of zooms to the girls’ backsides or chests – such as this rear view of Frida. During the Seventies, Sweden was known as a country with a liberal attitude towards sexuality. A journalist said Agnetha Fältskog had ‘the world’s sexiest bum’

BJORN: ‘All these years later, I have almost no memory of the shows themselves. It’s a blur. I remember my jogging runs better – that was my way of getting my energy together. I used to try to get to the arena as late as possible, otherwise I’d just be pacing around, waiting to go on’

AGNETHA: ‘It felt like the fans were going to eat me up. I was still a normal kid from Jönköping, but now I couldn’t go anywhere.’ Agnetha was the least suited to dealing with the fans and photographers – she also badly missed her daughter. ‘When we were on tour, I longed for Linda. I had negotiated with our manager and the others that our tours would never last longer than two weeks, but this meant they had me down as cranky Agnetha. They thought I was demanding’


END OF AN ERA?: Will they, won't they make a comeback?


AGNETHA: ‘We were always asked whether Frida and I were rivals but we weren't. We helped and supported each other all the time, especially on tour. If one had a cold, the other could step forward and do more of the singing. We always had each other’s back’

AGNETHA: ‘A lot of people think I’m a recluse. But it’s just that I love my quiet life and have always enjoyed silence.’ After ABBA, Agnetha walked away from music for years, retiring to an island outside Stockholm. She has gone dancing incognito in Stockholm and has heard more than once that she looks ‘a lot like’ Agnetha Fältskog

BENNY: Their last TV appearance was on the UK’s Late, Late Breakfast Show, on December 11, 1982. They performed I Have A Dream and Under Attack, and were interviewed by Noel Edmonds. ‘Honestly, I just wanted a break for a couple of years,’ says Benny. ‘To try something new. The way I see it, ABBA is still on a break’

THE REUNION: Coffee in Benny's island studio, but will the four superstars reunite? Definitely not, says Björn. Maybe, says Benny


‘ABBA The Official Photo Book’ is published by Max Strom Publishing, £35. 

To order your copy at the special price of £22 with free p&p, please call The Event Bookstore on 0844 472 4157



Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/home/event/article-2558702/Abba-admit-wore-ridiculous-outfits-avoid-tax-40-years-Waterloo-band-reveals-story-success-words-unseen-pictures.html#ixzz4O7nMNMXb
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