An article from Dutch TV-guide Tros Kompas, announcing the broadcast of The Story Of ABBA, a Dutch TV-special from 1982 that featured one of the last joint interviews with the ABBA-members.
The rumours about ABBA’s imminent break-up remain persistent. Stories that definitely have a certain validity. The divorces of the couples Andersson and Ulvaeus are one of the reasons for worries. Frida and Agnetha’s solo projects are another cause, that makes one doubt about the continued existence of the Swedish group.
Michael Peterson, employee at ABBA’s Dutch record company, has a different opinion: “ABBA will definitely stay together.” He also explains why: “Recently, I talked to ABBA in Germany. Frida Lyngstad told me during this conversation that she had more fun working with ABBA now than ever before. The members are now working together in a more relaxed manner than in the days when they were still closely involved with each other. The bigger amount of freedom surely benefits the achievements within the group.”
During that same conversation, Frida explained why she and Agnetha (separately) started a solo career: “Ever since the start of ABBA, Agnetha and I were used by Björn and Benny for their compositions. It wasn’t until later that we were involved in their ideas as singers. After ten years, that’s no longer satisfying. Agnetha and I wanted to broaden our musical territory. To do an album on your own not only benefits yourself, but the group as well. After all, you gain more experience.”
So, cheerful reports from the ABBA-camp. But not all is well. Constant Meijers, one of the producers of the TV-programme ‘The Story Of ABBA’ tells us about it: “For ‘The Story Of ABBA’, a small group travelled to Sweden, where we taped an interview with ABBA. In that interview Benny says he’s through with ABBA. There would be nothing left to achieve with the group. However, the other three don’t share Benny’s opinion.”
Still, Benny’s thoughts about ABBA’s future could be the reason that a new ABBA-album is long overdue. After all, Benny is the group’s composer and when he doesn’t write anything, the other ABBA-people can’t do anything else but wait. The last ABBA-album ‘The Visitors’ has been out in the shops for over a year now. Indeed, only recently the double album ‘The Singles’ was released, but there are only two new songs on there. A modest output, actually an emergency solution to shorten the long waiting time. In the meantime, there have been ten years of ABBA. With that feat, the Swedish foursome has nicely survived several other pop-groups, including the Beatles. Those ten years are the theme of ‘The Story Of ABBA’. Constant Meijers: “Apart from the interview with ABBA, we also made use of our trip to Sweden to go through the Swedish film-vaults for one day. There we discovered unique footage. For instance, a recording of the group The Hep Stars, of which Benny was a member for some time. Footage of Björn with his group The Hootenanny Singers surfaced as well. Furthermore, footage of Agnetha and Frida as singers before their ABBA-period.”
It can all be seen in ‘The Story Of ABBA’: a programme not to be missed!