Friday, 24 September 2010

Pop Rocky, 1983: Agnetha’s musical ‘youth sins’!

There’s a turmoil surrounding ABBA sweetheart Agnetha! Everywhere, her album ‘Wrap Your Arms Around Me’ (including the hit single ‘The Heat Is On’) is celebrated as her first solo album. But Pop Rocky found out that this isn’t true at all! Since many years, Agnetha Fältskog has been running a flourishing business in her home country Sweden with Swedish language solo albums.
Already back in 1968, Agnetha’s first solo single was released: ‘Jag Var Så Kär’ (‘I Was So In Love’). The record reached number one in the Swedish charts. At the time, ABBA had only just been founded and they only performed under the name Agnetha, Björn, Benny, Anni-Frid. When ABBA won the Eurovision Song Contest in Brighton in 1974 with ‘Waterloo’ and launched an international career, that hasn’t met its equal yet, Agnetha had already released five solo albums on the Swedish market. All of them were very successful in her home country.
But later on, Agnetha still didn’t give up on her Swedish career. For instance, in 1980 ‘Nu Tändas Tusen Juleljus’ was released, an album with Swedish Christmas songs, sung by Agnetha and her daughter Linda.
However, anyone who hasn’t got any of the eight Swedish Agnetha albums in his record collection doesn’t miss out on much. Most of these recordings contain very little of the brilliancy and fire of the ABBA recordings.
In any case, none of the old Agnetha albums is able to compete with her current super album ‘Wrap Your Arms Around Me’! Is that the reason why ABBA’s German fans weren’t allowed to get acquainted with Agnetha’s eight ‘youth sins’?

These are Agnetha’s musical ‘youth sins’.
‘Agnetha Fältskog’ (released 1968). A lot of schlager and very little sound – her first hit single ‘Jag Var Så Kär’ is included as well. And the record cover speaks of a “natural talent, especially evident due to her self written compositions.”
‘Agnetha Fältskog Vol. 2’ (released 1969). A slightly better effort, but still very schlagerish. However, ABBA technician Michael Tretow is already managing the mixing console here. Good voice, all is well.
‘Som Jag Är’ (‘As I Am’, released 1971). Sweetheart Agnetha is competing with an orchestra. Her future husband Björn is involved as an arranger and ABBA manager Stig Anderson is trying his hands on some lyrics. Hideous.
‘Agnetha’ (released 1971). Now it’s gradually getting ABBA-like – fun arrangements and a couple of backing choirs. Björn is already collaborating on the lyrics industriously.
‘Agnetha Fältskog’s Bästa’ (‘The Best Of...’, released 1973). See the previous four albums.
‘Elva Kvinnor I Ett Hus’ (‘Eleven Women In One House’, released 1975). A Swedish language version of the ABBA hit ‘SOS’ – sung by Agnetha – is included. And all other ABBA members are collaborating as musicians. It can almost be considered as a Swedish language ABBA album.
‘Tio År Med Agnetha’ (‘Ten Years With Agnetha’, released 1979). A compilation album of Agnetha’s best ‘youth sins’! But Agnetha is simply better with ABBA.
‘Nu Tändas Tusen Juleljus’ (‘Now A Thousand Candles Are Being Lit’, released 1980). Christmas with Agnetha and her daughter Linda! Most of these Christmas songs are unknown in our country. Sounds like an ABBA album with Mickey Mouse voices.

1 comment:

Monica said...

Sounds like writer is not a fan of Agnetha. I actually enjoy all of her Swedish songs. Thanks for translating the article.