Wednesday, 25 June 2008

Story, January 1982: The truth about the sadness of the ABBA-girls

Gossip-magazine Story published this article, after Agnetha and Frida had appeared on Dutch TV-show MIES for a short interview. The video for One Of Us was also premiered on that show.
Obviously, this 'interview' is made up: starting to record the album without any songs ready; Agnetha and Frida recording their vocals and shooting the One Of Us video, without Benny and Björn being present... lol! I suppose they also thought Benny and Björn were edited into this picture.

Did you see them on television the other day? ABBA’s Agnetha and Annifrid were looking rather lifeless. But what exactly was hidden behind those tired faces? And what do the two famous singers really want, deep in their hearts?

It all seemed so ideal. At the time, the story of ABBA really started out as a fairy tale. Four happy, young people won the Eurovision Song Contest in 1974 with their song ‘Waterloo’. Since then ABBA turned into the most successful group in the world. Everything the group did after that, became an enormous success. Although in their private lives things were starting to go downhill for the two married couples: Björn decided to divorce Agnetha. Later on, the same thing happened to Benny and Annifrid. Still this wasn’t a reason for the foursome to go their separate ways professionally as well. The four Swedes took up the courage to continue on the successful path, they have been following for ten years now. As it turns out, that’s not so easy. Especially the past few months have been difficult, according to Agnetha and Frida, who talked about the problems within ABBA, just before their holiday...

“I’m so glad that our new album ‘The Visitors’ is finally finished and in the shops all over the world,” sighs Agnetha, before she sits down next to her friend and colleague Annifrid. “Believe me, this time the recording of the album really was an uphill struggle. Normally, we would enter the studio with the pre-written material. This time, nothing had been written yet when we came to the studio. On top of that, Benny and Björn were never satisfied with the results. And if they weren’t, it would be our manager Stig Anderson. We kept on re-recording, until it drove us crazy... exhausting, really!”
Annifrid agrees completely with her: “It was really awful this time. Things became even more complicated because of Benny and Björn, who involve us to a lesser extent in the proceedings and therefore are starting to do more and more things separately from us. This time, they recorded all the music in advance. Later on, when they weren’t there, we had to come in to record the vocals. When they came back to the studio later and heard that things weren’t satisfactory, we were at home again. That’s how we kept running back and forth to the studio! In the past we always did everything together. That went much faster. It also took a lot of planning before the promotional film for our single ‘One Of Us’ was ready. That was a complete disaster as well! Like I said before, the boys Benny and Björn want as little to do with us as possible. Also, they have lots of other things on their mind at the moment. That’s why we taped the film first and the boys were edited in later on. I don’t think I want to continue like this, and I reckon Agnetha thinks the same.”
Annifrid looks questionally at the blonde singer beside her, who is nodding decisively. “I don’t feel like it any longer this way,” she says. “We are growing further apart. There’s not much left of the good atmosphere, that was always so wonderful. Annifrid and I are not happy with the situation at all. You can also sense it, listening to our new album, that isn’t exactly a happy record. It consists only of sad songs, that reflect exactly how we feel at the moment. Probably, Benny and Björn feel the same way, because in the end they have written the songs. Maybe things will get better in the future, when we all have had a long holiday. That’s what I hope wholeheartedly, otherwise ABBA can end tomorrow, as far as I’m concerned. I really mean that. That way, Annifrid and I will get the chance to do other things as well. And to spend more time with our children. Taking everything in consideration, our children are obviously more important than ABBA. No matter how much we enjoyed it in the past. Now I’m actually waiting for the moment that ABBA is definitely over. Because like I said, I don’t feel like continuing like this any longer...”


Ronaldo said...

Lol! As if Frida and Agnetha were talking to an old friend!
They were way too professional to be talking about their collegues like that.
And indeed: recording vocals without the boys present sounds just hilarious!
I actually remember this article.

Michel said...

Yes, they probably got hold of a few sad One Of Us pics and invented a story around them. Laughable, really. Well, at least it gave the women at the hairdresser something to gossip about, lol.
It was pretty unusual to have an ABBA poster in a gossip magazine. I don't think the average reader of Story would pin that poster on the wall.