Wednesday, 10 March 2010

Hitkrant, March 1979: Anni-Frid is not jealous

Frida interviewed by Dutch magazine Hitkrant during ABBA’s stay in Leysin, Switzerland in February 1979.
Mrs. Andersson, who was still called Miss Lyngstad until recently, is tired. Indeed, a trip from Stockholm to the Swiss winter sports resort Leysin is certainly not a walk in the park. And on top of that, you have to appear in front of the BBC television cameras immediately after your arrival, and right after that an exhausting press conference. Oh well, that’s life when your name is Anni-Frid and you are a singer in the group ABBA...

“Oh my!” Frida sighs when I’m sitting opposite her in the hotel room. “This has been a terrible day. Everything went wrong.” But still, she is willing to give an interview. After all, ABBA and Hitkrant are old friends.
“That’s true,” she says. “Back then in The Hague, we’ve launched the first issue of your magazine and through your readers, we’ve acquired a lot of new fans.” There, the conversation has taken off.

Yes, the fans: you are having millions of them. How do you cope with that?
“You probably know that our Swedish fan club, that is located in the same building as our record company, is very active. We have a lot of interaction and they are doing everything they can to keep our fans informed all over the world. But privately, I get a lot of fan mail as well and I answer all the letters that I like personally.”
Do you have time for that?
“Oh well, I’m managing. Apart from that, I think that our fans simply have the right to get an answer, so I make time for it!”

Shortly before our meeting, during the press conference, somebody had asked why Anni-Frid and Benny didn’t get married until recently. Her response was: “Because we never had the time for it,” but I’m not falling for that.
“Oh no, that was just a simple way to give an answer. The fact is: after about ten years of living together, we felt that our relationship had become so good that we decided to get married.”
Does it make any difference, marriage or living together?
“Oh no,” Frida smiles. “I think that we got married to... ehm... consolidate our relationship. Is that the right word? I think it is.”

I almost forgot: I’ve brought a Hitkrant badge for the ABBA members.
“How nice,” Frida exclaims and pins it on. “May I give the others to Benny, Björn and Agnetha or do you want to do that yourself?”
No, that’s fine. And this brings me to the next question. What do you think about the fact that Agnetha is always the one who gets the most attention?
Frida smiles cordially: “Well, I’m not jealous! Look, Agnetha simply is the symbol of Sweden: blonde, young and beautiful.”
The only thing you are not out of those three is blonde. This remark is met with an enchanting smile.

Music. It’s impossible to ignore this subject while talking to an ABBA member. “This business is my life,” Frida says. “I can’t imagine myself ever doing anything else.”
Who are your favourites when it comes to music?
“The BeeGees and Earth, Wind & Fire,” Frida says decisively. “And lately, I’m listening a lot to “Jazz”, the latest album by Queen. I am a Queen fan. Recently, I’ve seen them perform live in Stockholm and, although I prefer their records to their live performances, I still thought it was a memorable experience!”

Our conversation lasts longer than anticipated; Frida keeps talking. About ABBA’s stage clothes that she designs herself most of the time. About the new album that is due to be released in the beginning of April. About ABBA’s world tour that will kick off after the summer. About bad music, that she never listens to, and about her Maserati, that is not allowed to be driven at a truly high speed in Sweden. But Mrs. Andersson is tired. I get up: “Tomorrow in front of the cameras again, bright and early?”
“Oh well,” Frida says. “That’s your fate when you’re singing in a group like ABBA...”


Chris from the USA said...

Thank you for all of the hard work you do with this blog. I really enjoy it! You are giving ABBA fans something very special by posting these articles!

Michel said...

Thanks Chris! It's good to hear that you are enjoying my efforts.

Anonymous said...

Ofcourse it must have been hard for Frida sometimes when most of the attention went to Agnetha. It's hard to admit. That's how it was. That's why some of the Frida fans become so frustrated when a book like Abba in America is published with many pics of Agnetha.