Friday, March 31, 2006

In 1975 ABBA had 3 number 1 hits in Australia.
Mamma Mia with an incredible 10 weeks at the top spot was the biggest hit and it was more than enough reason for ABBA to travel down under.
Between 4 and 14 March 1976 the band was in Australia to do lots of interviews, tv shows and a tv special.
Their new single Fernando was about to hit number 1 in the second week of that same March and would stay put for an impressive 14 weeks!
These pics of Frida and Agnetha were taken on March 13th on the tv show Bandstand where ABBA performed Mamma Mia.

Thursday, March 30, 2006

ABBA in their outrageous Waterloo costumes (not clearly seen here) and with big smiles!
1974 was a good year for ABBA: winning Melodifestivalen and Eurovision with Waterloo and having a hit with the single as well.
It was even a hit in the US but ABBA would never make it really big there.
And it was also hard to have a good follow up single for Waterloo; the UK gave ABBA a hard time for the one and a half year to come...

Wednesday, March 29, 2006

After their tour through Europe and Australia in early 1977 ABBA started working on their new album.
The first song they started with was called A Bit Of Myself, would become The Name Of The Game and would be the first new single.
In early November Polar announced that all vocals were recorded. Agnetha could now rest more and be ready for the birth of her and Bjorn's second baby.
These pictures of the ABBA members taking a break were taken at Marcus Studio in the summer of 1977.

ABBA's last tour was the tour in Japan in March 1980.
The band had been in Japan before for promotion but these were the first and final concerts in Japan.
It would also end the era of ABBA as a touring band; after Japan the band would never tour again.
ABBA did a total of 11 concerts in Japan; half of them at the Budokan in Tokyo.
These pics show Frida and Agnetha live on stage during their final concerts.

Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Dancing Queen is one of ABBA's biggest hits; it is one of their signatures songs.
In Europe the single was released in August 1976 and it was an instant hit. It was also the only ABBA song that made it to the number 1 spot for a week in the US in 1977.
Dancing Queen was recorded at the same time as Fernando between August and December 1975 but it was released as a single after Fernando because the band felt this song was even more special than Fernando.
These pics show Agnetha and Frida while filming the video for Dancing Queen in the summer of 1976.

Monday, March 27, 2006

ABBA The Movie had its worldwide premiere on December 15th 1977 in Australia in the presence of ABBA manager Stig Anderson. The Netherlands and Finland had premieres in the days to come.
The premiere in Sweden was in Stockholm on December 26th 1977. All four ABBA members attended and they arrived like real stars in a huge limousine. They looked like they were very happy and content: 1977 had been a great year on both professional and personal level!

Sunday, March 26, 2006

In 1974 Benny & Frida and Bjorn & Agnetha with their daughter Linda lived very close to each other.
Both couples had a house in Rosendal, a part of Vallentuna near Stockholm. In fact they lived about 50 meters seperated from each other.
But in 1975 both couples would move away.
These pictures taken by German photographer Bubi Heilemann were taken in Vallentuna in July 1974.

ABBA's 1979 tour took them to Canada and the United Stated and finaly Europe.
The North American tour started on September 13th 1979 in Edmonton and ended in Toronto on October 7th.
After a break ABBA started the European tour on October 19th in Gothenburg. The last concert was given in Dublin on November 15th 1979 after 6 concerts at the London Wembley Arena.
These pics show the four ABBA members enjoying their time on stage.

In May 1978 ABBA spend some time in the US and made May ABBA month. Plan was to finally get a breakthrough in the States.
They did a lot of interviews and appeared on the Olivia Newton John special. Olivia was a very high profiled artist at the time thanks to her part in the succesful film Grease so this show would get high ratings.
ABBA did a jamsession with Olivia and other guest Andy Gibb and they also performed a medley of own songs live.

Saturday, March 25, 2006

1977 was a good year for ABBA: wonderful tour, great new album and even a movie. And of course more hits!
Personally it was also a good year for Frida and Agnetha.
Frida found out that her German father was actually still alive. This as a result of an article in the German magazine Bravo on August 25th. Frida and her father met in Stockholm on September 9th.
Agnetha was pregnant of her and Bjorn's second child and gave birth to Christian on December 4th 1977.
These two pics were taken in the summer of 1977 before these events occured and while ABBA were filming scenes for The Movie.

Friday, March 24, 2006

After promoting The Album and The Movie in early 1978 it was back into the studio again for ABBA to work on a new album.
First sessions started on April 24th and the first song was Lovelight, a song that would not end up on the new album.
There were sessions until early June and then the band took a 7 week vacation. They went back into the studio in early August.
First release of these sessions would be the single Summer Night City on September 6th; a song that would not end up on the forthcoming album either.
These pics show ABBA working in the studio in August 1978. Notice how Bjorn seemed to have lost his pants...

Thursday, March 23, 2006

Another photoshoot and another outfit, same setting but different facial expressions...
As said before the imagine was an important factor in the succes of ABBA and with it they had an in-your-face effect since they were everywhere.
Pics like these would end up all over the world in magazines (like Alphabeat in Australia) and also on bedroomwalls!
This is ABBA in 1976.

ABBA The Movie went in premiere in Australia on December 15th 1977 and some days later also in Holland (17th), Finland (23th) and Sweden (26th).
The rest of the world had to wait until the new year: the premiere in the UK, attended by ABBA, was on February 16th 1978 followed by Germany a day later. France and Japan would follow in the months to come as well as other countries.
These gorgeous stills showing Agnetha and Frida were taken late 1977 and were used to promote the film. Alternate pics would also appear on the single sleeve for Eagle.

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

In 1975 ABBA released their album simply called ABBA and they would score hits with songs like SOS and Mamma Mia. They also recorded Fernando and Dancing Queen in 1975 and these songs would become major hits in 1976 and classic hits in the years to come.
The pics show ABBA in their stage outfits in 1975.

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

The ABBA members with their backs to the famous Opera House in Sydney but facing a crowd of photographers, journalists and fans.
ABBA mania was at its peek in March 1977 when ABBA was Down Under for a series of concerts.
This fever was filmed and shown in ABBA The Movie that would have its premiere in Australia late December that same year.

Monday, March 20, 2006

On January 4th 1979 ABBA traveled to New York City to appear at the Music For Unicef gala together with other big acts like the Bee Gees, Olivia Newton John, Rod Stewart, Donna Summer and Andy Gibb.
The gala was filmed om January 9th and ABBA performed their new single Chiquitita and donated all the rights of this song to Unicef.
The pictures were taken during the rehearsals.

Sunday, March 19, 2006

In 1978 the private lives of the four ABBA members changed.
Benny and Frida decided to finally get married and did so on October 6th without much hoopla.
Bjorn and Agnetha decided to end their mariage and seperated at Christmas night.
This seperation made the press start to speculate that the end of ABBA was near which was not the case at all. At least not yet...
Both pics were taken in 1978.

Saturday, March 18, 2006

The four ABBA members during one of many fotoshoots.
These pics were taken in 1975 and ABBA's wardrobe was not as outrageous anymore although it was still memorable.
One of these pictures ended up on a 1978 album sleeve from a dubious Taiwan album called All About ABBA: Mamma Mia...

Friday, March 17, 2006

ABBA was a very succesful band because of many different factors:
Bjorn and Benny had an ear for catchy tunes, Agnetha and Frida could sing anything with their amazing voices and their manager Stig Andersson was a smart one.
Also very important were the videos and pictures of the four members.
They were seen on tv, in magazines and ended up appearing on t-shirts, lunch boxes and even socks.
And they did look good in the seventies as can be seen in these pics all taken in the second half of the seventies.

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