Green light for ABBA museum site in Stockholm

28 08 2010

Stockholm – A museum dedicated to  ABBA may become reality next year after a Stockholm city arts council approved the envisaged museum site, reports said Friday.

“We expect to get a building permit this autumn and aim to open next year,” Magnus Danielsson, head of the company that is organising a touring exhibition of ABBA memorabilia, told the Dagens Nyheter daily.

The building will be shaped like a long tent and given a five-year permit that can be extended a further five years, the report said.

The museum will be on the Stockholm waterfront and can be accessed also by ferry.

The touring exhibition – currently in Melbourne, Australia – features music, original costumes, instruments, photos and other memorabilia.

Former ABBA members Anni-Frid Reuss (formerly Lyngstad), Benny Andersson, Bjorn Ulvaeus and Agnetha Faltskog have provided many items.

Source: Earthnews.

ABBA “Icon” CD + 50 Songs and Pictures by Carl Magnus Palm.

20 08 2010


Waterloo/SOS/I Do I Do/Mamma MIa/Fernando/Dancing Queen/Knowing Me Knowing You/The Name of the game/Take A Chance On Me/Chiquitita/The Winner Takes It all.(31 Aug 2010) Polydor / Umgd B003WO4UWU Pre-order now!

ABBA: 50 Songs and Pictures – Carl Magnus Palm

This book contains 50 songs from the band’s repertoire, as well as striking images, and a written commentary and timeline by the world’s most renowned ABBA expert, Carl Magnus Palm. Each of the songs featured in this prestigious collection is specially arranged for piano, voice and guitar. The result is a magnificent musical, visual and textual publication on the life, music and influence of ABBA.  Pre-order now!

Paperback: 384 pages

Omnibus Press (4 April 2011)


ISBN-10: 1849385262

Thank you for the music? Not if it’s from X Factor says Bjorn.

15 08 2010

ABBA legend Bjorn Ulvaeus has slammed reality music shows such as Simon Cowell’s The X Factor, describing them as ‘cruel’.

Ulvaeus, who enjoyed two decades of worldwide success after winning the 1974 Eurovision Song Contest with Abba, also accused TV talent contests of killing creativity in British music.

‘Such shows want to polish off anything that is original,’ Ulvaeus said. ‘They want to polish off the corners to make them all smooth and mainstream. I think that’s wrong.’

Ulvaeus, now 65, added: ‘There was nothing mainstream about The Stones or The Beatles, who were our big influence when we started out as Abba.

‘This way of picking people by audition is very different from how Abba started out in the music industry. We grew organically.’

Ulvaeus formed Abba in Stockholm in the early Seventies with fellow Swedes Benny Andersson and Agnetha Faltskog and Norwegian-born Frida Lyngstad.

‘We just happened to get together and we found that we had common interests,’ he said. We started to play and sing together. We were not auditioned and that’s a big difference.

‘None of the talent of today go out on the road and learn their craft like the bands of the Sixties and Seventies would.

‘Look at The Beatles, how they struggled, how they worked in order to become such a good little band. And that’s why they had such longevity and are still admired today.’

Without the X Factor: Evictees John and Edward Grimes, known as ‘Jedward’, were voted out of the show

Ulvaeus said he never watches The X Factor, which has produced acts such as Leona Lewis and Irish twin duo Jedward, because ‘it is very cruel and very often the contestants are given the wrong sort of advice’.

‘I don’t like the way a young person is standing there and is sometimes humiliated,’ he added.

‘And then they are given advice by someone who is not an expert in any way. Maybe they get the impression that this is the way it had to be, which is wrong.

‘Everyone should pursue whatever is original in oneself. That’s the way for a long life in music.

‘Who are the artists who are still with us from a long time back? Those are the ones that are so original that they stand out.’

Ulvaeus believes it is now far harder for aspiring young musicians and singers to make the breakthrough.

‘It’s definitely more difficult because there is so much more out there of everything,’ he said. ‘To be heard, you have to shout in a way that you never had to do. I remember for us, after having won Eurovision, the key thing to do was to appear on Top Of The Pops at the right time.

‘You can’t do that any more, because there’s no Top Of The Pops and no programme that is

like it. So it’s much more difficult, in every way, to break through today. As a result, there are going to be a lot of casualties from reality shows. I’m happy we had the Seventies.’

Abba split in the early Eighties but 3,200 of their records still sell across the world every day.

Ulvaeus was speaking during a visit to London with writing partner Benny Andersson for the launch of the double CD of Kristina, their first major musical since Mamma Mia!

Kristina is a fictional story based on historical events. It tells of a poverty-struck Swedish family that emigrates to the US in the 1850s. Ulvaeus and Andersson wrote the work in the early Nineties but it has only recently been translated into English.

Its UK premiere took place at the Royal Albert Hall in April with British singer Russell Watson in the lead role. He also features on the CD.

Despite all the recent rumours of a final Abba reunion tour, Andersson, 63, says it is unlikely they will ever bow to popular demand and re-form. The band last performed together in 1999 at a birthday party.

Andersson said: ‘That birthday appearance we made for a close friend in Sweden is probably the last time you’ll ever see us on a stage together.’ Ulvaeus added: ‘Let people remember us as an ambitious, energetic, young group. A wonderful memory.’


Getaway with ABBAWORLD!

11 08 2010

ABBAWORLD in Melbourne features on the channel 9 show ‘Getaway’ on Thursday August 12 at 7.30 pm.

Host Dermet Brereton tours through the exhbition with Chris Patrick, author of “ABBA Let The Music Speak”.


INTERMEZZO No.59 – Out Now!

3 08 2010

For more information on joining Intermezzo click on the pictures above.