ABBA in London, November 3-7, 1982

ABBA in Nöjesmaskinen, November 17, 1982

 

 

 

 

London, 3-7 November 1982

 

On Wednesday November 3 ABBA started their last big promotion abroad celebrating their first (and last) ten years as a group in London. At 3 pm Agnetha arrived at Heathrow.

She came before  the other memebers and intended to do some Christmas shopping in the capital of Great Britain. At 8 pm she had dinner together with Carole Broughton from Bocu Music at the Polynesian restaurand "Trader Vic" situated under the Hilton hotel.

Frida arrived at 11 pm directly from USA where she promoted her solo album. She came to London by Concorde from New York. The group members stayed at their favorite Dorchester hotel.

    

 

 

 

 

 

Thursday, November 4

 

Agnetha was out at 1 pm and shopping in London's West End. Frida stayed at the hotel resting after the hectic US programme.

Björn and Benny arrived at 6 pm from Stockholm. This evening was devoted to interviews and very late dinner.

 

Friday, November 5

 

At 11.30 am ABBA entered the dining room at the Dorchester hotel and they posed for an extended photo session.

 

 

 

 

 

The group gave several interviews in an adjacent room. A couple of journalists from various radio stations and newspapers were present.

At 2 pm ABBA arrived to The Belfry Club. Björn and Benny were in one big black limousine and Frida & Agnetha in another. The club was full of music business people and the fans. ABBA signed some autographs on the street outside the club and then got something to eat inside the club.

 

 

 

In the evening it was high time for the Ten Years celebration with the show biz people and of course a big cake "The First Ten Years".

 

 

After the official part of the celebration ABBA and other guests sat down and started eating dinner at 9.30 pm with lots of champagne and wine. During the dinner Agnetha was talking with Mike Chapman the future producer of her solo album "Wrap Your Arms Around Me".

Frida and Björn were more relaxed and talked to well-known in the UK DJ Kenny Everett.

 

 

Saturday, November 6

 

Agnetha and Benny arrived at the BBC TV Center at 11.15 am for their appearance on TV special "Superstore". Benny had an Arsenal shirt and Agnetha wore the same outfit she had the day before on the official reception.

 

 

 

Agnetha and Benny answered the questions by phone. The young people who rang TV that morning had no ability to speak slowly and clearly and sometimes it was difficult to understand what they asked for.

Frida and Björn who stayed at the hotel had more press interviews.

 

 

 

After lunch the group stayed at their hotel room and repeated once again the musical part of their TV performance later the same evening. At 3.30 pm all four members arrived at the TV centre for rehearsals of "The Late Late Breakfast Show" with the host Noel Edmonds. About 300 fans were already there. They did not rehearse the song as it was done at the hotel earlier that day.

 

 

 

 

The show started at 6.45 pm with the video "The Day Before You Came" which also had its premiere on British TV. Noel had a longer interview with the group and at the end of the show ABBA sung "Thank You For The Music" live in the studio.

 

The last thing that evening was dinner with the crew and friends/families including Frida's boyfriend Bertil Hjert and Benny's daughter Helen. Very special guests were Time Rice and his wife. The dinner was held in "La Nassa" - an Italian restaurant in Chelsea.

 

 

Sunday, November 7

 

ABBA left London. Benny, Björn and Frida went to Stockholm and Agnetha to Spain for her short holiday.

 

     

 

The last TV interview with ABBA on Swedish TV, November 17, 1982

TV special hosted by Sven Mellander and Stina Dabrowski 

 

 

Sven Mellander: You are here tonight because you celebrate your tenth anniversary.

Stina Dabrowski: Wasn’t it so that you celebrated the 10th anniversary last year?

 

Björn Ulvaeus: Yes, but I don’t think it was right. Maybe the others think different...

 

 

SM: Why not? 

BU: “Ring Ring” is our first real song when we decided to work together. Benny and myself started writing the song ten years ago.

Benny Andersson: On the other hand our first single “People Need Love” came earlier. We had already worked together as “Festfolket” and doing cabare shows at restaurants and so on.

 

SM: And you released your single in USA under the name...

 

Anni-Frid Lyngstad: ... Björn & Benny & Svenska flicka (Swedish girl). 

BU: It was in Japan…

 

         

 

SM: But the name ABBA came with “Ring Ring”. 

AL: Was it so, really? 

BA: ABBA came first in 1974 with “Waterloo”.

AL: Yes, exactly.

BA: We’ve been working together for 11... almost 12 years now.

AL: It can be 10 or 11 or 12th anniversary...

BU: You can be a little confused.

BA: We haven’t celebrated anything anyway.

 

SM: It is high time now.

 SD: Now can we take a look at the last 10 years. Please start the film so we can see how you looked like ten years ago.

 

BA: As today...

 

/Waterloo at Eurovision Song Contest in 1974/

 

Agnetha Fältskog: Oooh...

SM: Why do you say oooh, Agnetha?

 

AL: Did I have a wig there?

 

/Mamma Mia from Made in Sweden for Export 1975/

 

BA: It’s one of our first videos.

AL: We did 4 videos...

 

SM: How does it feel to see these videos?

AF: It feels like 7 years later...

 

/Dancing Queen – the video/

 

 

AL: It must be from Australia??

BA: No, it’s Stockholm – Alexandra disco.

AL: Oh yes, that’s right...

BA: I was more handsome on this video.

 

/Chiquitita live/

 

BA: It’s from our latest tour...

 

SM: When you listen to the songs you can say: oh this is this one and this one and all are hits.

 BA: We’ve done quite many songs which are still good.

 

SM: Can you still the lyrics?

AF: Oh yes, they come directly...

BU: I don’t remember most of them...

AF: When you started singing a song so you continue only and the lyrics come automatically...

BU: The same lyrics all the time... (laugh)

 

         

 

SM: Which is the best ABBA song?

BA: It is very difficult to say...

AF: We like different songs each of us...

BA: We have to pick up some of them...

 

SM: Please, do it.

AF: My favorite is “The Winner Takes It All”

BA: I cannot choose one song only – I agree that “The Winner Takes It All” is very good.

 

SD: It must have happened a lot of crazy things during this period... Frida...

AL: Oh, it was a stupid thing that happened on our tour – which year was it?...

BU: 1977.

AL: Yeas 1977. We did a mini musical which lasted about 20 minutes during the concert. Agnetha and myself had a little different clothes then and blonde wigs. We were of course in a horrible hurry when we changed. When we put the wigs we had to trample down the hair and put a stocking on it. Then you have to fasten the wig with needles so it sits stable on your head. But it was so hurry that I did not manage to do it... So we had a rockier number and we danced and shaked our heads and ... my wig landed on the floor... It was not fun for the audience to see me without hair with the stocking on my head. Then I tried to put the wig on my head but in a hurry I put it back to front... (laugh).

 

 

SD: Was it possible to continue after such a funny incident?

 BU: We had to. We laughed.

BA: We wanted to create a special atmosphere with this musical but after this it was impossible.

 

SM: OK. Now something else. Frida has made her solo project this year and the boys are planning a musical. Tell us about it. 

BA: We’ve been talking about it for many years. 

BU: A journalist said to me some days ago: I found an article from 1970 where you say that you want to write a musical... But now it is for real. We have a contact with Tim Rice. We have met him three times.

 

SM: Are you not afraid of such a big project.

BA: No, not at all. I think that we three manage it.

 

SD: How long time can it take to write a musical.

BU: We don’t know. It is very difficult to say. We can get a kick and it can go fast. But it can take a long time as well.

BA: It takes one year to do an ABBA album including holidays and other things. Here is double so much to do...

 

SM: But there is something else which is hot today. Benny can you start the video?

 

/The Day Before You Came – video/

 

 

 

SM: You don’t like traditional, boring questions which are asked several thousands times. So I want to ask another one. When do ABBA split up?

(laugh – nobody answers)

 

BU: Well, everybody asks this question all the time.

 

SD: Ok, what is the most stupid question you’ve been ever asked? 

BA: Well it was on MIDEM in Cannes some years ago. We got two silly questions one after another. The first one was: “Do you like music, yes – no?” (laugh). The second one was: “How to make a hit?” (laugh).

AL: I started to laugh and I had to leave the room.

BU: You got angry.

AL: Yes, I got angry as well.

 

SD: Your dreams have problably come true now. You are rich and famous and very succesful. But are there still any dreams you have?

BU: Well, I don’t know.

BA: There are a lot of ambitions still. But I don’t know if I had so many dreams...

BU: Sure, you want to do you job better and better. Of course we had dreams about success.

AL: Maybe not you (to Benny). You were successful from the very beginning with Hep Stars.

 

 

SM: But how about the material dreams...

AF: Well, what kind of dreams. When I look back on our 10 years so I can hardly find any glamour in them... It has been extremely hard work all the time.

 

AL: Of course when you have money you can buy what you want but you have to learn to live with it. Then you start to think that other things are more important, not money. You start thinking who am I , what do I want? You think about your work, you want to be better and better and that’s the most important thing.

 

BU: The best thing I know is the music. It is most important. I can live without limousines but not without music because it’s still a great fun for me. Happiness can be small things as time together with the children and so on.

 

AF: The most important things when you get older are that you and your children are healthy, that you have a nature and fresh air you can breathe...

 

 

SM: It has not only been 10 years with ABBA but as well you became 10 years older.

 

AF: You are not happier of living in a double suite.

BA:..neither of getting older...

AF: No, not at all... but wiser. Maybe you get more harmony...

AL: I don’t think so. It can be up and down anyway... But you start to think about your life in a different way.

AF: And it’s the same thing for all people, not only for us who are successful.

BA: ... are you sure...

 

 SD: But you are quite special anyway. In one of the interviews with you you were asked how it was to work with ABBA. Björn said that it was very wonderful because we did not have to compromise at work. Agnetha and Frida said that the time with ABBA was wonderful because they had learned a lot.

 BU: I think we are talking about two different things now. I mean, when I played with Hootenanny Singers I had to compromize all the time. We could not play all the show in the evening because it was too short time, we could not do what we wanted musically because of something and so on and so on.

 

 

AL: Well, I can see it in a different way. Myself and Agnetha when we came to the studio as singers we had to compromise when we sang the material written by Björn and Benny because they as composers had a clear picture of the song from the very beginning. So even if you maybe wanted to do something more as a singer you couldn’t and you had to compromise.

 

AF: On the other hand we could add something to the songs what Björn and Benny had not thought about.

BU: Absolutely.

 

 

SD: It has nothing to do with the fact that you are girls?

AF: Absolutely not. Not in this case.

BA: Not at all. Of course we have a clear picture of what we want to create. Björn and myself start to work with a song long before the girls come to the studio, so it is quite natural that it will be in this way.

AF: The boys know exactly how they want us to sing a song.

 

 

SD: But still we are different men and women. After a divorce it takes 7 years for women to get married again and only 1 year for men.

BU: Is it true?

AL: I think that boys are afraid of being alone.

BA: I think, there are not enough of good boys...

AF: I agree, boys are afraid of living alone.

BU: I was single one week only... what a horrible week...

 

SM: Now you can sing little..

AF: Yes, we do!

 

/singing Thank You For The Music – live/

 

   

 

SM: You are going to sing one more song “Under Attack” very soon but before that you have to attack our interview-machine – Benny.

 

The question: Do you have any complex?

BA: Björn has, he can talk about it...

SM: Don’t  you have any?

BA: I don’t think so. It can be maybe some business affair... no I don’t know.

SM: It’s OK. Björn now.

 

 

The question: Who did you want to be when you were a little child?

AL: Have you ever been little child?

BU: Oh, yes. I suppose that I wanted to be a pop star very early in my life. Probably I had a dream of being train driver or something like that. Is is ok?

SM: OK, Agnetha.

 

AF: It will be sure very difficult.

SM: No difficult questions here.

 

The question: Who do you  admire most?

AF: Now? (thinking; Frida is pointing on herself but Agnetha pretends not to see it).

 

AF: Myself!

AL: Typical Agnetha... (laugh).

 

The question to Frida: Which finds mean most for the human being?

AL: Telefon, radio, plane,  TV, kitchen machines...

 

SM: It’s enough, thanks.

 

 

Performing “Under Attack”

 

   

 

 

After the show