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Happy ABBA-versary! Fans mark 50 years since 'Waterloo' took the world by storm

24 Comments
By JILL LAWLESS

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In Oklahoma, where I was teaching, I knew a couple of guys who were professional musicians. (No, you've never heard of them; but I bet they're still trying to make it.) Over some beers they were talking about an upcoming concert they were perform in for. I aske what they planned to play. One of them said, "And some ABBA." I was shocked. "Isn't ABBA just bubble gum pop?" Yes, they said, but ABBA does pop better than anyone."

So they are fine with me. If a pro doesn't mind playing them, then I don't mind listening to them.

3 ( +6 / -3 )

They were a brilliant pop group. Great songs.

Both Lennon and McCartney said good things about them, knowing quality music when they heard it.

6 ( +9 / -3 )

Completely overhyped trash. Always was, always will be. Anyone who was alive in the 80s will remember that no one dared to say they loved this insipid band. That's how it should have stayed.

-12 ( +2 / -14 )

Anyone who was alive in the 80s will remember that no one dared to say they loved this insipid band

I was alive in the 80s. I remember types desperate to look cool and/or knowledgeable about music looking down on ABBA.

Most people grew out of this. Some obviously didn’t.

Great pop band. Knew how to craft catchy and memorable pop songs with the best of them. The way some talk, you’d think is easy.

5 ( +10 / -5 )

The most overrated, insipid, lame, boring musical band of the modern history..

-13 ( +3 / -16 )

Love 'em or hate 'em (I like a lot of their songs), it's hard to deny they mastered the craft of catchy pop songs with great voices and deft arrangement. You don't make songs that last generations without some real talent.

3 ( +6 / -3 )

My neighbor from Sweden has a story about ABBA.

When he attended a barn dance, a long time ago, ABBA performed there. Back before they were famous. That's the whole story.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

Both Lennon and McCartney said good things about them, knowing quality music when they heard it.

Watch out. We could get replies from the types ( people who ‘know’ music ) telling us Lennon and McCartney are overrated.

Educational.

7 ( +10 / -3 )

My neighbor from Sweden has a story about ABBA. 

When he attended a barn dance, a long time ago, ABBA performed there. Back before they were famous. That's the whole story.

But a great story! I’d like to have one like that. (I do have one involving Taco Bell and Mötley Crüe, but I’ll save that for a more relevant article.)

3 ( +5 / -2 )

Completely overhyped trash. Always was, always will be. Anyone who was alive in the 80s will remember that no one dared to say they loved this insipid band. That's how it should have stayed.

Music is subjective and we all have various degrees of tastes music is no exception, however, you feel is how you feel with that being said, some things are indisputable and ABBA has sold over 380 million records worldwide, making them one of the best-selling music artists of all time. ABBA had numerous hits throughout their career. While the exact number can vary depending on how one defines a "hit," they released many singles that charted highly around the world. Some of their most well-known hits include "Dancing Queen," "Mamma Mia," "Fernando," "Take a Chance on Me," "Waterloo," "The Winner Takes It All," and "Knowing Me, Knowing You," among others. Their music consistently charted in multiple countries and various music charts, contributing to their widespread popularity.

Other accomplishments include:

Grammy Award for Best Pop Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocal for "Dancing Queen" (1977)

Inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame (2010) and the Swedish Music Hall of Fame (2014)

Influence on pop culture and Subsequent generations of Musicians.

Revived interest in their music through the success of the musical ****"Mamma Mia!"

Iconic fashion sense and distinctive style that in many ways persists in some form or another.

Continued popularity through tribute bands, concerts, and appearances in various media.

Timeless legacy with their music frequently featured in movies, commercials, and television shows.

Even Bono from U2 was deeply influenced by the band as well as countless other musicians such as Madonna

Lady Gaga

Kylie Minogue

Oasis

The Killers

Coldplay

Abba may not be everyone's cup of tea, but to dismiss them and their music as junk outright is just flat-out not dealing with reality.

-1 ( +6 / -7 )

Watch out. We could get replies from the types ( people who ‘know’ music ) telling us Lennon and McCartney are overrated.

I wouldn’t be surprised!

4 ( +7 / -3 )

Awesome group.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

Just listened to it--love Waterloo.

And S.O.S.!!!

7 ( +7 / -0 )

I saw the victory live on TV when I was 12. I wasn't a big fan of the music myself, but ABBA were one of the pop superstars of the time. It was a great time.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Lovers of music and song - both the young and the young at heart, have fond memories of the contributions of Agnetha Faltskog, Björn Ulvaeus, Benny Andersson and Anni-Frid Lyngstad. Long live the quartet.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Can you hear the drums, Fernando?

Seems like a lot of JT folks can't

4 ( +4 / -0 )

factcheckerToday  08:45 am JST

Completely overhyped trash. Always was, always will be. Anyone who was alive in the 80s will remember that no one dared to say they loved this insipid band. That's how it should have stayed.

WRONG. ABBA was a 'guilty pleasure' for us boys in the class of 1994. Of course seeing two Swedish chicks - one blonde and one redhead on video adds to the catchy songs. And they are catchy, unlike the rubbish of today.

> JimizoToday  09:28 am JST

Anyone who was alive in the 80s will remember that no one dared to say they loved this insipid band

I was alive in the 80s. I remember types desperate to look cool and/or knowledgeable about music looking down on ABBA.

Most people grew out of this. Some obviously didn’t.

Great pop band. Knew how to craft catchy and memorable pop songs with the best of them. The way some talk, you’d think is easy.

Just because it's 'pop' doesn't always means it's bad. Erasure made an EP of ABBA covers,

bass4funkToday  01:28 pm JST

Completely overhyped trash. Always was, always will be. Anyone who was alive in the 80s will remember that no one dared to say they loved this insipid band. That's how it should have stayed.

ABBA had numerous hits throughout their career. While the exact number can vary depending on how one defines a "hit," they released many singles that charted highly around the world. Some of their most well-known hits include "Dancing Queen," "Mamma Mia," "Fernando," "Take a Chance on Me," "Waterloo," "The Winner Takes It All," and "Knowing Me, Knowing You," among others. Their music consistently charted in multiple countries and various music charts, contributing to their widespread popularity.

The Beatles made a lot of 'pop' music that changed the world and well known to all. Catchy melodies and just being fun - what's so wrong about that?

Even Bono from U2 was deeply influenced by the band as well as countless other musicians such as Madonna

Lady Gaga

Kylie Minogue

Oasis

The Killers

Coldplay

Abba may not be everyone's cup of tea, but to dismiss them and their music as junk outright is just flat-out not dealing with reality.

I have always loved U2 and I always will. Oasis is cool too and Kylie is cute - I like her earlier stuff but not her later autotuned garbage.

ABBA, like Roxy Music, Kraftwerk, U2 and other bands have inspired a lot of terrific and terrible bands. That's the legacy of an iconic good band in itself and ABBA is one of them.

I remember 'Waterloo' as a kid fondly on my parents' car radio when we visited my grandparents in Indiana, along with hits by Paul McCartney, George Harrison, Kraftwerk, et al. That's what the best childhood memories are made of. As for being getting all geeky with this at wedding parties and such, ahhhhh - damn! SMH.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Just because it's 'pop' doesn't always means it's bad

I fully agree.

Lots of great pop music. ABBA in the textbook of how to do it along with other pop greats.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

ABBA is great. And STP was a fan of theirs and built on their musical influences; STP in their music and lyrics went beyond the depth of any Beatles song too.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

zibalaToday  03:23 pm JST

ABBA is great. And STP was a fan of theirs and built on their musical influences; STP in their music and lyrics went beyond the depth of any Beatles song too.

Who is 'STP'? There was a band called STP = Stone Temple Pilots.

Lemmy Kilmeister of Motorhead was a HUGE fan of ABBA. He also dug the Bee Gees, Everley Brothers, Little Richard, and more - 'any f'n thing'. He always said that you shouldn't let anyone dictate to you your musical tastes, as long as you like it. When the band was going there was a blog where you could 'chat' with him. Someone asked him who his favorite composers were, he replied 'Lennon and McCartney'.

The 70s had a lot of garbage nobody wants to remember. ABBA was a guilty pleasure for us boys in the class of 1984. They stand up. Does anybody want to remember Captain + Tenille, the late Melanie, Starland Vocal Band, disco duck and all that crap from the mid 70s pre-punk era? NO!

ABBA stands out, they made their impact. Even the harder-edged Roxette was influenced by them and I have always loved Roxette and always will.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Who is 'STP'? There was a band called STP = Stone Temple Pilots.

That's right.

Greatest group of the 90's and early 2000s. You can find bits of Beatles, Led Zeppelin, the Carpenters, David Bowie, the Stones and so forth in their music.

The most diverse band musically since the Beatles.

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

Just listened to it--love Waterloo.

And S.O.S.!!!

John Lennon said S.O.S. was “perfect”.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Completely overhyped trash. Always was, always will be.

And what makes you opinion any better than the millions of people who like them? Have you written any songs that anyone wants to listen to? Are you a respected musician? I am not a fan of Abba but I don't come here just to rag on people who are. They obviously did something very right to achieve the success they did.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Completely overhyped trash. Always was, always will be.

Music is subjective. It really is up to the listener. And as it is entirely up to the listener, the only objective qualification there is to be made about whether music is good or not, is the number of people who listen to it.

And a hell of a lot of people listened to ABBA. So objectively, it's some of the best music there has ever been (even though I can't stand them myself). There is no over or under hype, there is just the hype they got, and that's literally what qualifies them as having made good music.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

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