(Blogger note: Except for 2013-14 updates below, much of this website was written between 2009-11. Reader update: All 'abba4ever' forum hyperlinks (within the blog's text) are defunct. (Forum has closed.))

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

A diversion: Better than any ABBA

Sorry, ABBA, but what follows shows why you were ignored for 30+ years in my world. Not that this had any ill effect whatsoever, of course (on the band).

I really dislike the phrase "you rock". Because many who say it don't have much of an idea what it means or what they're talkin' about.

THIS 'rocks'. Watch your ears (and John Entwistle's thundering bass). Just in case: The 'crazy' windmill-arm dude is The Who's main man Mr. Pete Townshend:

Hope to god this stays posted.....(Link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SCNeVHv3Mlg&fmt=18 )

Bonus: Oh...look: More people who could play instruments/or sing. (On TV, no less. Different "genre" than above.): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MkkeY5Pl8Pk&fmt=18

Even more of those type of people: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8z1kLUP3ohg&feature=related&fmt=18
(For fans of this band's older roster: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RdD6L4cKKU8  )

A picture of Ms. Fältskog worth a thousand words

© 2009-2011 (original portions only)

Not to worry... not going to write 1000 words...this time. (Close.)

And be warned: I'm far from alone re this, but a bit of "retro-worship" is going to follow here. I obviously think that this singer was special in more ways than one. If you don't want to engage in any of that, please try some other, music-related posts here (link). Plus, it's further noted that Ms. Fältskog once stated that she didn't have any need or desire for people to "worship" her. (That said, she had lots of photos taken, back in the day....Possibly just "part of the job" though.)


This blog has many words attempting to describe the difficult to describe: An inspiring performer, outstanding popular music, etc. Too many of those words at times.

Thankfully, many great (yes; nostalgic) photos exist of photogenic/telegenic/cybergenic Agnetha Fältskog. E.g., You Tube abounds with them inside tributes, etc.(Plus a link to "Andy's ABBA images"; picture web site; includes an excellent story about meeting Ms. Fältskog.)

With much to choose from I still really like this simple, black and white one from 1977. (Below.) I like it because I feel it 'says' much about the performer. As written elsewhere here, both ABBA front singers were excellent presenters and performers whenever the lights came on.

 Rarely "holding back" (video link to a quick take of her pure voice); doing what she does best: Singing. "Living" the song....as she often did.

This photo currently graces the "Wikipedia" entry for Agnetha Fältskog:
("...She was blindingly beautiful...")

(Agnetha Fältskog, ABBA, Ekeberghallen, Oslo, Norway, January 28th 1977. Author: Helge Øverås (This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported License. In short: you are free to distribute and modify the file as long as you attribute its author(s) or licensor(s). It's inclusion does not constitute an endorsement of this website, expressed or implied.)

As always, a bonus: So many great pictures to choose from but here are a couple more faves. An attractive woman, at different ages.... and, will leave the rest to the (various-sized) pics.

Agnetha - ABBA Pictures, Images and Photos

OK; even more beauty follows:  I mean, are you kidding me? Just exactly how did many of us in the USA (hailin' from the '70s &'80s) somehow miss this lady.... at her utmost...? Agnetha slipped by some of us.  (OK, I'm 'owned' (a bit) -- via echoes of the past no less (of this lady).
Not alone....
(Aside: While we're on it, cant' resist this either: "Oowwnzz! Oowwnzzz!" (link))

Of course this blog includes some suggestions about that, e.g.; posts here and here. If anyone cares I myself would not go near (an) ABBA (song); intent upon exploring various rock music genres at the time -- like many of my peers. (ABBA didn't fit that.) And obviously -- for a few reasons -- not enough (or ineffective) "promo" was done in the U.S. (for ABBA). (Ref.:"Bright Lights, Dark Shadows" by C.M. Palm, pages 380-81, 384, 387.) Also, with proper promotion, the "right" songs, etc., Agnetha (herself) likely could have been as "big" as she wanted to be in North America. (Maybe all the Americas...)  Home, family and privacy (apparently) took precedence, however.  
Aside: One interesting observation re ABBA (not) 'conquering' the American market is linked here.

(2011 comment: An intriguing photo, above from long ago. (Screen cap; source.) Apparently from a 'bare shoulders(?)' session Agnetha did, but this particular photo is different from others (published from it). Almost seems 'backstage'; candid. 
One interpretation:  Agnetha is posed (poised?) for a kiss...What is on her mind here?....And what might her eyes be 'saying'? (Hint: Not much?? Those dewy lashes 'speak volumes'... Agnetha: Once again showing an ability to "come through the screen" - whether in video or via photographs.)
A fetching photo. (How did the photographer manage to hold on to the camera?  I think a lot of us would not have been able to... ) Sultry/sexy (of course), but vulnerability seems to show too. 
Actually, this pic. might be a poster for sexy/vulnerable....
Anyone know more about it? Pls. comment below. (Note: A sharper version of the photo above is available via this forum link.)

Last pic. source, edited: http://www.abbafanclub.nl/about_abba/the_band.html

Source for most (other) photos: http://www.iphpbb.com/board/ftopic-30652567nx61610-3747.html and http://www.iphpbb.com/board/ftopic-30652567nx61610-1512-3090.html

A few more old-but-sensational shots, from the "abba4ever" forum (link, right-click): http://www.iphpbb.com/board/ftopic-30652567nx61610-3747-2400.html

And I've only scratched the surface. (Lots of pictures were done...a photogenic subject ...) Go here (link below) if you'd like to: a) torture yourself more or, b) enjoy "retro"-rapture (I guess). Many images submitted there. (Plus here is another source for many pics; an excellent site.) And, remember:  The lady (originally) from
Jönköping is really talented also(Plus: She even played some hoops once in awhile...)

Ms. Fältskog is a proud grandmother nowadays.....(And makes public appearances now and then.)

Link: http://www.iphpbb.com/board/ftopic-30652567nx61610-1512.html

(By the way, as incredible as it may seem this amazing lady might not have thought herself beautiful. I have not verified the quotation nor the date of it, but included is a link to a web page that ends with the following, attributed to Agnetha: 
 "I am not beautiful and not sexy", says Agnetha in the book "Forebilder". 
On the contrary. I have a complex about my body..."
A link where the full quotation may be seen: http://www.fortunecity.com/meltingpot/huntington/108/id18.htm

Much of the rest of the world would disagree...
 (Ms. Fältskog: Often a pragmatic, self-effacing person, but one who might have been a little less hard upon herself -- at least in the younger days. Her too-harsh (attributed) observation also - of course -  ignored other attributes. (And the fact that endless photos were requested/taken of the beautiful singer...) E.g.: Men tend to prefer a pretty face (link). They really can't help themselves (link)!
Though Agnetha herself might not necessarily agree with such words, have another beauty - Vanessa Angel - sum things up nicely from the 1996 movie Kingpin:
YouTube video snippet... bad language soon after the 1:07 mark - after Vanessa's aphorism (link) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zrt2dMocQ5g&#t=55s)

(Continuing) One additional link, showing the natural beauty looking good with no "slap". (Make-up.)

Bonus: "Devastatingly beautiful" is how one Internet commenter referred to Agnetha from the earlier days. Interesting. An attractive person over many years, my favorite "Agnetha look" of all (thanks for asking!) is from the mid-1970's with her magnificent long blonde hair and nice,straight eyebrows. (Furrowed, as appropriate. Note: You can even enjoy a "favorite Agnetha look" poll, here.) The screen cap/YT link below is from 1975, (camera-shot "dissolve" mode), as she also sings my favorite ABBA song (where she leads). Plus: Another good example (video) of how Ms. Fältskog often looked for and "played to" the live camera. Along with her great gaze and smile, she could connect with viewers this way. Note: Both ABBA singers regularly achieved this....

(low-res screen cap/edit)

February, 2010 update: An amazing picture is here, at "Mikory's ABBA blog" (link, right-click). Don't think that (pregnant) Agnetha was a trouper? How high is that ladder (look at the man holding it for perspective)? What exactly were they all thinking? (If there was any thinking....) Why didn't they just lower the "elevator" (it's on a forklift or something)? Think soon-to-be-ex-husband Bjorn didn't hear about this stunt a bit when poor Agnetha reached the top?

Another bit of humor, more recent "That's what happens when you sit next to her ... you look dumb in comparison..."  -- Quip from the 'abba4ver' fan forum on an ABBA-era photo featuring beauty Agnetha. (From 'TheNumberOneJumpJack'.) Link (new window) to the forum page/comment (to enjoy)

Aside: Notice the watch(es) in many of Ms.Fältskog's photos (above)? I'm sure watch companies were happy to provide her with some, but one report long ago insisted that this performer also liked to be punctual for rehearsals, engagements, etc. (Ref. page 321.)

 Image source: http://imageshack.us/f/39/89693806uj6cpia.jpg/

(Blog note: This post entry is backdated to better fit within the order of posts as displayed here. It's actual creation date is 7/8/09. Updated: 10/20/09, Feb., 2010, Nov., 2011 and March, 2012. - Mr. D. Tails) Link to my full blog: http://star4abba.blogspot.com/

(YT video link)

Singing Sirens: ABBA's 'The Day Before You Came'

© 2009-2013 (original portions). Slightly updated, 2013.

(Original text:) It wasn't always easy to tell with some ABBA songs how adept, how talented the two ABBA front singers were. (Agnetha (äng-EH-tä) Fältskog and Anni-Frid Lyngstad.) However, not with the pensive "jewel" that follows. (Embedded video is below.)

To me, the last minute-plus of "The Day Before You Came" perhaps comes close to what Odysseus (Ulysses) might have heard, lashed to the mast, his rowers' ears covered with beeswax. Well; fairly close, I imagine.... Here we have Anni-Frid Lyngstad's finest* single moment with ABBA: Her haunting solo vocal line, backing this song. (Termed "operatic" here.) It seems to emanate straight from the fjords of her birthplace. Combined with Benny Andersson's skillfully accompanying instrumental: The striking voice line and the synth finally "resolved" together at the very end. (FWIW: Some listeners contend that part of "Frida's" backing solo is actually Benny's synth. I believe that the instrument may 'take over' for just a very short portion (of it)...)
Incongruous and relentless snare drum/synth percussion steps us through the entire, dreary proceedings. (Page 97. The same author has noted that Åke Sundqvist played snare drum on this recording.)

(*A worthwhile aside, briefly: Frida's rich lead vocal in ABBA's "Knowing Me, Knowing You": Another "best". Also; nice lead in "One Man, One Woman".  "Super Trouper", as well. A bit difficult to pick out, but magnificent Frida at moments on "If It Wasn't For the Nights". Most stellar Frida: "Our Last Summer" and the lovely "Gonna Sing You My Love Song". Absolute velvet (-voiced) Frida: Her lead in "The King Has Lost His Crown" (must-see video linked). Tiny comment: Might have featured her even more .. Though her sonorous harmony contributions in "The King..." are...."awesome" . Please enjoy music expert Christopher Patrick's (much) more sophisticated observations about this "understated treasure" (ABBA song)... here (link). And one more worthwhile suggestion while we're here: Learn much about Frida and ABBA in general via this outstanding "101 videos" (ABBA) list. Excellent, comprehensive work by a very knowledgeable fan. (Link to list.))
(One more for Frida: Not ABBA's top song but Frida's clear, bright lead on catchy "You Owe Me One" - very enjoyable. (Along with Agnetha's intertwined, high harmonies...) Can't stop: Nice, quick YT birthday tribute (for Frida) by aficionado '2Shaymcn'; link, new window. Please enjoy a bit more of "prime" Frida via the embedded video at the end of the post...))

(Continuing previous text:) And, of course, gloomily mundane "The Day Before..." is a match for Ms. Fältskog's interpretive abilities. Her perfect, feminine voice appealingly smooths the hour-by-hour drag.

(And more, re video: Lip-synched by Agnetha in beautiful close-up, below; issuing a few of the saddest gazes possible....Lips that "say it all"....Dressed in stand-out red, but with black gradations (etc.); a good color scheme. (W/appropriately dark suits for the others.) Plus, (more) incredible looks (from Agnetha) on the train, etc. in the brief, included"official" video segment (at the end; excellent. Sorry about the "crawl", though..). A good actress...almost too alluring.)

(Resuming:) ABBA's finest complete song...it's beyond "pop", and its writers/producers deserve much credit. But siren singing/presenting, as well. (I.e., beguiling.)

All grown up now (although grown apart); we witness the 'super-group''s last recorded song. Amazing: Right from the "snow globe-opening" start, there's that big, old, slightly kitschy 'ABBA' sign sparkling behind the group....      as a somber masterpiece is doled out: 
("Wait...where's ABBA?")

"Dancing Queen"
we are no longer....

A decent-quality video follows. Thank you to "ABBADiego" for producing, and for allowing embedding. (Headphones suggested.)

(Link to this YT video if needed: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8GAPAvev-os&fmt=22)

(Plus: A link to the full, official video for this song: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1HnOFwqpLRQ  )

(screen cap; link/video are below)
Bonus: The ABBA song described above
has a more-than-decent 'B' side.  
(Also happens to continue a mythic 'theme' touched upon above (independently, of course). (Cassandra of Troy...)) 
This song is yet more ABBA "vocal magic" on display. A brilliantly arranged song, beautiful harmonies; but where listeners can at times (also) "compare and contrast" the two singers' voices. Frida has the wonderful lead, of course, but Agnetha's "crying voice" high harmonies/melody take-overs comprise some vintage Ms. Fältskog (of ABBA). Typically (i.e., remarkably) skillful in harmony through much of the song... but her final two chorus melody-appropriations (refrains beginning: "Sorry Cassandra I misunderstood..."): Prime, "Agnetha in a 'nutshell'" (vocally) from her ABBA days.... at least to this listener. It's a distinguishing "sample": (Current YT link)  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Os_bSwg02J4
(Further credit to ABBA's producers and especially engineer Michael Tretow for vocal-enhancing work on Cassandra. Also, FWIW: To this listener, Agnetha's voice seems just slightly "pinched" or tense within the first chorus of this recording. (I realize that she is 'holding back' a bit, early in the song.) That seems to diminish the 'next time(s) around' (for the chorus)....)

2013 update: An excellent current YT production of 'Cassandra' (1982) followed by 'Under Attack'. Thank you to 'Fafner888' for producing and permitting embedding. Both singers are wonderful (recorded), but Frida's lead in 'Cassandra' comes through beautifully (in this production), as her intricate harmonies also do in 'Under Attack': 

(video link)

  For this post also ref.:  Bright Lights, Dark Shadows: The Real Story of ABBA, 2008 edition,
Carl Magnus Palm, author, pp. 456-58.
If interested also please ref. pages 93-95 in Christopher Patrick's ABBA: Let the Music Speak for more complete (and learned) analysis of Cassandra.and Under Attack


(Blog note: This post entry is backdated to better fit within the order of posts as displayed here. It's actual creation date is 6/29/09. Updated, 2010. - Mr. D. Tails)

Link to full blog: http://star4abba.blogspot.com/

So why did I write all of this....

© 2009-2014 (original portions)

There are a lot of words written here (in this blog). Why bother? The "retro-fascinated" explain it a bit:

#1) What is Twitter? What's this 'microblogging'...?
#2) Any idiot with a web connection (+ free speech) can do this now, right??

- End of lame humor section -

The 'real' reasons, for those who may have interest: 

1. As should be apparent from the posts here, I'm pleasantly surprised to discover that 'supergroup' (i.e., exceptionally successful) ABBA was so good at what they did. It is a much-belated find for me, mainly through videos currently out on You Tube. (Record companies: I've been motivated to purchase your products after initial discovery via You Tube....) Like many I didn't pay them much mind in their day. Like others, I've learned that while it's not Beethoven, close to 400 million record sales (by ABBA) have occurred for some good reasons. (E.g., four talented members plus other important individuals/occurrences.)

And also that iconic front singer Agnetha (äng-NĒ-ə-tä) Fältskog was/is an all-around accomplished performer. Her partner Anni-Frid Lyngstad is, too. Catching up with (most of) the rest of the world has been an enjoyable experience, especially for a person who appreciates music. So much so that it provided motivation to research/write about it. (Sometimes of course with ABBA on the headphones...) If you look a bit, there is much public information available -- good or suspect -- about the legendary music group and the popular Ms. Fältskog. I've tried to link/credit my various sources.

1a. It's often a good exercise to try writing about things or people that interest you, are inspiring, etc. That is part of the effort here: To try an describe things that are not easily put into words. E.g., great popular music songs, a beautiful voice, etc. It certainly helps to also have the opportunity to link to available video performances and to include a few photos. Sometimes words are best however, to fully express comments, reactions, analysis, insights.  

And, as an additional point, I believe that Ms. Fältskog is both an underrated singer/performer, and not widely known (in much detail) in the United States. It's been enjoyable (for me, anyway) to learn a little more about her music-related efforts and to write (publicly) about them. (A blog obviously allows planned integration of descriptive links, videos, etc.)  I know I'll never meet the Swedish singer and that she also does not look at websites such as this. But finding out more about the artist through research (of her public career) possibly brings us all slightly closer to the person. Provides us with a (long-distance) way to "meet" the singer, and/or perhaps offers insight and understanding about this performer.

(One more brief - "old dude" - aside possibly for a younger reader or two. (Thank you for taking a look (back) here...): Finely-crafted popular music from the 1960s and '70s was followed seriously by many listeners (at the time). (Including young Agnetha Fältskog, BTW.)     
(Insert: Back then you sometimes were identified or even defined  - to a degree - by your (vinyl) record collection...)
 Lighter "fare" such as (early) ABBA songs had plenty of competition 'back in the day' but still received much (radio) air-play.  (AM radio play: A reason why non-progressive/rock ABBA may have been unfairly dismissed during that time period, by some...) 
Money surely was one motive then, but contrast that with many of the "ka-ching"-first, video-centric "products" passed off as music entertainment today.  (One notable exception: Grammy-winning Adele, a singer with "the goods". (A voice.))

In short, especially for certain older people the art of popular music was/is a passion. We admire those who really worked at producing outstanding music... and particularly those whose efforts seem to stand the test of time.  
(In a very real way popular artists from the period almost HAD to create something first-rate. Competitors were many, and often capable. If you did not produce (quality) someone else would. (Competition was (also) fierce for listeners, etc.) 
Plus the whole video performance aspect ("requirement") was only starting to emerge...)
We (all) now know those 20-25 years offer(ed) a treasure of finely-written and -performed music.) 

(Continuing previous text:) "Mea culpa": A few of the earlier entries in this blog are a bit over the top with the "discovery" of alluring Agnetha. It's a little embarrassing at times, in retrospect. (I.e., I'm 'owned'  (was)....by a lady I never met?!?) But I'll endure that (and leave most posts intact) : Her natural star power was enough to unleash those, even as a 30-or-so-year echo from the past. (Huh?? OK; try this link to a 1979 YT vid. to see a little of what I'm talking about. (Note: Nearly three million views for this long-ago video performance, now...) Both ABBA ladies are fantastic here. (To playback & somewhat blurry.) But check out multiple-camera-tracking Agnetha's sexy "pounce", from around the 4:18 mark. (I.e., right at the "take it now or leave it" line...(Just slay me right now...))  Likely no one told or directed her to do that for us. Looked good from any angle. 
For me - once again - (and for others), Agnetha (has the unusual ability to)  "get through the (viewing) screen" (throughout this video).
 Update: Link to a much clearer version of this performance, presently on YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uzwYcn1N9-c&fmt=18)

(With that keyboard pic....Can't resist throwing in this YT link to an edgy 1985 song/video from Agnetha's TV special: 'Click Track' (link). Decent '80s video actually. Agnetha pulls it off....)

Readers can decide how well that I did. I think that my efforts improved a bit as I learned more and got used to writing the entries. The initial enthusiasm in early posts is good, but some actual knowledge works its way in later in the more recent entries. BTW: If someone able to foretell the future had informed me back a year-plus ago that I would produce a 60-post blog about ABBA ("nooo...") and Ms. Fältskog ("who"??)....I would have inquired as to which alternative reality they just warped in from. Would probably have also questioned their ancestry.

(YT video link)

Last note: I have much to say about certain things, and (clearly) will "go the long way around (the barn)" to do it at times. Not sure this blog effort helped much with that, but I actually did try to "reign it in", occasionally. At least a few sentences here and there did get edited out. I mean....can you imagine.... (i.e., otherwise; without those feeble edits)?? And, there's even a summary post.  And a condensed summary. 
Thank you to any readers, for taking the time.

Link to full blog: http://star4abba.blogspot.com/

Note: This post entry is backdated to better fit within the order of posts. It's actual creation date is 6/21/09. - Mr. D. Tails

Saturday, April 25, 2009

ABBA fan Sen. John McCain gettin' sarcastic

FWIW, I don't always agree with U.S. Senator and former presidential candidate John McCain. But he's a huge ABBA fan. Despite that ;) ...he's a good man and a strong leader. The U.S. would always benefit from more like him. (12/09 update/commentary: After his obstructing performance during the recent U.S. health care debate, not so sure anymore....)

It's awhile ago now, but I enjoy the following quotations from Sen. McCain re ABBA and his affinity for them. I (now) agree. They were very good and despite widespread popularity (mainly outside the U.S.) , they're still underrated:

“Dare I say ABBA. Everybody says, ‘Ehhh, ABBA.’ Why is that? ABBA was the largest selling (recording act ever). Nobody likes them but they sold more records than anybody in the history of the world, including the Beatles. But everybody hates them. (But) you’re a no-class guy if you like ABBA. Why does everybody go see ‘Mamma Mia?’ Hypocrisy! Rank hypocrisy! I’m not embarassed to say I like ABBA, ‘Dancing Queen.’”
More from McCain. If elected, “the background music would be ABBA in the elevators all over the White House.”
Source: Ken Herman 10/17/07 article, Austin American-Statesman

Image from LIFE photo archives

Link to my full blog: http://star4abba.blogspot.com/

Note: This blog entry is backdated to better fit within the listing of all of my posts. Its actual creation date is 6/14/09. - Mr. D. Tails

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Way back when: Blonde ABBA supergirl

© 2009-2010 (original portions). This is an unofficial website. We're taking a brief look at a couple of 1970s ABBA songs in this entry...

Though it's linked to elsewhere here (in a sea of words), I had to pull this video clip out out for its own post. (The first one, below. Some text follows, but the embedded videos (below) are the 'stars' of this post. Also: If you'd prefer to read music-focused posts via this website (instead of this (early-in-the-process-of- re-discovery) one), please peruse its summary page.)

Not a huge fan of the too-sweet pop song itself, but -- like everyone else -- I love the video performance here (below) plus the incredible outfits. (Some from 1974 are sexist and perhaps demeaning...yeah, OK.)

Singing partner Frida is very attractive (Anni-Frid Lyngstad). But how can she possibly be noticed next to blonde "supergirl"(Agnetha Fältskog...)  As said previously: Hottest girl on the world stage for (quite) awhile in my book. (This generally unfavorable 2008 article labels her "pop's ultimate sex symbol". Agreed.)

Bjorn (ex-husband) seems like an OK dude in interviews, but how could he eventually walk away from HER?? (Or get himself kicked out. Insert: I'm hardly the first to ponder this...) But it almost always takes two to "tangle"....

Whatever: Agnetha (ahng-EH-tah) may have been hurt more by their split-up, I'd speculate, based upon subsequent interviews ,and also this particular (attributed) quotation:
"It has always felt like a failure that Bjorn and I couldn't keep our family together. You never get it back, but to this day I don't regret splitting up. The reason behind our separation is one of those things I definitely don't want to go into!"

Well....Agnetha obviously cared, but....for many in the audience; it's all secondary. Especially when you looked like this.... (sorry for the first frozen frame, though.)

(Link to video (no guarantees re such off-site links): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XPCQA19pv7s&feature=related

Many videos happily remain from this '70s supergroup. Another "rare" one graciously posted on YouTube is linked below. It shows off Agnetha's alluring camera presence and her warm, flirtatious (lip-syncing) style. (And yeah; the 2 French dude "hosts" are 2 much....) She conveyed this repeatedly in their on-stage videos, and it seemed natural. Despite professed shyness, etc., the lady shone when the lights came on. She cared about her performance and image, as all ABBA members did. Especially with Agnetha, almost a symbiotic pairing (with the camera), though more benefit may have been on the receiving end.

Link to video: http://www.blogger.com/goog_167646122

2010 update: OK: This video (link) is long gone....Please proceed onward to the next vid., which also demonstrates what is being discussed....Thank you.

And also no doubt an intriguing person: Perhaps a generally introverted personality, but also capable of displaying warmth, passion, sexiness etc. when on stage; which could have also been part of her make-up (?).
Only Agnetha could ever really tell us, and I'd like to ask her such a question (...EASY there...) about her stage persona. Not possible.

Even more sexy flirting from this underrated performer? Try the following from the same 1976 show. I think it's one of the best clips of all - both ladies. (Many to choose from....) Both women "work" the camera and good-looking Frida is nicely expressive. But check out Ms. Camera-Ready Agnetha. Starting off with "the thing" she does for us during at around the 11-12 second mark ...! (A kiss? Almost?) She was undeniably hot. (She herself may be the staunchest "denier" of this.) Whenever she cared to, Agnetha was a "'Camera One' darling"....

2011: OK...^^that nice video^^ has been taken from us by the "suits". Pls. try the following link: (new window) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4Cyqv02ZKOA&fmt=18
(P.S. Yes: Frida's a beauty here too. Maybe a little camera competition going on...?)

Bonus: This YT video (link); done to Ms. "If Tears Were Gold" Fältskog's "Golliwog"(Gulleplutt). ("Somethin's burnin'".... alright. The song's from 1974, and the cover story is that we were trying to break into the German market (and others).) Love the 'buh-bahs' in it at the end. (Seriously....I like it when Agnetha hums and buh-buhs in her songs. ) Older dudes: Make sure you've taken your medication prior to checking out the vid.  And:  More interesting background info. re the writing of this song (Golliwog) is linked here.

More from fantasyland?? A tiny farce re supergirl Agnetha is attempted here (link)

And....a few more glimpses of young Agnetha in performance (some blurry from the time) via YT producer 'qmebtcsamy's' 'Waterloo' mix (link): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bGsg9OSUezk&NR=1&fmt=18

Finally (for brave readers -it's worth it), another underrated ABBA song (informative link) which features intricate harmonies from both fronting ladies, and a magnificent, velvet-voiced Frida.  As noted it may be IS from a Swiss TV special, with a live audience.(YouTube link) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Cd_ZkAiVwzI 
(Here's that entire 1979 concert! Current YT link, new window opens: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qm6wG35yYKc&fmt=18  )

BTW, if you can tear your eyes away from Frida in this video performance, try watching expressive Agnetha in the closer camera shots. (Who wouldn't want to watch both magnetic women....great outfits for them.) As she was want to do at times, Ms. Fältskog literally acts out certain words/phrases in the song. (Pls. recall that ABBA were music video pioneers, several years before MTV, etc.) At other times you may see differing emotions or feelings on that revealing face. (And body/arm movements - some fitting, some distracting.) E.g.: The blonde performer really "hams up" (the pantomime of) her intro vocal, beginning at the 0:15 second mark of the video. (She's "into it"...) Later, a fittingly mournful/forlorn look is visible from Agnetha at around 2:11, on the "Oh what a shame, you really want that girl" line. Like her appropriate "...world is upside down" gesture at around 2:44.

Etc., etc. (This is a subjective view, of course; others may see the performance differently....)
At any rate, seemingly an expressive person (including non-verbally), fascinating to watch - for some - in-performance. She (often) 'displays' an
unusual ability to "get (come) through the (viewing) screen". 
(Interesting side note: Per page 123 of her 1996 As I Am biography, Ms.Fältskog finds it "painful" to (subsequently) watch recorded or live ABBA performances...)

Link to my full blog: http://star4abba.blogspot.com/

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

A break, to compare and contrast: 'Queen of Rock'

 (Updated 2012)

Even the 'retro-fascinated' need a break from generally wholesome pop supergroup ABBA.

'80s "Queen of Rock" Stevie Nicks is a worthy change of pace, while keeping the focus on women stars.

It's an odd YT video to choose as the audio isn't real good. (Band much too loud, Stevie not enough, electronic "hum", etc.) Love the rough, rollicking live sound here anyway, and Stevie's "blown away on stage" thing (in front of a huge crowd no less)....Hilarious band intros, etc.

Messed up or not, she rarely looked better. The too-loudly amplified/recorded musicians are still good, especially Mr. Kunkel. (Link to this video - the sound seems to be getting more distorted over time: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p-2GD-d1Flk)

Bonus: More contemporary Stevie is on display here (link, new window)
A unique (rock/pop) voice (still today), as we all know. Another performer it is almost impossible not to like...

Another: A great one with 'bewitching' Stevie....Plus brilliant use of the backup singers (sometimes incl. Ms. Nicks). Hinted via the percussion at times the (pivotal lyrics) line "You can set your secrets free" echoes throughout the song -- whether it's (actually) sung or not.
(Not the only line to do so...)  :
(YT link) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_Y_fK7Tt9o0

BTW: If anyone is still with me here... Christine McVie has always been the true favorite from Fleetwood Mac.  Such a bluesy-sounding voice... that comes from somewhere down deep. She (also) gets a nice 'ring' to it when "singing up" just a bit.  I.e., more loudly or forcefully. (Like it a little less when Christine once-in-awhile pushed it too much (loud, for her),  in later-1970s Fleetwood Mac, though.) When she stays within herself, a good live singer... "Rounding"  those sung notes - and words - very nicely. (I.e., smoothly singing/finishing. No "edges"  Contrast (a wonderful one): Stevie, often.)

A special voice....another one. Almost seems like honey sometimes. (Make that "sultry honey"(?)...what tha'??)  Talented Christine caught this listener's fancy "way back" in 1972 beginning with the Bare Trees album. (Older Fleetwood Mac.)

There are more prominent examples for Ms. McVie but will link to this one as we get to see flashes of her strikingly light-colored eyes. (In the video. They appear either gray or some combination of gray-blue to me...)

(link, new window) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wWdgTraidlU&fmt=18

Not a favorite Fleetwood Mac lineup, but decent Christine singing live here (link, new window): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1JjQGVtZrE0&fmt=18