(The sum total of my knowledge of Sweden)
Wikipedia tells me that the producer of ABBA's songs was Bo Michael Tretow. And here I thought it was Benny or Stig. Well, Mr. Tretow, I hope, ended up damn rich, because it was the sound of ABBA that did it. The song lyrics, frankly, were neither here nor there. Most of the time they were "there". But I suppose a lot gets lost in translation.
Whether it's the Beatles or the Beach Boys or...well, those are the two that come to mind...sure some of the lyrics were good; some of them were indecipherable or, to be honest, dumb, but it was the sound that pulled us in.
ABBA had an effervescence. That's not an accident. That's studio magic. I don't like to pull back the curtain - and Agnetha and Anni were nice singers - but somebody (obviously Mr. Tretow) was twisting knobs in the studio and pairing tracks in precisely the right combination to create that sound.
Did you know that ABBA is the second-best selling music group of all time? I didn't. But I do remember that the music of the seventies was...zzzzzzz....oops, sorry - I fell asleep. Which pretty much sums up the seventies.
Country music in the seventies wasn't even a speck on the wall worth swatting. Rock? Well, we had Badfinger, I guess. And we had the Bee Gees. We had John Denver who sang about sunshine on my....zzzzzz.
Luckily we had ABBA:
I didn't know that ABBA had been inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, but they were, in 2010. They deserved it.
More and more, I don't want to be depressed when I listen to music. I want to be uplifted. I don't necessarily care what the words say. I just want the music to soar.