Labor Day weekend and I would be lying if I would say that I don't do ABBA marathon--I do. I would be lying if I would say that ABBA's reunion didn't make me happy, it did. As it did countless millions of people around the world. So, here I am, listening to ABBA's immortal music and I will let people know why this is the greatest reunion in music history and why ABBA matters, because a whole music industry is now scrambling trying not to release their new shitty "music" the day ABBA's Voyage is released.
You wouldn’t have thought there’s much connecting prog-rock deviants Led Zeppelin to sugary Scandi pop crew ABBA, but here’s one: Zep recorded tracks for their ‘In Through The Out Door’ album in the ABBA’s Polar Studios. Legend has it ABBA’s Benny and Bjorn took Robert Plant on a night out to a nearby sex club after meeting at the Stockholm recording facility.
I don't know since when Zeppelin is "prog-rock" band, but surely ABBA and Zeps had their share of shenanigans, not to mention the fact that late legendary Lemmy of Motorhead didn't mince his words:
And if you didn't know Deep Purple and ABBA had a very deep connection.
My dear friend Staffan Eriksson reminded me yesterday of the fact that ABBA Frida (Anni-Frid Lyngstad) had worked with Jon Lord on his wonderful 2004 solo album “Beyond The Notes”. True. They were friends and Frida had asked Jon if he could write a song for her (this is all explained by Jon in the inner notes of this album). In February 2004 he has the idea and he presents it to Frida in Switzerland. She likes it, and the title, and Sam Brown puts down lyrics to this little masterpiece called “The Sun Will Shine Again”. Later, as “Beyond The Notes” sees release by EMI Frida and Jon performs the song live together on television shows in the UK and Germany (there are videos of at least two out of five that we are aware of on YouTube) to great acclaim. As far as collaborations between the Deep Purple & ABBA spheres, this is the big one. We know that Ritchie Blackmore is a big fan of ABBA (he has talked about them in several interviews) and if memory serves me right he may have met people from ABBA around the time of the “Down To Earth” album in Stockholm. Nothing came out of that though.
Always keep in mind that ABBA is not just a pop, but rock royalty. Let me remind you what they did with hard-rock, prog-rock and classics: