Questions & answers

October 2019

Does the song 'Under Attack' have parts that were already used in earlier songs?

Yair, Israel



It does indeed. The melody of the first lines of the verse "Don't know how to take it / don't know where to go / my resistance running low" were originally a guitar riff in the introduction of 'Just Like That', recorded in May 1982. The final part of the verse "it's just like taking candy from a baby / and I think I must be" is a melody that was originally in the unreleased song 'Rubber Ball Man' ("I wish there was a way that I could show you / how your songs set me free"), recorded in August 1979. Both songs can be heard in part in the 'ABBA Undeleted' medley on the 1994 box set Thank You For The Music.


On several old ABBA sites (for example, datABBAse) "official" 1999 DVDs for ABBA Gold and More ABBA Gold are listed (with the exact same content as the original VHS versions), with More ABBA Gold supposedly having clips of 'Ring Ring', 'So Long' and 'Tiger' (presembly pulled from The Movie) as extra clips. Of course, they look suspicious as no one seems to own them and the covers have a Polydor logo rather than a Polygram Video logo. Is there any more info on them? 

Aaron, Australia



DVD versions of ABBA Gold and More ABBA Gold were semi-officially released in Brazil in 2001, without approval from ABBA or PolyGram's head office. The contents are identical to the VHS tapes releasd in 1992 and 1993, and probably mastered from the same source. Brazil seems to have somewhat lax copyright laws - there have been several "official" DVD releases of televsion performances released in Brazil, most of which look like they were taped from Eurpoean TV broadcasts. I haven't seen these two Gold DVDs, but I believe the contents were probably copied from the earlier VHS releases.
There is another More ABBA Gold DVD of unknown origin, apparently released in 1999. This one has three additional tracks, 'Ring Ring' (presumably the 1974 promotional clip), 'So Long' (presumably from a TV performance) and 'Tiger' (presumably from the 1976 TV special ABBA-dabba-doo!!). Unfortunately, I don't know anything about that one.

Thanks Erik Liebstaedter for additional information. Updated 6 December 2019.


is it FRIDA singing backing in the song 'Nana' by ARNE LAMBERTH in 1969?

Thank you & best wishes
Wolfgang, Germany



The record credits "Sven-Olaf Walldoffs kör och orkester" (choir and orchestra). There are moments when a voice that sounds like Frida's can be heard, but it's unlikely that it's her. As far as I can figure, this single was released by Polar Music in February or March 1969. Benny and Frida first met in March that year, and the first time they recorded together was in September, when Benny produced Frida's single 'Peter Pan', a Benny and Björn composition. With Frida being an EMI recording artist, with half a dozen singles issued in her name, and no prior connection to Polar, I can't see her being part of Walldoff's choir for this recording.


According to ABBAMania Australia, RCA Victor once had plans to issue 'Hole In Your Soul' as the lead single from The Album (since they didn't like 'The Name Of The Game', and the B-side was going to be retained), but Polar didn't like that idea so they issued 'The Name Of The Game' as with the rest of the world. The proof sleeve shown uses a black-coloured background and a black "ABBA" strip (as opposed to blue) and features a typo: "Depature". It would've actually made an impact on the ABBA community if it was released with 'Hole In Your Soul' as the A-side, but despite (presembly) being a top 20 hit copies would've been easier to obtain/import. I even heard 'Hole In Your Soul' in the background of a scene of an episode of The Block's 2012 season (which can be found on 9Now). 

Aaron, Australia



Polar Music initially planned to release 'Hole In Your Soul' as the lead single worldwide. Björn and Benny even recorded a message for their international record companies, introducing the single (source: ABBA - The Complete Recording Sessions). There was a change of heart, and 'The Name Of The Game' was eventually selected as the worldwide lead single - possibly because it featured in a major scene of the upcoming ABBA - The Movie.
The single sleeve design shown in the book is probably a fan-made mock-up, but I don't know the source of the image. The telltale signs are the mispelling of 'Departure', the incorrect catalogue number, and the titles are in what looks like the typeface Arial, which was designed in 1982 (source: Wikipedia). RCA Australia did indeed assign a catalogue number for a 'Hole In Your Soul' single, 102997, which would still have had 'I Wonder (Departure)' on the B-side (source: Australian Record Labels), but as far as is known, no records were pressed or sleeves were printed. RCA assigned a new catalogue number, 103006, for 'The Name Of The Game'.


Is the song 'Elaine' based on a true person?

Yair, Israel



It's one song that Björn and Benny have not really discussed. There has been no indication that it's influenced in any way by anyone named Elaine.


Previous Questions & answers    

BACK | HOME | MAIL | Disclaimer

This site uses frames. If you came directly to this page from an external link, welcome to ABBA Omnibus. Please click here to go to the home page.

ABBA Omnibus
ABBA: Song by Song by Ian Cole - pre-order now