It seems that the planets are aligning for ABBA fans. Not only is Mamma Mia: Here We Go Again! smashing it at the box office, ABBA (one of the world’s best-selling pop bands, and whose songs the musical films are based around) will be releasing some new music for the first time in 35 years this December.
The sequel to Mamma Mia, ten years after the original film’s release, is once again packed full of ABBA songs and is certainly set to be another fan favourite, judging by early reviews on Rotten Tomatoes.
The success of Mia! Here We Go Again is set to cap yet another triumphant year for the legendary Swedish pop group.
It’s amazing to think that the group was formed by Agnetha, Bjorn, Benny and Anni-Frid almost half a century ago. Not only will we be hearing even more of their famous tunes on our favourite radio stations thanks to the smash-hit movie, the group have announced the release of two original songs this year. One will be titled ‘I Still Have Faith In You’ and will feature in a BBC TV special.
To celebrate ABBA mania, our friends at BetWay have put together an infographic examining the group’s songs and albums over the last five decades.
BetWay’s infographic looks into the 25 singles and 10 albums they released between 1972 and 1983, plus their career-spanning greatest hits album in 1992.
Did you know that ABBA achieved nine No. 1 singles, which s the most of any non-British group ever.
Their debut single, Waterloo, topped the charts after being Sweden’s winning entry in the 1974 Eurovision Song Contest.
Dancing Queen is the group’s best-selling single, spending six weeks at Number One in the UK. It sold more than one million copies. The song also topped the charts worldwide, becoming their only Number One in the US.
Only the most hardcore of ABBA fans will know that the group released a total of 11 albums between 1974 and 1983. This included seven studio albums, with four of them being compilation albums. Eight of their albums reached Number One in the UK charts.
In 1992 they released Gold – Greatest Hits, which became their best-selling album ever.
In fact, Gold is also the UK’s second-biggest selling album of all time (wow!), having sold more than 5.3m copies. Over 3.5m of those are CD sales, which makes it the UK’s best-selling CD of all time (the best selling album of all time in the UK was Queen’s Greatest Hits, in case you were wondering).
Who sang the songs?
It’s not a competition… is it? Agnetha sang lead vocals on nine of ABBA’s 25 singles, the most of any member. However, only one of those songs (The Winner Takes It All) reached Number One.
It’s not all bad news for Agnetha though. She teamed up with Anni-Frid to share lead vocals on eight singles. An astonishing five of those were Number One hits, including the huge Dancing Queen.
Anni-Frid sang lead vocals on just five ABBA singles. However, three of them – Knowing Me, Knowing You, Super Trouper and Fernando – hit the top spot in the charts. They also happen to be the band’s second, third and fourth biggest-selling singles.
Benny and Bjorn co-wrote every ABBA single, but only sang lead vocals on one song; the non-album single Summer Night City. Bjorn sang lead vocals on Does Your Mother Know.
The winning subject matter
BetWay’s ABBA infographic shows us which subject matter was most successful for the group. No prizes for guessing the most popular subject:
Love: Nine of ABBA’s songs are about Love. Five of those Love songs went to number one. These included Waterloo, Mamma Mia, The Name of the Game, Take a Chance on Me and Super Trouper (the group’s final chart-topper).
Lust: If it’s not Love the group are singing about, it’s Lust. Although one of those reached top spot, Voulez-Vous and Gimme, Gimme, Gimme both peaked at number three in the charts.
Heartbreak: Oh dear, after Love and Lust comes Heartbreak. Three ABBA singles are about heartbreak, including The Winner Takes It All, which was voted ‘Britain’s Favourite Break-Up Song’ in 2006.
Loneliness (2), Friendship (2), Music (2), Money and Hope make up the rest of ABBA’s song subjects.
ABBA mania continues
ABBA’s return to the public eye (not that their music has ever gone away) has resulted in Betway seeing plenty of punters placing money on a famous reunion, a Christmas Number One and even a Glastonbury headline set.
Betway’s Alan Alger told us “ABBA’s staying power speaks for itself and, with the second Mamma Mia! movie currently in cinemas, there hasn’t been a better time for the group to reunite,”
“It seems like a good time for punters to take a chance on 2018 being the year they get back together and, at 7/4, the winner really could take it all.
“If the comeback does happen, we are 16/1 for them to be top of the UK charts at Christmas, while they are 25/1 to headline next year’s Glastonbury.”
Featured image by Danny15 [CC BY-SA 3.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], from Wikimedia Commons