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March 2023

Which ABBA singles in Australia were issued in picture sleeve format by RCA? Were some just 'limited edition'?
I think I'm right in saying ABBA were briefly signed to the Family label in New Zealand?  What releases were there on that label, when did their licence expire/terminate and did RCA retrospectively release ABBA material where Family previously had the NZ licence (I presume they did e.g. certain songs on The Best Of ABBA perhaps)? 

Gary, UK



Most of the Australian singles from 'Dancing Queen' to 'Under Attack' had picture sleeves. The only ones that didn't were 'Chiquitita (Spanish version)', 'Super Trouper', and 'One Of Us'. Most of the later singles (from 'Summer Night City', when they started to be issued with a folded piece of paper in a plastic sleeve) it seems that only the first pressing had picture sleeves, later pressings were available in generic record company sleeves. I've never seen any of the singles prior to this without their picture sleeve.
UPDATED 2 APRIL: Family Label in New Zealand was a subsidiary of Pye Records. Pye Records also distributed RCA Records at the time. When RCA became a standalone company in New Zealand in 1975, they took the Family catalogue with them,and Family Label ceased in 1976. Family released ABBA's singles from 'People Need Love' in 1973 up to 'I Do, I Do, I Do I Do, I Do' in 1975. Their only known ABBA album was Waterloo in 1974, but there are unconfirmed rumours they also released Ring Ring in 1973. RCA re-released 'I Do, I Do, I Do, I Do, I Do' and Waterloo, and later released several of the earlier singles as had been released by RCA Australia. (Thanks Dean Scapolo for additional information)


Could you write me a release date for the singles 'I Know There's Something Going On' by Frida and 'Head Over Heels' by ABBA?Thanks, 

Matej, Slovakia 



Head Over Heels was released as a single on 19 March 1982. 'I Know There's Something Going On' was released on 17 August 1982.


During the fade-out in 'That's Me', I can hear the lyric "I can't help my ways" during the last few seconds. I don't see this documented anywhere online, because it wasn't listed on the Arrival LP inner sleeve (ABBA's inner sleeves are a common source for ABBA lyrics). I'd like to believe that there was an extra verse in the original mix of the song (likely a repeat of the second half of the third verse) but for the album/single mix, an fade-out was placed early into said verse.

Aaron, Australia



Yes, a second or so of vocals can be heard right as 'That's Me' fades out. It's quite likely that the "I can't help my ways" verse was repeated in the original recording, but faded out for release as the song was probably getting a bit repetitious at that point. The same happened with 'Honey, Honey' - bootleg recordings reveal that the first and second verse were repeated, but the released version fades at the end of the repeated first verse.


Imagine you had the role of deciding the actual ABBA UK single discography running order throughout their active years, what would you select, replace or add?

Simon, UK


Tricky question. I'm not sure I'd change much. Maybe release 'Honey, Honey' in 1974, though it would have competed with Sweet Dreams version (as it did in Australia, where they were lumped together on most charts). Release 'Eagle'/'Thank You For The Music' in 1978, though Epic probably would have flipped the single, and I'm not sure what 'Thank You For The Music' would have done for ABBA's image at that time, when they were trying to be more progressive. Release 'When All Is Said And Done' in around August 1981, though that should have been a worldwide single at that time. Release 'The Visitors' as the A-side in 1982 instead of 'Head Over Heels' in 1982. It might have fared better in a chart alongside the likes of The Human League, Gary Newman, Visage, Ultravox, etc.


I wonder, where are all the ABBA Voyage costumes now. Or do they only exist in digital form?

Kind regards



The ABBA Voyage costumes were created in the real world before they were digitised for the avatars. There are a couple of photos in the Voyage concert programme. I don't know where they are now, but it would be ideal for them to be on display in the foyer of ABBA Arena or at ABBA The Museum.
UPDATED 24 April: The four "phoenix' costumes designed by Manish Arora, worn by the avatars at the opening of the concert, will be on display at the British Music Experience in Liverpool, England from 20 April until 31 August 2023. Costumes by Dolce & Gabbana and Michael Schmidt will be on display at ABBA The Museum in Stockholm at a new ABBA Voyage exhibit from 7 May.


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