Questions & answers

March 2022

Why did ABBA release the albums Waterloo and ABBA not in the sleeve as the originaly LP; so without the ABBA logo? The ABBA logo didn’t excist by then.




When the ABBA albums were rereleased in 2001, Universal Music Sweden decided to standardise the look, so all eight albums had the same look titles and text, including the ABBA logo. The same design was carried over with the Deluxe Editions released between 2004 and 2014. Other rereleases on CD and vinyl since have reverted to the original album designs.


Back in 1981 Epic Records here in Blighty rereleased 'SOS', 'Knowing Me Knowing You', 'Dancing Queen' and 'Fernando' on the blue Epic label. Only 'Fernando' had a different serial number. The original was SEPC 4036, however the rereleased version had SEPC 5962 – the others had the same. Any thoughts on this?Also, do we know why just these singles were rereleased and not others, and for what purpose?

Simon, UK



'Waterloo' and 'Fernando' had both been rereleased in 1978 with new catalogue numbers, SEPC 5961 and SEPC 5962 respectively, with orange Epic labels. This catalogue number carried over to the 1981 reprint of 'Fernando'. Maybe those four singles were reissued in 1981 following the success of number one singles 'The Winner Takes It All' and 'Super Trouper', to meet demand for those older ABBA classics. Even my Epic Records expert friend Gareth isn't sure.


I had hoped to find the answer as to how come Björn apparently isn't playing anyinstruments on the Voyage album?




Probably by his own choice. Even in the later ABBA years he only played guitar on five songs on Super Trouper, and his only confirmed credit on The Visitors is the mandolin on the introduction of 'One Of Us'. Nor did he play on any of the 1982 recordings.


I noticed on the 79 tour each microphone was coloured coded. Was that so the girls and Björn could tell who's mike was whose? I would have thought they would have been leveled at the mixing desk. Also, there was a radio mike which was used by each member. Not sure why that was needed.

Simon, UK 



Logic would dictate that each member was assigned a colour so that the crew knew which microphone to set up in the right place, set to the right EQ to optimise each voice. But the colours are inconsitent - predominantly, Agnetha's mic is marked with blue tape, Frida's with red, Björn's yellow, though in some shots during the ABBA In Concert special Agnetha has the microphone with red tape and Frida has the blue - sometimes within the same song, showing parts were filmed on different nights (and when Björn is centre stage, such as the opening of 'Summer Night City', he's using Agnetha's blue mic).
Radio microphones were fairly new to stadium concerts at the time, so ABBA might have got one as a gimmick - it also allowed Agnetha, Frida, and Björn to sing from the top of the speaker stacks during 'Gimme! Gimme! Gimme!' and 'Does Your Mother Know' (though in some shots in the special Agnetha and Björn have a corded mic when they're on the speaker stack). I'm not sure if there is one or two radio mics - it can be seen with either red or blue tape, and when Frida is using it, Agnetha has a corded microphone.
There is an excellent article published in Sound International magazine in 1980 about the concert stage set up, but unfortunately I can't find it either in my files (it's there somewhere) or online.


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