Thursday, December 8, 2011

ABBA, my roommate, and the Swedish S.O.S. (Oct. 6, 2008)

Current mood: rejuvenated

In the late 1970s, it was hard not to hear an ABBA song on the radio. The group had more than a dozen Top 40 hits in the U.S. in that time. In my dorm room at SUNY Geneseo, ABBA got even more airplay, since my roommate was not only a fan of the group, but a close relative of one of its members -- first cousin, IIRC, to the blonde woman, Agnetha Fältskog. I never had reason to doubt this story, as they did look amazingly alike, and he even got to visit her backstage at their concert in Montreal in October 1979.

John had a copy of one of ABBA's albums sung in Swedish, the language that most of their early tunes were written in. The song "S.O.S.", in particular, I always liked, but I especially liked hearing the Swedish version, with lead vocal by Cousin Agnetha. The phrasing of the vocals flows much more naturally than the English version we've all heard a million times.

I searched record stores all over for it but never found it. Thanks to YouTube, however, I can finally again hear that recording. Yeah, there's a slide show to accompany it, which is interesting, but all I need is to put on the headphones, close my eyes, and enjoy.

Here's the link.

1 comment:

bus15237 said...

Swedish lyrics here.

English translation of the Swedish lyrics here. Note: These are not the English lyrics you've heard a million times!