Rock over Australia with ABBA

By Holger Brockman & Tony Poulsen - Pix/People 30 September 1976

ABBA’s Australian tour in 1977 may be one of their last – anywhere. Agnetha, Bjorn, Benny and Anni-Frid hate taking the show on the road, and have decided to concentrate on studio work.

“It’s the most anti-social life you can live,” says Bjorn. “The preparations and organisation takes so much time.”

‘It’s even worse for us,” claims Frida. “The boys don’t have to worry constantly about their appearance. We have to look perfect all the time. Really, it all gets to be a terrible strain.”

The projected visit to Australia will certainly be the longest, most strenuous, and most demanding engagement in ABBA’s year. Why, then, are they coming?

“To keep faith with our Australian fans,” they say. And they mean it. There isn’t much money in touring, because of massive expenses along the way, and Bjorn and Anna are always unhappy when they’re parted from Linda, their three-year-old daughter.

Mum and dad (Agnetha and Bjorn respectively) took their little girl along on a trip to the United States recently, and it was a disaster. Obviously, she enjoys herself most at home; it’s not fun when your parents are at everyone’s beck and call.

But Australia is something special. This country is ABBA’s biggest record market outside Scandinavia, so the group’s often-quoted affection for the place and the people is entirely genuine.

It has even been said that ABBA’s records would be more unknown in Britain and also to some extent the U.S. if they hadn’t sold well in Australia. And the cash registers keep ringing on their behalf. Dancing Queen, the latest ABBA hit, racked up so many advance orders here that it achieved gold record status (50,000 copies) before it even hit the shops.

© 1976 Pix People. Thanks to Samuel Inglles