Friday, March 26, 2010

The Times: Teaching Abba about gay icons

Enjoy Pete "R" Paphides column while you don't have to stick a quid in a slot, for today he meets Benny Andersson and Björn Ulvaeus. While mainly noteworthy for how the reunion question is answered, the exchange about how gays love Abba is priceless:

[Björn says "]For instance, we never thought in our wildest dreams that we would be gay icons.”

I put it to him that Fältskog might have had something to do with the whole gay icons thing. “But why?” Ulvaeus counters. “She’s a very heterosexual woman. I know.”

That’s not how it works, I tell him. “How does it work, then?” he asks. Well, it all goes back to her not looking happy. You could tell that she was suffering inside, but she carried on in the name of showbiz. Ulvaeus remains unsure: “Hmm. It could be the outfits and the Eurovision.”

And the reunion questions? After thirty years of instant rejection, when Pete raises the idea, he doesn't get hit straight in the face with cold water:
Andersson, by contrast, seems deeper in thought. “Yeah, why not?” he nods. As if working through the logistics, he adds: “I don’t know if the girls sing anything any more. I know Frida [Anni-Frid Lyngstad] was [recently] in the studio.”

If they are hoofing about the stage in white jump suits - waistbands now elasticated - in a year or two, it might well be down to Pete. I'm not sure if he'll be hailed as a hero or treated like the guy who opened Pandora's Box.

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