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Voulez-Vous (song)

“Voulez-Vous” (pronounced: [vule vu]; French for “Do you want?”) is a disco track by Swedish group ABBA, written and composed by Benny Andersson and Björn Ulvaeus (under the working title “Amerika”). Agnetha Fältskog and Anni-Frid Lyngstad shared the lead vocals.

The song is the second track on the group’s 1979 album of the same name. In the UK and Ireland, “Voulez-Vous” was released as a double A-side with “Angeleyes” (“Angeleyes” was the dominant A-side); nearly everywhere else, “Voulez-Vous” was a single A-side. The song also features on the Gold: Greatest Hits album, first as a 4:21 edited version when the compilation was first released in 1992 and then in its full 5:09 version from 1999 onwards. “Angeleyes” is featured on the More Gold: More Hits compilation. “Voulez-Vous” was re-released as a single in 1992 to promote Gold: Greatest Hits.

“Voulez-Vous” is also the only ABBA song to have been officially released as an extended dance remix — albeit only as a promo. The 6:07 version of the track, released as a double A-side 12″ single by Atlantic Records in the United States in 1979, was included as a bonus track on the 2001 compilation The Definitive Collection.

A songwriting trip to the Bahamas saw the birth of this melody, and the proximity to Miami made it convenient to recording the backing track at Criteria Studios with members of the disco group Foxy. Criteria Studios is where The Bee Gees made their disco-era records. “Voulez-Vous” is the only ABBA song to be recorded outside of Sweden, not including live recordings.

Upside Down (A- Teens song)

“Upside Down” (Bouncing off the Ceiling (Upside Down) outside Europe) was A-Teens’ first single from their second album Teen Spirit. After the intense promotion in the United States in August 2000 the band went back to studio to start working on their second album. The song was first announced at the Viva Music Awards in September 2000. It was the first time they released an original song and not a cover, and it was produced by the hit makers Grizzly and Tysper.

The single reached Platinum on its 3rd week of release[1] in their homeland and by early 2001, “Upside Down” had sold over 120,000 copies in Sweden earning a 2x Platinum Certification[2]

“Upside Down” had a name change in the United States and Canada to “Bouncing Off The Ceiling (Upside Down)”. The song reached number 93 on the Billboard Hot 100 while the physical single reached number 12 on the Billboard Hot 100 Single Sales Chart.[3]

“Upside Down” became the band’s biggest hit in the UK, selling 3,711 copies on its first day[4] peaking at number-ten by the end of the week. The song received 8/10 Stars on UK Yahoo Music Reviews [5]

This song became the A-Teens’ biggest hit to date, as well as their signature song.[citation needed]

A DVD single of the song was released in the U.S. in February 2001 to coincide with both the single’s release and Teen Spirit’s release, and contains the music videos for both the title track and Mamma Mia from The ABBA Generation. The U.S. CD single itself includes the title track, Super Trouper (also from The ABBA Generation) as a bonus song, the music video for the title track, and a collectible poster that features a calendar for the first 6 months of 2001.

The Name of the Game (ABBA song)

“The Name of the Game” is a 1977 song by Swedish pop group ABBA, and was released as the first single from the group’s fifth studio album, ABBA: The Album. It became a UK number one, topping the UK Singles Chart for four weeks in November 1977.[1]

“The Name of the Game”, first called “A Bit of Myself”, was the first song to be recorded for ABBA’s fifth studio album, following the band’s European and Australian tour. It was their most complex composition yet – with Agnetha Fältskog and Anni-Frid Lyngstad sharing the lead vocals but with solo passages from both women – and contained the influences of the laid-back California sound of the day.[citation needed]

The opening riff on bass and synthesizer is inspired by Stevie Wonder’s “I Wish” from the 1976 album Songs in the Key of Life, and both Andersson and Ulvaeus have acknowledged being inspired by Wonder’s music during this part of ABBA’s career.[citation needed]

A preliminary version of “The Name of the Game” was worked into the 1977 feature film ABBA: The Movie, for which it was written. When it was eventually finished, it was released as the lead single from ABBA: The Album in October 1977. Originally, another track entitled “Hole in Your Soul” was intended for release, but those plans were soon shelved. “The Name of the Game” was released with a live version of “I Wonder (Departure)” as the B-side. This B-side was one of several songs written for the mini-musical The Girl With The Golden Hair, written by Ulvaeus and Andersson and originally performed by ABBA on their 1977 world tour. The recording used on the “The Name of the Game” single was recorded at Sydney Showground, Sydney, Australia on 3 or 4 March 1977. A studio recorded version of the song was included on ABBA: The Album.

“The Name of The Game” also marks the last time Stig Anderson helped with the lyrics of a single.

The Letter (The Box Tops song)

“The Letter” is a popular song, written and composed by Wayne Carson Thompson, which was a US #1 hit in 1967 for the Box Tops.

Wayne Carson (sometimes known as Wayne Carson Thompson) wrote and composed “The Letter” after his father, who performed as Shorty Thompson in country group the Tall Timber Trio, and also dabbled in songwriting, suggested the opening line, “Give me a ticket for an aeroplane.” Carson wrote and composed the song, of which he then sent a demo tape to Chips Moman, who agreed to record the song with a new band.[2]

The track was recorded at American Sound Studio in Memphis in a session produced by Dan Penn. Previously a musician and engineer at FAME Studios, Penn had been hired as production assistant by American Sound’s owner, Chips Moman, whom Penn felt was shutting him out as a collaborator. Penn recalls: “Finally, I just told [Moman]…’Look, we can’t produce together…I think I can produce records [alone]…But I do need somebody to cut. Give me the worst one you got.'” Moman suggested Penn record a local five-man outfit who had been pitched to him by disc jockey Roy Mack (Penn – “Chips was just graspin’. He’d never heard [the group]”) and also passed on to Penn a demo tape of songs cut by his friend, Wayne Carson Thompson, which included “The Letter.” Penn met with some of the members of the group–to which the name “The Box Tops” was eventually given– “and told them to pick anything they wanted from this tape [by Thompson], but make sure that we do ‘The Letter'” which Penn considered the one outstanding song.

Take a Chance on Me

“Take a Chance on Me” is a song by the Swedish pop group ABBA. It was released in January 1978 as the second single from their fifth studio album ABBA: The Album. The song has been featured on a number of ABBA compilations such as Gold: Greatest Hits.

The working title of “Take a Chance on Me” was “Billy Boy”. Written and recorded in 1977 by Benny Andersson and Björn Ulvaeus, it opens as a cold intro and was sung by Agnetha Fältskog and Anni-Frid Lyngstad, with Fältskog delivering the solo passages. It has a constant uptempo throughout the entire recording. It was one of ABBA’s first singles in which their manager Stig Anderson did not lend a hand in writing the lyrics, firmly establishing Andersson and Ulvaeus as a songwriting partnership.

The song’s origins sprang from Ulvaeus, whose hobby was running. While running, he would sing a “tck-a-ch”-style rhythm to himself over and over again, which then evolved into “take-a-chance” and the eventual lyrics.[1] The song’s B-side was “I’m a Marionette”, which, like “Thank You for the Music” and “I Wonder (Departure)” (the B-side to their previous single, “The Name of the Game”), was intended to be part of a mini-musical entitled The Girl with the Golden Hair that Andersson and Ulvaeus had planned, but ultimately shelved.

Super Trouper (song)

“Super Trouper” is a hit single for Swedish pop group ABBA, and was the title track from their 1980 studio album Super Trouper, written by Benny Andersson and Björn Ulvaeus. The song, with lead vocals by Anni-Frid Lyngstad, was the last to be written and recorded for this album and it replaced the track “Put On Your White Sombrero”. The working title of this song was “Blinka Lilla Stjärna”. [2] “Super Trouper” is included on the Gold: Greatest Hits compilation, as well as in the Mamma Mia! musical.

The name “Super Trouper” referred to the spotlights used in stadium concerts.

Sugar Rush (A-Teens song)

Sugar Rush was A-Teens’ third single from their second album Teen Spirit.

The song was released on radio in April 2001 and the video in May 2001 but failed to get the public’s attention around Europe.[citation needed] However, the song was a hit in Latin America[citation needed] and Asia,[citation needed] and the video was often played in North America where it was nominated for “Best Video of the Year” at the Kids Choice Awards in 2001[citation needed] but lost to ‘N Sync’s “Pop”.

The single release had a B-side, “Give it Up” that was later included on the album’s re-issue.

“Sugar Rush” peaked at number 15 in Sweden[citation needed] and number 72 in Germany[citation needed] becoming (at that time) the lowest chart positions for the A-Teens in both countries.[citation needed] Mexican radio embraced the track and it reached number-two on its fifth week in the Top 100,[citation needed] while in Argentina the band scored another Top 20 when it climbed to number 11.[citation needed]

Several remixes of the song were added to dance compilations in Europe, Asia and Latin America.[citation needed]

The song was also recorded by the American pop boy-band Dream Street and was released in July 2001 on their debut album, “Dream Street,” only two months following the radio release of the A*Teens version.

Shame, Shame , Shame (Shirley & Company song)

“Shame, Shame, Shame” is a 1974 hit song written by Sylvia Robinson, performed by American disco band Shirley & Company and released on the Vibration label. The lead singer is Shirley Goodman, the male vocalist is Jesus Alvarez.[1]

The track, with its prominent use of the Bo Diddley beat, was one of the first international disco hits and reached number 12 on the Billboard charts. It also hit number one on the soul singles chart for one week.[2] “Shame, Shame, Shame also went number one on the disco/dance charts for four weeks.[3] It was however the sole success of this one-hit wonder band: the song was first released and the full-length LP Shame, Shame, Shame was recorded subsequently and came out in 1975.[4]

The lead singer Shirley Goodman, was one half of the duo Shirley and Lee who had a mega hit 18 years earlier, in 1956, writing and recording the song “Let The Good Times Roll” for Aladdin Records.

School’s Out (song)

“School’s Out”, also known as “School’s Out for Summer” is a 1972 title track single released on Alice Cooper’s fifth album.

Cooper has said he was inspired to write the song when answering the question, “What’s the greatest three minutes of your life?”. Cooper said: “There’s two times during the year. One is Christmas morning, when you’re just getting ready to open the presents. The greed factor is right there. The next one is the last three minutes of the last day of school when you’re sitting there and it’s like a slow fuse burning. I said, ‘If we can catch that three minutes in a song, it’s going to be so big.'”

Cooper has also said it was inspired by a line from a Bowery Boys movie. On his radio show, “Nights with Alice Cooper”, he joked that the main riff of the song was inspired by a song by Miles Davis.[1] Cooper admitted that guitarist Glen Buxton was the one who created the song’s opening riff.

The lyrics of “School’s Out” indicate that not only is the school year ended for summer vacation, but ended forever, and that the school itself has been blown up. It incorporates the childhood rhyme, “No more pencils, no more books, no more teachers’ dirty looks” into its lyrics. It also featured children contributing some of the vocals. “Innocence” in the lyric “…and we got no innocence” is frequently changed in concert to “intelligence” and sometimes replaced with “etiquette.” The song appropriately ends with a school bell sound that fades out.

Later performances saw Alice Cooper incorporate parts of the first verse in “Another Brick in the Wall, Part 2”, a song by Pink Floyd (also about school, and produced by Bob Ezrin) into “School’s Out.”

SOS (ABBA song)

“SOS” was the third single from Swedish pop group ABBA’s self-titled 1975 album, their third for Polar Music and their second for Epic and Atlantic. It was released with “Man in the Middle” as the B-side. Agnetha Fältskog, who sang lead, recorded the song in Swedish on her 1975 solo album Elva kvinnor i ett hus. “SOS” was ABBA’s first major worldwide hit since “Waterloo”.

“SOS” (working title; “Turn Me On”) was written by Benny Andersson, Björn Ulvaeus and Stig Anderson and was recorded at Glen Studio on 22–23 August 1974. The title itself was coined by Stig, though the lyrics he provided were re-written by Ulvaeus. “SOS” was among the first of three songs recorded for the group’s 1975 album, ABBA.

The song is unique among pop songs of the period, opening with unaccompanied classical keyboard in a subdued D-minor key. Unlike most ABBA tracks that preceded it, the vocal begins with an emotional solo performance by Fältskog. The descending chords and ominous Minimoog synthesizer melody line of the introduction set the tone for Fältskog’s vocals, sounding almost as if she were breaking down in tears. The song then transitions to a rock chorus in a major key, dominated by a distorted electric guitar and full vocals.

Despite the song’s catchiness, it was passed over as the lead single from the album; the track “So Long” was chosen instead. “So Long” was chosen primarily because it had the same uptempo beat as their 1974 hit single, “Waterloo”.

Lyricist Ulvaeus has said that, after three years of trying to figure out what style would define them, ABBA found its identity as a pop group with the release of “SOS”.[1]

The song was the subject of one of the first pioneering music videos produced by director Lasse Hallström for the band. Much of the video is filmed from an overhead camera, as if from a tower or lighthouse, with the bandmates’ faces sometimes distorted, as though shot through a prism.[2]

During the band’s first visit to the United States, ABBA performed “SOS” on the long-running television program American Bandstand on November 15, 1975.[3]

ABBA performs the song live in the concert film ABBA: The Movie, Hallström’s first English-language feature film, filmed during the band’s tour of Australia in 1977.

ABBA performed the song on its 1979 tour of Europe and North America. While the track does not appear on the filmed record of that tour—released on DVD as “ABBA in Concert”—it is featured on the 2014 audio release, Live at Wembley Arena. For the first time on that tour, vocalists Fältskog and Lyngstad traded the line “when you’re gone” responsively at the song’s climax. Actors Meryl Streep and Pierce Brosnan would mimic the approach in recording “SOS” for the soundtrack of the film version of Mamma Mia! in 2008.

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