I’ll cross the stream — I have a dream

True Abba fans – and I know that one or two read this blog every day – will immediately recognise the line in the title of this post. It’s from ‘I Have a Dream’.

Not, I am relieved to say, that great 1963 speech by Martin Luther King – which ends, Thank God Almighty, we are free at last …

… but rather the 1979 song by Abba, which ends – you guessed it – with I’ll cross the stream – I have a dream …

This absurd contrast is merely a way to draw your attention to the unavoidable fact that my suggestion that ‘Abba’ and ‘bad taste’ are not so much bedfellows as identical twins ranges far more widely than their taste for spandex …

abba spandex 2

… their lyrics, too, often sound so ‘wrong’ that they come almost the whole way back to ‘right’. If you don’t believe me, try singing along to …

It was like shooting a sitting duck
A little small talk, a smile and baby I was stuck …

… from “Lay All Your Love On Me”, or …

My my, at Waterloo Napoleon did surrender
Oh yeah, and I have met my destiny in quite a similar way …

… from the epoch-making “Waterloo” .

abba waterloo gif

I should hasten to add that I was quite the Abba fan myself back then. I played the songs, watched the movie, wore the badges and fancied the blonde to bits. So take my references to their terrible clothes and bad lyrics less as satire than as someone trying – and doubtless failing – to exorcise a few teenage demons.

We all have them. Mine just happen to be dressed in spandex …


Incidentally, if you do some digging you’ll find a claim – commonplace now – that Abba dressed like that in order to avoid tax. How did that work? Well, clothes worn by performers were tax deductible if you could prove that they weren’t also being used for daily wear.

But surely there must have been more tasteful ways of exploiting a tax loophole? Such as …

rianna gif

… or …

bad dress gif

Well, OK, perhaps not.

But seriously, I adore many of Abba’s songs – top tip: treat them like Italian opera, ignore the words and focus on the tunes – and have been to see Mamma Mia in London and absolutely loved it.

So when “Dancing Queen” comes blasting through the Furillen music stream later on today, count me in.

But why hold such an event at Furillen? Because Abba were Swedish, of course …

no shit sherlock

… but it turns out that there is another, more direct connection between Abba and the real  Furillen. I have unearthed a story from 2008 that Abba’s Björn Ulvaeus wanted to set up a recording studio on the island. He is reported to have said …

As I stood and gazed out over the sea to the east …then I knew I was in the right place.

… while the local council appeared to have been enthusiastic about the idea …

This is very concrete evidence … of how attractive Gotland is for creative people.

According to this piece from 2013, the studio’s construction was set to go ahead …

Here, the music will be at the center. One wing is plotted on the sketch of the big studio. There is also a lounge and a place for living in a low building with a view of the ocean toward the sunrise.

… until various planning issues arose that seem to have led to a change of heart in 2014 …

No, I’m probably not interested anymore. That was then, and much water has flowed under the bridge.

The project fell through because of shore protection rules.

In any case, Furillen seems more suited to Agnetha Fältskog – erstwhile object of my own teenage dreams – who retired from public life and became something of a recluse more then two decades ago.

Her ‘disappearance’ generated the usual Garboesque myths and mysteries, but according to the singer herself when she ‘reappeared’ to release an album in 2013, Agnetha merely wanted to spend time with her family and her dogs.

‘A new album’, I hear you cry, ‘what is it like?’.

I don’t know how to put this. Well actually I do.

If you could hear spandex, it would sound exactly like this …

Shall I upload it to Furillen’s music stream?


Enjoy your weekends !

2 Replies to “I’ll cross the stream — I have a dream”

  1. LMAO @ exorcising the teenage demons – I can relate there, Serene 😀

    ABBA’s “Dancing Queen” for me will always be connected to a memory of a girl I adored from afar at a funfair back then wearing pink spandex leggings *yuck*.
    And their “SOS” was the perfect song for teenage lovesickness, when you still thought that life would end after a break up with the “love of your life” whom you had been with for whole 2 weeks!
    “So when you’re near me, darling can’t you hear me? SOS
    The love you gave me, nothing else can save me, SOS
    When you’re gone, how can I even try to go on?
    When you’re gone, though I try how can I carry on?”

    I read the story about Björn Ulvaeus and Furillen as well, and I am rather happy they turned this plan down, to me Furillen does not really seem to be “abbaesque”.

    Anyway, looking forward to the “Janitor in pink spandex” exent tonight 😀

    PS: And sure, upload Agbnetha’s spandex come back 😉

    Liked by 2 people

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