ABBA 1975-1976 GREATEST HITS & BEST OF ABBA
"Can you hear the drums, Fernando?" OR ARE YOU DEAF?
For some reason the first official ABBA compilation ABBA -GREATEST HITS, was not released in some territories
and instead a slightly different album called THE BEST OF ABBA was released ...
ABBA-ABBA's Greatest Hits Original Swedish edition 1975 LP
The Swedes released the original version of ABBA Greatest Hits..which had a cover featuring a green/bluish drawing by Hans
Arnold depicting the members of ABBA as animal life.
In the rest of the world the cover would feature a now famous photoof the two ABBA couples. Benny and Frida- the unmarried
couple were kissing, Agnetha and Björn ,the married couple ,were being distant to each other.
This version was short lived as the later 1976 Swedish edition and most of the international versions would include "Fernando"...
It seems strange that they didn't just include the song to begin with on the album,since "Fernando" was already in the
but perhaps the they didn't want to conflict with Frida's Swedish version of "Fernando" which had just been released on
2. He Is Your Brother
3. Ring Ring
4. Hasta Mañana
5. Nina, Pretty Ballerina
6. Honey, Honey
7. So Long
8. I Do, I Do, I Do, I Do, I Do
9. People Need Love
11. Another Town, Another Train
12. Mamma Mia
13. Dance (While The Music Still Goes On)
ABBA-The Best of ABBA 1975 Australian LP
Though not strictly part of the ABBA canon, BEST OF (the first ABBA compilation album released outside of Sweden) is an
important record in the history of ABBA. BEST OF was released in Australia and a few other territories.
According to the Guinness Book of World
Records BEST OF is the largest selling single disc album ever released in Australia
(at 1.2 milion copies). During it's intial chart run in Australia this album sold 860,000 copies . Australia had a population
of 14 million at the time. This was an unprecedentated rate of market penetration. ABBAmania struck Australia with a vengeance
and would not die down for two years. At one point ABBA would have five songs in the Australian top ten. ABBA fervor was never
this extreme anywhere else, though ABBA had similarly high market penetration in many territories. ABBA was so popular in
Australia that a backlash developed
and after 1977 ABBA would be less popular in Australia than in many other territories.
The cover for THE BEST OF as you can see above, pretty uninspiring...but people loved the music....
The track listing for BEST OF was similar to, but not the same as the nearly concurrent GREATEST HITS album. GREATEST HITS
would be released in late 1975 in Sweden, and thus was officially part of the ABBA canon! Greatest Hits was released in 1976
in much of the world (including the US and Great Britain).
Unlike GREATEST HITS , BEST OF had "Hasta Manana'', but BEST OF didn't have "He Is Your Brother, Another Town, Another
or Fernando'. (The RING RING album was made available in Australia so there was less of a advantage in the having
the RING RING tracks on THE BEST OF album. )
The "Fernando" single hadn't been released when BEST OF came out. So when, "Fernando' was released in 1976, it became ABBA
's biggest selling Australian single. ( It was #1 for sixteen weeks ! )
In Australia ,"Fernando" ended up being placed on the ARRIVAL album. But, most territories would see "Fernando' on the
GREATEST HITS album.
, Side 1: Waterloo; Ring Ring; Honey, Honey; Mamma Mia; People Need Love; Nina, Pretty Ballerina
2: I Do, I Do, I Do, I Do, I Do; SOS; Dance (While The Music Still Goes On); Bang-A-Boomerang; Hasta Mañana; So Long
ABBA-ABBA's Greatest Hits 1976
Released on Cd in a few territories but the original CD issuse was phased out. To be reissued on CD
in April 2006
This album and The BEST OF is where ABBA broke through worldwide on the album charts.
This album would precede to go platinum seemingly everywhere it was released, including the USA.
This was only ABBA's third album released in many parts of the world and it would come only 22 months after their Eurovision
victory with "Waterloo".
Although a GREATEST HITS collection might have seemed premature, with "Fernando" ABBA was already releasing it's eleventh
song that was a hit somewhere.(some songs were hits in different territories.)
In Sweden and a few other territories , the cover featured a green/bluish drawing by Hans Arnold depicting
the members of ABBA as animal life.
In the rest of the world the cover would feature a now famous photo
of the two ABBA
couples. Benny and Frida- the unmarried couple were kissing, Agnetha and Björn ,the married couple ,were being distant to
The USA GREATEST HITS featured five songs from
the RING RING album, three songs from the WATERLOO album
songs drawn from ABBA, though there was some variation between countries in the exact track listing
With the release of ABBA Gold, GREATEST HITS had been phased out, but is scheduled to be reissued on CD in Sweden
and some other territories in April 2006 with the original Swedish cover.
Fernando (Andersson-Anderson-Ulvaeus) 4.05 Recorded August 1975
Lead & Backing Vocals-,Frida Lyngstad,Vocals-Agnetha Faltskog
Guitar & Backing Vocals-Bjorn
Backing Vocals, Keyboards-Benny Andersson
Lead Guitar-Lasse Wellander
Bass Guitar-Rutger Gunnarsson
Percussion -Malando Gassama
Flute -Jan Kling
Strings arranged by S.O. Walldorf.
GREATEST HITS had only one new song
the legendary "Fernando" . "Fernando" was ABBA's first successful
The 1976 single "Fernando' was also included as a bonus track on the original Australian
version of ARRIVAL and on some of the recent remastered editions" of ARRIVAL . It was
ABBA's biggest hit in Australia as well as one of the biggest selling hits ever in Australia. "Fernando" had been originally
written in Swedish for the FRIDA ENSAM album, but a English language version with both Frida & Agnetha singing was prepared
for release by ABBA . The song seems both over exposed and fresh at the same time. The intro and flute still can bring chills
to the spine.
A special flute intro helped made this first ABBA song to exceed four minutes in length.
During the songwriting process, "Fernando "had emerged as a Swedish tango ,but had soon developed a Mexican feel. It
almost sounds like a Spanish act recorded it-and reminds it one vaguely of the Spanish song-"Eres Tu.' The
chorus to the song is probably the ABBA hit that is easiest to sing along to.
The song's back story of Mexican revolutionaries is not based on any actual Mexican revolutionaries but really
is more a conceptual idea thought up by Bjorn of old friends singing about the binds of their past...
The earliest versions of GREATEST HITS in Sweden didn't have "Fernando" ,but
all the later pressings did.