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ABBA :: Charts & Sales History

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  • Here's a list of songs that were Abba remakes or samples and made the top 10 in the UK and Germany:

    UK:
    Sweet Dreams - Honey Honey, #10, 1974
    Stars On 45 - Stars On 45 Volume 2, #2, 1981
    Edelweiss - Bring Me Edelweiss, #5, 1989 (samples "SOS")
    Erasure - Abba-Esque EP, #1, 1992
    The Fugees - Rumble In The Jungle, #3, 1997 (samples "The Name Of The Game")
    The Vengaboys - Boom Boom Boom, #1, 1998 (features a sample of "Lay All Your Love On Me")
    The Tamperer featuring Maya - Hammer To The Heart, #6, 1998 (features a sample of "Gimme Gimme Gimme")
    Various Artists (Brit Awards), Thank Abba For The Music- #4, 1999
    Westlife - I Have A Dream, #1, 1999
    Madonna - Hung Up, #1, 2006 (samples "Gimme Gimme Gimme")

    Germany:
    Stars On 45 - Stars On 45 Volume 2, #2, 1981
    Edelweiss - Bring Me Edelweiss, #2, 1988
    Erasure - Abba-Esque EP, #2, 1992
    The Vengaboys - Boom Boom Boom, #6, 1998
    A-Teens - Mamma Mia, #10, 1999
    A-Teens - Super Trouper, #4, 2000
    Madonna - Hung Up, #1, 2006

    I hope I didn't forget any songs!

    Regarding the samples, Benny & Björn are credited as co-writers on "Bring Me Edelweiss", "Rumble In The Jungle", "Boom Boom Boom" and "Hung Up". Don't know about "Hammer To The Heart" though.

    So as writers/ co-writers, Benny & Björn are responsible for 30 UK top 10 singles (19 with Abba, 11 remakes/ samples, 1 from Chess) and 29 German top 10s (21 with Abba, 7 remakes/ samples, 1 from Chess).

    There's a show on German TV channel RTL called "Die ultimative Chartshow". Every episode features the most successful acts or songs of all time on the German chart based on a special theme, for example "The most successful German singers" or "The most successful songs of the 1980s" etc. The show itself is horrible (especially the host and the guests) but Abba always do quite well on their lists.

    In one of the more recent episodes, Benny & Björn were the second most successful pop composers of all time on the German chart, after Nicky Chinn & Mike Chapman. I didn't watch the show so I don't know which criteria they used, it's quite bizarre that Benny & Björn were one place higher than Dieter Bohlen who has written and produced 48 German top 10 hits.

    Here's the link:
    http://www.rtl.de/cms/sendungen/show/di ... nload.html
    My YouTube Channel - The best songs of the 80s, 90s and 2000s

    Comment


    • Below is a video of Sweet Dream's Honey Honey. The female singer was white but had to black-up as she was singing with ablack man. It was frowned on by many (bigots) in the 1970s for black and white folk to mix, especially if there was a hint of romance.

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GTzkP742wlw

      This was the era of the Black and White Minstral show. Happily, we've come along way since then.

      And here's Polly Brown of Sweet Dreams a year later. Her colour changed. She was way ahead of Michael Jackson, lol!

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BLWNGoGRadc

      Comment


      • Originally posted by Lewis18
        How does mjdangerous get 4.5m for the ABBA album...
        He says 2.6m in Europe and 1.9m outside Europe...

        Europe
        Sweden - 575,000
        UK - 200,000
        Italy 125,000
        Finland 25,000

        That's 925,000. It is off the radar in most European countries. No way has it sold about 1.7m in the rest of Europe.

        Outside Europe
        Australia - 600,000
        US - 200,000
        NZ - 100,000

        That's 900,000. Another million in Asia/Africa/Latin America. Possible but unlikely. Not as outrageous as Europe's estimates.

        It does seem that the European figure of 2.6m is a mistake.
        His Abba's estimations are from May 2010.

        I think the reason why some totals are that big is because MJDangerous assumed some big sales for Eastern Europe because it is known Abba were big there.

        But he is going to revise his totals soon.

        This is what he provided me with for Abba when I asked him:

        Abba: 190,000,000
        Albums – 120,000,000
        Physical Singles – 55,000,000
        Digital downloads – 12,000,000
        Music Videos – 3,000,000

        I was surprised to see Abba with 120 million (instead of 130 plus), so I asked him about it and this is what he replied to me:

        "ABBA estimate is my only one I'm not that much faithful in, so I prefered to put a conservative figure until I review their figures, especially since we have tons of new informations/ways of calculations, mostly for European countries".

        So in a future update he may lower the sales of Abba, but perhaps increase others (like Gold and other compilations) and the results will be about the same.

        Comment


        • Not long ago he gave 104m albums, this then jumped to almost 130m, now down to 120m.

          I think 'ABBA' should be on 2.5m-ish and The Visitors on about 3.5m-ish not 4.5 or 4.8m. He may over-estimate catalogue sales of some albums too...

          Comment


          • Some figures estimated by MJ Dangerous are a little bit too high (for example German singles sales for Abba and other acts), but his numbers are very interesting and quite unique. I don't know anyone on this planet who has done such extensive estimations of record sales.
            My YouTube Channel - The best songs of the 80s, 90s and 2000s

            Comment


            • I notice mjdangerous has 1,200,000 for the compilation SOS - Best Of in his worldwide section. In the Japan section it is 800,000,
              400,000 in other countries? I thought it was just released in Japan?

              His album figures (120m) and singles (55m) seem about right. I wouldn't have a clue about downloads and music videos sales. How do you estimate download sales from songs that don't chart? I would never have guessed ABBA's UK downloas sales - totals or individual songs. What are US download sales now? Or other countries?

              I don't follow music video charts - and have never done so. 3m doesn't seem a lot - but then why buy when you get them free on Youtube. If it's 3m globally, I'd expect about 500,000 in UK. About 1 in 6 ABBA albums and singles seem to come from the UK...

              Comment


              • Originally posted by Lewis18
                I notice mjdangerous has 1,200,000 for the compilation SOS - Best Of in his worldwide section. In the Japan section it is 800,000,
                400,000 in other countries? I thought it was just released in Japan?
                I guess this is a mistake. As far as I know, "SOS - Best Of" was only released in Japan, not even in other Asian countries like South Korea.
                My YouTube Channel - The best songs of the 80s, 90s and 2000s

                Comment


                • Gold - on youtube
                  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=djCMOnEbty4

                  Comment


                  • There's about a fifth of the songs on THE ESSENTIAL COLLECTION that shouldn't be, IMO.

                    Here's the ones I think should be excluded,and their replacements.


                    1. He is Your Brother (Nina Pretty Ballerina)
                    2. Love Isn't Easy (Hasta Manana)
                    3. So Long (I've Been Waiting For You)
                    4. That's Me (When I Kissed the Teacher)

                    5. AngelEyes (As Good as New)
                    6. Happy New Year (Our Last Summer)
                    7. The Visitors (Slipping Through My Fingers)
                    8. Under Attack (Just Like That)

                    - I actually like Happy New Year but it doesn't belong on an album, even Super Trouper. It is not a song for 51 weeks of the year!


                    What do others think??? There's also a few songs I don't like but have to be included
                    - People Need Love
                    - I Do I Do I Do
                    - Thankyou for The Music
                    - Voulez Vous
                    - I Have a Dream
                    - Super Trouper

                    13 songs - third of the album, I don't like :(

                    Comment


                    • Originally posted by Lewis18
                      I notice mjdangerous has 1,200,000 for the compilation SOS - Best Of in his worldwide section. In the Japan section it is 800,000,
                      400,000 in other countries? I thought it was just released in Japan?

                      His album figures (120m) and singles (55m) seem about right. I wouldn't have a clue about downloads and music videos sales. How do you estimate download sales from songs that don't chart? I would never have guessed ABBA's UK downloas sales - totals or individual songs. What are US download sales now? Or other countries?

                      I don't follow music video charts - and have never done so. 3m doesn't seem a lot - but then why buy when you get them free on Youtube. If it's 3m globally, I'd expect about 500,000 in UK. About 1 in 6 ABBA albums and singles seem to come from the UK...
                      This was provided by the column Ask Billboard in July 2008, after Mamma Mia premiered:

                      "As for Abba's overall album sales, the act has sold 6.7 million albums in the U.S. since Nielsen SoundScan began tracking data in 1991. Additionally, Abba has sold 1.4 million digital track downloads. It's biggest download seller is (pretend to be shocked) 'Dancing Queen' with 456,000 downloads".

                      By then, they had sold 1,400,000 digital downloads in the USA with 456,000 coming from Dancing Queen (32,5%).

                      Half a year later, their seminal track had jumped to 597,000.

                      It would be interesting to know what Dancing Queen sold to this date.

                      If I had to estimate, I would say around 1,250,000 sales, being conservative.

                      Assuming it represents a similar percentage as in July 2008, that would mean Abba probably sold a bit less than than 4,000,000 in the United States.

                      In the UK they sold more than 1,000,000 downloads. Probably 1,200,000. With Great Britain being the strongest territory for the digital market in Europe (even more when Abba reached its peak, in terms of downloads sales, in 2008), I pressume they sold more than 2,000,000 in the continent.

                      I know it is too much of an assumption.

                      I can tell you that, based on the worldwide figures that have been revealed, USA sales generally represents about 60% of an act's tally, but I'm sure it is a bit less in the case of Abba knowing that country isn't their best one.

                      The funny thing is MJDangerous estimated that Pink Floyd and Abba sold a similar amount of tracks. It is curious because the former were never known for selling songs. They are the ultimate straightforward album band. However, they have very likely sold around 12,000,000 worldwide indeed, considering they sold about 7,000,000 in the USA alone. Very surprising.

                      As for music videos, I personally doubt Abba sold more than MJDangerous estimated above.

                      In Germany, they are certified for sales of 200,000 music videos, all of them in the DVD era. They are one of the most successful video acts. I personally think they sold 350,000 to 400,000 music videos overall.

                      Their USA chart histories aren't too impressive.

                      I think that 3,000,000 is about fine. Maybe it looks a bit high, but I can say that after going through other acts, it is surprising what you may find at the end.

                      Comment


                      • HUR - are you saying ABBA sold less than 12 million downloads, globally? It seems so.

                        You say (admittedly only guestimates)
                        US - 4,000,000
                        Europe - 2,000,0000

                        These areas MUST account for more than 50% of download sales.

                        If they've sold 1.2m downloads in the UK, surely their total European sales would be at least 3m?

                        Comment


                        • No, I think it is fine. Remember that it is a guess, so if they sold (for example) 10,000,000 or 11,000,000 in reality, it would still be fine; it is impossible to find a 100% of accuracy. Compared to other acts, I expect their USA sales to represent a relatively smaller proportion.

                          And you are right, in Europe it could be as many as 3,000,000 although the UK has a big hegemony over the rest of the continent.

                          Japanese downloads are enormous. Not sure what Abba sold, I think they had some certifications.

                          Comment


                          • The excellent ABBA Worldwide Chart Lists site has been upadted today.
                            http://home.zipworld.com.au/~callisto/abba.html

                            Comment


                            • Originally posted by Lewis18
                              The excellent ABBA Worldwide Chart Lists site has been upadted today.
                              http://home.zipworld.com.au/~callisto/updates.html
                              Great, indeed, but, unfortunately, no updates from RPM Canadian charts for ABBA women solo and Chess-related stuff.

                              By the way, I wonder if anyone wants - or, more appropriately, has time (I don't) - to do an analysis of available (ABBA contemporary) Danish charts and come up with a detailed table of ABBA (incl. perhaps Hep Stars and Hootenanny Singers and girls' solo) chart positions in Denmark from what is available.
                              That info could also be sent to Worldwide Chart Lists site, I think.

                              http://danskehitlister.dk/
                              http://www.danpop.dk/

                              Additional ABBA Danish chart info (The Winner Takes It All, The Day Before You Came, etc) also can be found on this discussion page
                              http://danishcharts.com/forum.asp?todo= ... d&id=12186

                              And some more recent post-ABBA info (if needed)
                              http://top20.dk/home

                              Comment


                              • Here's ABBA's Danish chart info u until March 1977
                                http://danskehitlister.dk/?artist_id=660&funktion_id=1

                                Comment


                                • Originally posted by Lewis18
                                  I don't think there were Danish charts when ABBA were around. The only ABBA chart entry is for Happy New Year in 2008.

                                  http://danishcharts.com/search.asp?search=ABBA&cat=s

                                  I'm sure "Abbaexpert" (nice, modest name) you should have known that...

                                  I would imagine album charts only came into being in the late 1990s.
                                  http://home.zipworld.com.au/~callisto/others.html

                                  So nice of you to disrupt your busy schedule by posting in here.....
                                  Before accusing me of misinformation, you should've at least looked at the links I have provided.
                                  And secondly, you should've known that there WERE Danish charts at the time when ABBA were around since even a casual look at Billboard Hits of the World charts of that time would tell you that.
                                  The links I have posted here do present information about the source of these charts.

                                  And what is that name - Lewis18 - anyway?

                                  Comment


                                  • I don't know where you got that quote from....


                                    I posted information as requested. If you have time to post comments, perhaps you have time to find out information yourself!

                                    I don't expect a 'thank you' from you, 'Abbaexpert'.

                                    Comment


                                    • Originally posted by Lewis18
                                      I don't know where you got that quote from....
                                      I posted information as requested. If you have time to post comments, perhaps you have time to find out information yourself!
                                      I don't expect a 'thank you' from you, 'Abbaexpert'.
                                      Wow, this is becoming ridiculous...
                                      Are you seriously denying that you had replied to my first post about Danish charts with that tirade that I had quoted??
                                      What you really did was that you obviously had a look at the links that I posted BUT AFTER you accused me of misinformation, and then just went ahead and edited your post.

                                      And then you even have the nerve to write something like "I don't expect a 'thank you' from you, 'Abbaexpert'"?
                                      Just be a man and admit your mistake...

                                      Comment


                                      • Look at sequence of events...

                                        Abbaexpert quoted my post about the worldwide chart list and requested info on Danish charts

                                        I replied with some info..the post is unedited

                                        Abbaexpert replied with a made-up quote.

                                        I note Abbaexpert says he's too busy to find information...but not too busy to make a nuisance.

                                        In future I will 'scoll down' his posts.

                                        Comment


                                        • Originally posted by MrX
                                          Look, it's easy to make a fake quote and pretend somebody said something!!

                                          Comment


                                          • You really think that you can that easily get away with your bizarre denials?
                                            I can't imagine why can't you just admit what you did. It's just too obvious even for those who did not see your message before you edited it.
                                            I also can't beleive that you are able - just like that! - to accuse me of "making up" the quote from your post! What kind of person are you?

                                            Especially how you conveniently "edited" the previous message (about Worldwide Charts List), knowing that the editing note would appear only in that one and not in the one that I refer to since it was the last post in the topic.

                                            Funny that you probably edited it right before I posted mine with your quote, since I saw your edited version right after I posted my reply. Otherwise the editing note would've appeared in your post.

                                            I am done with this issue in this topic and will be discussing it with the moderators.

                                            Comment


                                            • Troll Alert! Abbaexpert posting again....

                                              Comment


                                              • Now now play nicely boys this is site where we all should be respectful of each other.

                                                I am glad that little by little we are getting all the Abba chart info for Denmark.

                                                Abba Expert - I put on this site (about 15 pages ago) the info I have for Denmark. Abba were really big in this country as you can see:

                                                Singles -

                                                1973 - Ring ring - number 1 (1 week).
                                                1973- Love isn't easy - number 21
                                                1974 - Waterloo - number 1 (2 weeks).
                                                1974 - Ring ring (remix) number 3.
                                                1974 - Honey Honey - number 10
                                                1975 - So long - Number 8
                                                1975 - I do x 5 - number 4
                                                1975 - SOS - number 7
                                                1976 - Fernando - number 2
                                                1976 - Dancing queen - number 1 (8 weeks)
                                                1976 - Money x 3 - number 9
                                                the information after this is patchy for example I do not know if Knowing me knowing you was realeased in Denmark. The other infortion I have is as follows:
                                                1978 - Summer night city - number 1
                                                1979 - Chiquitita - number 1
                                                1979 - Gimme x 3 - number 1

                                                As for thier Lp's I have the following:

                                                1973-Ring Ring - Number 3 (HOORAY)
                                                1974-Waterloo - number 2
                                                1975-Abba - Number 1 (5 weeks)
                                                1976-Greatest hits - number 1 (6 weeks)
                                                1976 - Arrival - number 1 (21 weeks +) said to have sold a massive 225,000
                                                I love pop music -

                                                Comment


                                                • We also know that the WTIA also got to at least number three in the Danish charts and that TDBYC was a number three hit.

                                                  It seems that Denmark was loyal to Abba until their very last recordings.

                                                  As is known some countries brought Abba singles and LP's that charted highly for all their time as an active group.
                                                  I love pop music -

                                                  Comment


                                                  • Interesting information regarding Denmark!

                                                    Here's the Danish chart data from the past 10 years (taken from www.danishcharts.com):

                                                    "The Definitive Collection" 2004 Peak: 3 / weeks: 10
                                                    "The Complete Studio Recordings" 2006 Peak: 6 / weeks: 19
                                                    "The Albums" 2008 Peak: 10 / weeks: 12
                                                    "Happy New Year" Single 2008 Peak: 14 / weeks: 5
                                                    "Gold Greatest Hits" 2012 Peak: 28 / weeks: 1
                                                    "18 Hits" 2008 Peak: 39 / weeks: 1
                                                    My YouTube Channel - The best songs of the 80s, 90s and 2000s

                                                    Comment

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