4 And More Music

ABBA for Orchestra

Andersson, Benny / Ulvaeus, Björn

Abba for Orchestra

Davis, Carl / Philharmonia Orchestra

Carl Davis Collection
0845458000246 | CDC 024 | 1CD
An early addict of Eurovision, Carl Davis watched intrigued on that all-important night in Brighton in 1974. He says “Abba’s performance bespoke a confidence that only years of hard work could produce. The combined voices of the two women shone out, sometimes like trumpets and sometimes sad with deep pain. At times the close harmonies resembled Phil Spector’s Wall of Sound. With the advent of downloading, I thought to record a new and ingenious take on them. New arrangements could throw a new light on the beauty, verve and originality of the melodies and striking harmonic progression”. Carl Davis - March 2014

Saturday 6 April 1974. Katie Boyle hosted Eurovision from The Dome in Brighton and Sweden won the Song Contest for the first time with the entry Waterloo, performed by a group called ABBA. The song became a huge international hit and the band went on to become one of the most popular groups of all time.

Forty years later, Davis pays his own personal homage with an Abba for Orchestra recording, recorded at Abbey Road Studios. Says Carl “Given that in our technological age the original tracks are immediately available, I thought it was valid to create purely instrumental versions and reveal the great qualities of the songs of Andersson and Ulvaeus with a large symphony orchestra in tow: the magnificent Philharmonia”.

Carl’s new and ingenious take on them, with arrangements by the masterful Chris Egan, throws a new light on the beauty, verve and the originality of the melodies and striking harmonic progressions of ABBA, the attack of the fast numbers and the dark sensuality and sensitivity of the ballads.

Our love of Abba is unwavering. In April 1999, “Mamma Mia” opened in the West End at the Prince Edward Theatre and it celebrates its 15th London birthday next month. Abba, in all its loveliness, just rolls on and on.
This release is Carl Davis’s third CD dedicated to the phenomena of three important 20th century pop song catalogues: Beatles For Orchestra (2011) and Bond for Orchestra (2012). Carl has always been as much interested in pop music and jazz as the classics and as a conductor has programmed his favourite pop material generously.