Ring Ring 50th Anniversary due this spring
The year of 2023 sees the 50th anniversary of ABBA’s debut album, Ring Ring. It is an important album in the amazing history of the group, as it shows us their birth: the fascinating start of their journey, finding out who they are and where their strengths lie.
In celebration, Universal Music Group is reissuing the album on a variety of formats on May 19th. They include a 2 LP 45 RPM remastered at Abbey Road Studios in a gatefold sleeve featuring obi-strip and certificate of authenticity; a direct-to-consumer 5×7-inch Color Singles Box Set; and as individual 7-inch single Picture Discs.
Reaching record shops in Sweden on March 26, 1973, Ring Ring offered a wealth of great pop tunes, including “People Need Love,” the quartet’s first single, and “He Is Your Brother,” a popular number on the group’s 1977 tour of Europe and Australia. Crucially, on the title track the ABBA sound was born, as the group discovered how attractive the sound of multi-layered vocals was, and how exciting a song could be if you made use of all the possibilities of the recording studio.
The public responded well to the album and its title track. Famously, for two consecutive weeks in April 1973, the Swedish “Ring Ring” single was at No. 1, the English-language version at No. 2, and the album at No. 3 on the combined singles-and-albums chart used in Sweden at the time. Record-buyers had fallen head over heels in love with the group, and ABBA’s sense of joy in trying different song styles and thrilling studio trickery can still be felt today, a half a century later.
The Ring Ring album was originally credited to Björn & Benny, Agnetha & Frida – the name ABBA didn’t quite exist yet. The group itself almost didn’t exist, as the two ladies were still pursuing solo careers, and the two men were busy with many different projects when the album was recorded. But its huge success sealed the deal: from now on they would be ABBA.