ABBA reveals real reason behind garish, glitzy Costumes
by FFE EU News Staff
Swedish international singing quartet ABBA wore outlandish costumes at the height of their career not just to be remembered by their audience. One band member confessed it was a move to ward off the taxman (Skatteverket).
In a new publication ‘ABBA: The Official Photo Book,’ Björn Ulvaeus, who played guitar, said ‘In my honest opinion we looked like nuts in those years. Nobody can have been as badly dressed on stage as we were.’
The fancy clothes were specifically chosen so they were not forgotten by the audience: ‘We figured with our clothes, people would remember us even if we finished ninth.’
But according to Björn, the eye-catching stage clothes were also chosen so that they may be considered stage clothes, or clothes that cannot be worn daily. In Swedish laws at the time, owners of these kinds of clothes were given a tax refund.
The same rule stands today; but Skatteverket clarified that ‘It should be fantasy clothes, pure stage clothes, clothes with the employer’s name or logo, or other attributes that make them clearly distinguishable from ordinary garments.’
Not everyone in the group, which is also composed of Benny Andersson (keyboards), Anni-Frid Lyngstad (vocals) and Agnetha Fältskog (vocals), share Björn’s sudden turn in fashion. Frida said ‘We chose clothes we felt comfortable in. My favourite was a body stocking with a little dress cut diagonally. I thought I was elegant and sexy in it.’