EP: I must say the meaning of Fernando has always confused me.
Benny: Björn used to write almost all the lyrics. And the music suggested him to happen in the Mexican border.
EP: If the soldiers in the song happen to be mexican, then why the peruvian flutes?
Benny: They were southamerican alright. Yes, I recognize this fact.
EP: It is good then to have this twists in ABBA songs.
Benny: It’s good to surprise now and then with things that don’t fit completely in a song. In our case melody, chorus or arrangements never followed the same path. Each instrument had something specific to do, that was the picture all the time: “we have the melodies and harmonies already what goes next?”
EP: What’s the role of every member of ABBA in this musical?
Benny: Björn is involved from the very beginning but I was reluctant because I thought that if it was not good enough, it could harm our musical legacy, when I saw the resulting musical I changed my mind.
EP: And Frida and Agnetha?
Benny: Frida was allowed to invest money when the musical went to the US. Agnetha has nothing to do whatsoever.
EP: Is the success of Mamma Mia a good reason for ABBA to come back or a reason for not coming back?
Benny: Four years ago we were offered for a world reunion tour of about a hundred concerts and it was lots of money, but there is no reason at all for us to comeback. We took that decision a long time ago. In 1982, Björn and me took a rest in order to write a musical which took us 5 years to achieve. Then, we all realized that we were happy with our own projects and that there was nothing worthy left to get back. Even for the people is better to remember us as were, as younger people and the way we used to behave back then.
EP: Would you have liked to have a musical like this one back in the 70’s or even a clone group like Björn Again in order to avoid the stressed life musicians often lead?
Benny: It was not really that tough. We made only 2 major tours within 10 years but none of us was very fond of touring. And Agnetha not at all!
EP: Which modern groups do you like?
Benny: I’m not up to date with what’s happening nowadays. I have listened mostly to classical music for the past 20 years.
EP: Are you already bored of pop music?
Benny: No, but I think pop is made by young people and for young people.
EP: But ABBA is considered as pop for all ages, isn’t it?
Benny: I don’t know. We made pop when we were young and I’m not able to connect with today’s rock anymore. There must be some new good groups for sure but I can’t think of one right now. Well, there you have the Dixie Chicks. I like them and I guess it’s because they are chicks singing and it reminds me of what we used to do.
EP: When I was a kid I used to think that you had to dress up that way, because it was Frida and Agnetha’s decision and they obliged you but now I kinda realize that Björn did enjoy wearing those garments.
Benny: Yes, Björn did enjoy it. But if you take a closer look, I tried to dress up in a moderated way. It all started when we competed at the Eurovision Song Contest, and we decided to dress in a way people weren’t able to forget us. Then we kept on doing it further but sometimes we looked kind of ridiculous.
EP: Is there any photo where you could say: “Here, we crossed the line!”
Benny: Just one? Plenty!
EP: Is it true that a movie based on Mamma Mia! is already being rolled?
Benny: It’s already finished. It’s under postproduction. The release will be in mid-July.
EP: Won’t it be awkward to listen Meryl Streep singing ABBA hits?
Benny: No. I don’t think so. She sings well.