Björn and Benny’s “Best of 2008” lists

Benny and Björn at Mono Music

Benny and Björn at Mono Music – Photo: Magnus Sandberg

Film: Björn: Roy Andersson’s latest, Du Levande (Ice – This is the most recent movie to feature original Benny Andersson music)… It was good. And Maria Larssons eviga ögonblick. 

CD: Benny: I have listened to African music. There is a great song called Miniyamba by Coumba Gawlo. 

Reading: Benny: The two that stand out is Vi de drunknade (We the drowned) by Carsten Jensen, a great epic about the people in a small harbour town in Denmark. Then of course Ett annat liv by P.O. Enquist.

Björn: Ett annat liv by P O Enquist. Very beautiful prose and gripping reading. 

Stage show: Benny: My Fair Lady. I am so fond of Helen. It does not matter what she is in. It is never bad with Helen.

Moment: Björn: To be part of the jury for Svenska hjältar (Swedish Heroes). The people who receive this award are really worthy of the attention.

Benny: The entire month in New York mixing Mamma Mia! was a positive experience. To see how meticulously Phyllida went through every single syllable of Mamma Mia!. There is not a single bird chirping without Phyllida wanting it right where it is!

Aftonbladet also asks Benny and Björn about their amazing year, the phenomenal success of Mamma Mia!, why they didn’t write a new song for the film that could have been considered for an Oscar….it would have appeared "blatant", says Björn, and how everyone involved in Mamma Mia! The Movie is delighted with its success, including Universal, who would love a sequel. 

Benny: What is the point? The only reason is economic. And it is not enough. However, it would be fun if Catherine wanted to write something that was brand new and in need of songs. I can imagine. Phyllida may like to direct and Meryl may be happy to be part of it. It would be fun. We have become infected by the joy of making films. The problem is that people buy their first horse and think it will win every derby. It is not so. We will never experience this again, to be involved in such a blockbuster. We must focus on something else. 

In 2009, the Golden Globes are something the guys are looking forward to….Björn for a family reason, his cousin Agneta Ulfsäter-Troell is nominated for Maria Larssons eviga ögonblick. "Maria Larsson is her dad and my dad’s aunt. We are pretty close relatives," he says.

Björn is planning a cross country skiing trip in Orsa and fancies checking out the South Pacific islands in September, "French Polynesia should be fun", he says. 

Benny: We go on tour with the BAO. It will be fun, because it was a few years ago since our last one. We will also play in London in early July. On Hampstead Heath in connection with the handing over to the Swedish Presidency of the EU. We’ll try to put out a CD with English songs, some of which are already recorded.


Björn says in the interview that the lyrics Sarah Brightman uses in her version of Arrival were written in 1999 when the plan was for the song to fetaure at the end of Mamma Mia! as a kind of ‘unifying’ song.

Thanks to Stefan, Ian Cole and others who wrote to me with news of this article.


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