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By J.D. Considine and J.D. Considine,Sun Pop Music Critic | September 17, 1995
It's all ABBA's fault.For some reason, whenever Americans put the words "Swedish" and "rock" together, all they can come up with is ABBA. Never mind that Ace of Base and Roxette have long since topped ABBA's success record; as far as most Americans are concerned, half the people in Stockholm still wander the streets singing "Fernando."So maybe we ought to put a couple of misconceptions to rest for good. First, Swedes are not totally ABBA-crazed. On a recent visit to Sweden, the only evidence I saw of lingering ABBA-mania came on a TV show called "Smastjarnona" ("The Little Stars")
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By Jordan Bartel and The Baltimore Sun | August 28, 2014
This week, 40 years ago, "The Longest Yard" was the No. 1 film at the box office, famed aviator Charles Lindbergh died and the following songs were the most popular in the United States, according to Billboard's Hot 100 chart archive. 10. "Keep On Smilin'," Wet Willie I'm assuming this lifted post-Watergate America's collective spirit. So I'll overlook the Southern rock band's name, which is clearly unfortunate. 9. "Rock Me Gently," Andy Kim Did anyone alert Neil Diamond that Andy Kim stole his sound -- and his general look?
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By J. Wynn Rousuck and J. Wynn Rousuck,sun theater critic | August 31, 2006
Think of Mamma Mia! as a pop music puzzle. The puzzle pieces are 22 songs by the '70s Swedish pop group ABBA. The solution is a script that cleverly ties the songs together with a story about a bride-to-be's search for her father's identity. This solution has proved such a bona fide crowd-pleaser, the musical has become an international sensation. Its current engagement at the Hippodrome Theatre comes only two years after it first played here - with several of the same cast members (including former Baltimorean Tiffani Barbour as one of the bride's best friends)
NEWS
By Matthew Hay Brown, The Baltimore Sun | July 7, 2014
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas met Monday with the teenager who allegedly was beaten by Israeli police last week, and Jewish leaders in Baltimore condemned the alleged abduction and killing of his cousin by several Israelis. In Israel, meanwhile, Hamas stepped up rocket fire at southern towns, and the government called up reserve troops in anticipation of a possible escalation of hostilities with the Islamist group that dominates the Gaza Strip. Relatives of 15-year-old Tariq Abu Khdeir, a Baltimore native who is visiting family in Israel with his parents and two younger sisters, say he was watching a protest leading up to the funeral of his cousin in East Jerusalem last Thursday when he was detained by Israeli police.
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By Mary Carole McCauley | mary.mccauley@baltsun.com | November 22, 2009
"Mamma mia, here I go again / My my, how can I resist you?" If only you could. But, oh, those alliterative "m's," those 17 syncopated syllables - chances are that by the time you reached the end of the first sentence, ABBA's familiar melody had forcibly taken possession of every single one of your brain cells. And there it will remain, until it is driven out by a different tune that's equally ... er, unforgettable. "If you change your mind, I'm the first in line / Honey, I'm still free, take a chance on me."
ENTERTAINMENT
By Tim Smith | tim.smith@baltsun.com and Baltimore Sun reporter | November 25, 2009
Only cool-tempered Swedes could take a hot-blooded Italian expression like "Mamma mia" (imagine Anna Magnani saying it) and use it without any syllabic stress in a light, snappy song, as if the value of the two words derived from their alliterative appeal alone. But Bjorn Ulvaeus and Benny Andersson knew just what they were doing in generating that song, and a whole bunch like it, for their famed group ABBA. The way those guys could match any string of words to magnetic melodic hooks proved magical in the 1970s and early '80s, leading to a pop music phenomenon of global proportions.
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By J. Wynn Rousuck and J. Wynn Rousuck,SUN THEATER CRITIC | April 4, 2002
ABBA-holics, forgive me, but for this critic songs like "Take a Chance on Me" and "Dancing Queen" have always belonged to the genre of bubblegum Muzak. So, if you turn nearly two dozen of these pulsing, sticky tunes into a musical, you end up with a bubblegum musical. Granted, lots of folks like bubblegum, and lots of folks like Mamma Mia!, which is not only a hit in London, New York, Toronto and Melbourne, but also has already spawned two U.S. touring companies. And no doubt about it, the company at Washington's National Theatre is slick and peppy.
NEWS
March 3, 2000
Ruth Abba Garrison, 94, seamstress, church member Ruth Abba Garrison, a retired seamstress, died Saturday of respiratory failure at Caton Manor Nursing Home in Catonsville. She was 94. Mrs. Garrison, who lived at Strawberry Hill Apartments for 20 years, was a former resident of Somers Point, N.J. She had worked for many years at the Needlecraft in Atlantic City. Earlier, she had been a seamstress at Saks Fifth Avenue in Philadelphia. The former Ruth Abba Putuss was born and raised in Huntington, W. Va., and graduated from high school there.
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By J.D. CONSIDINE | January 28, 1999
It's funny how stereotypes linger long after they cease to reflect reality. Most rock fans think of English bands as being edgy and morose, like the Cure or the Smiths, while Swedish bands are all as happy and sappy as ABBA.Not true. Just look at the Swedish double bill coming in to the 9:30 Club in Washington this Tuesday. Headlining the show are the Cardigans, a quintet whose dreamy, disco-inflected 1997 hit ``Lovefool'' seemed to support the Swedes' ABBA image - until you noticed the dark sarcasm in the words Nina Persson so sweetly warbled.
ENTERTAINMENT
By Tim Smith | tim.smith@baltsun.com | November 26, 2009
Only cool-tempered Swedes could take a hot-blooded Italian expression like "Mamma mia" (imagine Anna Magnani saying it) and use it without any syllabic stress in a light, snappy song, as if the value of the two words derived from their alliterative appeal alone. But Bjorn Ulvaeus and Benny Andersson knew just what they were doing in generating that song, and a whole bunch like it, for their famed group ABBA. The way those guys could match any string of words to magnetic melodic hooks proved magical in the 1970s and early 1980s, leading to a pop music phenomenon of global proportions.
ENTERTAINMENT
By Janell Sutherland | November 5, 2012
Last week, the teams stayed in Bangladesh and got very hot. The Twins somehow failed to fall for Boyfriend Ryan's nerdy charm, and the Goat Farmers came in last but were spared from elimination by a benevolent Phil and a pretty woman at the Pit Stop. The next destination is Istanbul (not Constantinople). Did you know that Istanbul (not Constantinople) is the only metropolis in the world that stands on two continents? Europe and Asia. How cool is that? Any final thoughts about Bangladesh, teams?
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Tribune Newspapers | August 3, 2012
Vienna, Va. ABBA The Concert You've seen the movie and the musical, so why not see the tribute concert to the 1970s Swedish pop group? Dance and sing along to hits such as "Mamma Mia!," "Dancing Queen," "Waterloo," and more. Named "the best ABBA tribute band in the world" by the Official ABBA Fan Club, ABBA The Concert has performed more than 1,000 time since its inception in 1996. ABBA The Concert is at 8 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 12, at the Filene Center at Wolf Trap, 1551 Trap Road, Vienna, Va. Tickets are $38 for in-house and $25 for the lawn.
NEWS
February 12, 2012
Signs of movement toward renewed cooperation between the Palestinian Authority and Hamas have Israeli officials on edge. Israel considers Hamas a terrorist organization committed to its destruction and has shunned negotiations. In the wake of Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas' efforts last fall to sidestep negotiations with Israel and seek United Nations recognition of a Palestinian state, it is easy to see this as another ominous sign for the prospects for peace. But there is another possibility at work.
ENTERTAINMENT
By Tim Smith | tim.smith@baltsun.com | November 26, 2009
Only cool-tempered Swedes could take a hot-blooded Italian expression like "Mamma mia" (imagine Anna Magnani saying it) and use it without any syllabic stress in a light, snappy song, as if the value of the two words derived from their alliterative appeal alone. But Bjorn Ulvaeus and Benny Andersson knew just what they were doing in generating that song, and a whole bunch like it, for their famed group ABBA. The way those guys could match any string of words to magnetic melodic hooks proved magical in the 1970s and early 1980s, leading to a pop music phenomenon of global proportions.
ENTERTAINMENT
By Tim Smith | tim.smith@baltsun.com and Baltimore Sun reporter | November 25, 2009
Only cool-tempered Swedes could take a hot-blooded Italian expression like "Mamma mia" (imagine Anna Magnani saying it) and use it without any syllabic stress in a light, snappy song, as if the value of the two words derived from their alliterative appeal alone. But Bjorn Ulvaeus and Benny Andersson knew just what they were doing in generating that song, and a whole bunch like it, for their famed group ABBA. The way those guys could match any string of words to magnetic melodic hooks proved magical in the 1970s and early '80s, leading to a pop music phenomenon of global proportions.
ENTERTAINMENT
By Mary Carole McCauley | mary.mccauley@baltsun.com | November 22, 2009
"Mamma mia, here I go again / My my, how can I resist you?" If only you could. But, oh, those alliterative "m's," those 17 syncopated syllables - chances are that by the time you reached the end of the first sentence, ABBA's familiar melody had forcibly taken possession of every single one of your brain cells. And there it will remain, until it is driven out by a different tune that's equally ... er, unforgettable. "If you change your mind, I'm the first in line / Honey, I'm still free, take a chance on me."
FEATURES
By J. Wynn Rousuck and J. Wynn Rousuck,SUN THEATER CRITIC | May 13, 2004
Mamma Mia! is a hokey musical - unabashedly, proudly, brazenly and manipulatively hokey. And the hokeyness works. Stitching together two dozen songs by Benny Andersson and Bjorn Ulvaeus of the former Swedish pop group ABBA, playwright Catherine Johnson has concocted a plot that combines a Jerry Springer-style "who's-my-father?" mystery with the reunion of a 1970s girl group and an account of wedding preparations. It's a bubblegum story set to bubblegum music and, as the touring production at the Hippodrome Theatre proves, it's a good fit. In case there's any doubt, the sheer silliness of director Phyllida Lloyd's staging and Anthony Van Laast's choreography ensure that fun is the show's primary objective.
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