ABBA’s Bjorn hits out at Donald Trump for using his song at rally

Abba's Björn Ulvaeus: Brexit would be a disaster

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Björn Ulvaeus, 77, is the Swedish singer and songwriter behind many of ABBA’s hits, including The Winner Takes It All. The musician is also notoriously vocal about politics, and said he is “mourning” the decline of democracy.

Björn was just 35 when he and fellow ABBA member Benny Andersson penned The Winner Takes It All in 1980, but thanks to the incredible success of movie musical Mamma Mia!, the song is just as well-known to teenagers today as it was four decades ago.

However, the musician believes there is a great misunderstanding as to what the song is actually about.

Speaking to Radio Times for their Christmas Issue, Björn recalled former United States president Donald Trump falling victim to this trap.

Donald Trump’s campaigns for presidency have often seen musical artists calling out the politician for using their songs at rallies, from Elton John to Aerosmith.

Björn vaguely recalled the politician using one of ABBA’s songs too, saying: “I think he has, I can’t remember.

“It was probably The Winner Takes It All. He’s totally misunderstood it.

“Thank God it didn’t work.”

Björn also took the opportunity to speak out on the recent Swedish elections this year, saying: “I mourn that trust in the democratic institutions is declining, and the trust of the citizens of Sweden in each other is also declining.”

“I remember Christmas in the late 50s and early 60s, when the future was incredibly bright.

“Some people say that (era) was the peak of humanity, at least in Western democracies.

“That’s very different from celebrating Christmas now when there is such darkness on the horizon – the fear of the US becoming an autocracy, climate change, war.”

Many fans will immediately associate The Winner Takes It All with Meryl Streep’s emotional rendition in the film Mamma Mia!, as she runs away from her character Donna’s love interest Sam (Pierce Brosnan).

While that is somewhat the meaning behind the song, in 1980 fans fully understood the meaning rooted in reality.

The song was written in the same year Björn and fellow ABBA member Agnetha Fältskog got divorced, and tells the tale of a woman clinging on to the memories of her failed marriage.

While Björn has previously denied that the song is about his divorce specifically, he explained it is about divorce in general.

Smooth Radio reported the singer as saying: “It’s fiction. There wasn’t a winner or a loser in our case. A lot of people think it’s straight out of reality, but it’s not.”

The outlet also reported that Björn said he was drunk when writing the song, admitting that it’s usually not the best idea. 

He said: “It all came out on that one. By the time I wrote ‘The gods may throw their dice’ the bottle was empty.”

Björn originally sang the demo for the song and was prompted by many to take on the vocal challenge for the final version.

Ultimately he handed singing responsibilities to his now ex-wife Agnetha and, rather than feeling awkward about the situation, she found the gesture touching.

Agnetha reportedly appreciated having an outlet for the emotions that she was also experiencing during the divorce, hence the emotional final product. has contacted Donald Trump’s representatives for comment. 

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