More a phenomenon than a band, Abba's international stardom is untouchable. Their lush instrumentation and perfect vocal harmonies shine like disco lights reflecting off of lip gloss, patent leather pumps and sequins. Their ubiquitous, exuberant sound symbolized the glamour, hedonism and excesses of the 1970s. Their hits create moments of pure joy for losing yourself in the movement, sights and sounds of the crowded disco. But amidst the ecstasy came overwhelmingly sorrowful songs that brought you sympathy while you buried your lonely tears in a pillow. While their orchestrations are complex, their lyrics are written in the international pop language of English that "anyone" can sing, expressing sentiments everyone feels.
ABBA Concert Films
Rock Case Studies
Runtime: 53 minABBA’s was an extraordinary journey through the pages of music history – it took them from throwaway Eurovision turn to highly respected pop icons. This programme provides a perfect career retrospective; it looks beyond the glitz and the glamour to get to the heart of what made ABBA so special. Also included is superb footage of the band in action performing their greatest hits. Featuring highlights from: Waterloo, Mamma Mia, Knowing Me, Knowing You, Dancing Queen, Thank You For The Music, and more...
ABBA Top Tracks
Fusions: Live in London
Electric Light Orchestra
Runtime: 50 minFilmed in 1976 whilst on their Face the Music Tour, sees the band live in London for the first time in three years, due to their popularity in the United States.
Aside from Out of the Blue: Live at Wembley, this is the only concert footage of the classic lineup known to exist (with Zoom Tour Live and a VH1 Storytellers appearance from 2001 forming the only other pieces of live footage).
A Moonlight Serenade On The Queen Mary 2
Runtime: 1 hr 30 minSurrounded by a room of ballroom dancers and backed by a 15-piece orchestra, Carly Simon taped two nights of concerts on the Queen Mary 2 in early September of 2005. The six-day voyage (from New York City to Southampton, England) onboard the most famous ocean liner in the world.
Queens of Pop
Runtime: 28 minIn January 2011, ARTE viewers voted for the ‘Queens of Pop’. 8 pop queens were chosen from 50 proposals and these are presented in a 26-minute documentary: From the 1960s: Diana Ross. From the 1970s: Donna Summer and Debbie Harry. From the 1980s: Madonna. From the 1990s: Britney Spears and Mariah Carey. From 2000-2009: Lady Gaga and Beyoncé. The title of the programme, ‘Queens of Pop’, in itself shows where the emphasis lies – none of those simplistic chart rankings, but instead a documentary series that looks at our cultural history, dealing with the women who shaped popular music over the past fifty years.
Live in London
Runtime: 2 hr 13 minGeorge Michael winds down his 25 Live tour in his first-ever concert film, which finds the former Wham! leading man revisiting hits familiar and fresh in two sold-out shows at London's Earls Court. Michael's impeccable vocals take center stage, and his pop-song prowess is driven home with such classics as "Faith," "Freedom" and "One More Try." Even "Careless Whisper" gets a nod, as does the Police's "Roxanne."
Runtime: 1 hr 46 minThe Dance finds Fleetwood Mac rekindling their late ‘70s magic on stage with mostly successful results. Old friends and sparring partners Stevie Nicks, Lindsey Buckingham and Christine McVie harmonize and take turns in the spotlight, backed as before by the sturdy rhythm section of John McVie and Mick Fleetwood. Performing in a stripped-down format, the group reconsiders its past with a sense of perspective — Nicks in particular adds something new to signature songs like “Rhiannon” and “Landslide.” Buckingham acquits himself well on the always odd “Tusk” as well as such fresh tunes as the ferocious “My Little Demon” and the Appalachian-accented “Bleed to Love Her.” Christine McVie acts as a leavening force, rippling sweetly through “Say You Love Me” and gliding high on the new “Temporary One.” If there’s a centerpiece to this set, it’s Nicks’ “Silver Springs,” a devastating break-up ballad denied a spot on the Mac’s landmark Rumours album. The inevitable (but still welcome) “Don’t Stop” brings the set to a rousing conclusion.
Classic Albums: Goodbye Yellow Brick Road
Runtime: 50 minGOODBYE YELLOW BRICK ROAD gave Elton John his second number one album in both the American and British charts and provided him with four top ten singles. Interviews with Elton John himself, as well as with songwriting partner Bernie Taupin, there are contributions from musicians Davey Johnstone and Nigel Olsson, Gus Dudgeon (producer), David Hentschel (engineer), Del Newman (orchestral arranger) along with comments from Sir Tim Rice and Paul Gambaccini amongst others.
One Night Only
Runtime: 1 hr 51 minTaped as a lavish cable television special in 1997, One Night Only trades on the Bee Gees' shape-shifting career as pop survivors. Over the course of 111 minutes, this straightforward concert, produced at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas and groomed for program posterity, sprints through 31 songs from their past three decades. Even after the inevitable disco jokes are expended, and the jaundiced viewer contemplates the role hats, hairspray, and comb-overs now play in dressing the once stylishly long-haired troika, the Gibb brothers' signature vocal harmonies and hook-laden song craft beg respect.
Twelve Deadly Cyns...and Then Some
Runtime: 1 hr 16 minTwelve Deadly Cyns...And Then Some contains 14 of Cyndi Lauper's most memorable and iconic videos, including Girls Just Want To Have Fun, Time After Time" and Change Of Heart. A bonus interview with Cyndi from Coney Island is also included.
Queens of Pop
Runtime: 27 minIn January 2011, ARTE viewers voted for the ‘Queens of Pop’. 8 pop queens were chosen from 50 proposals and these are presented in a 26-minute documentary: From the 1960s: Diana Ross. From the 1970s: Donna Summer and Debbie Harry. From the 1980s: Madonna. From the 1990s: Britney Spears and Mariah Carey. From 2000-2009: Lady Gaga and Beyoncé. The title of the programme, ‘Queens of Pop’, in itself shows where the emphasis lies – none of those simplistic chart rankings, but instead a documentary series that looks at our cultural history, dealing with the women who shaped popular music over the past fifty years.
Runtime: 1 hr 1 minKylie Minogue has been a household name for over the last three decades. The Australian bombshell has become a symbol for female independence. She is a true showbiz product and an incredibly successful woman. She is a true showbiz woman. Kylie has been at the top of the charts virtually since 1988 when she released the world wide phenomenon "The Loco-Motion". Join Kylie and discover her incredible journey. It is time for Showtime.
Blondie Live! The Farewell Concert 1982
Runtime: 56 minAs the most successful cross-over band ever, Blondie sold more than 15 million albums with a string of mega-hits. It is hard to understand why at the height of their worldwide success, Blondie abruptly called it quits. Before their break up, they performed one last spectacular concert and this is it!
One Night Only: At the Village Vanguard
Runtime: 1 hr 23 minBarbra Streisand live at the Village Vanguard, New York's legendary jazz club. In September 2009, 48 years after her last club performance, a select group of fans and friends had the rare opportunity to experience Barbra in this ultimate up-close-and-personal setting. Accompanied only by piano, bass, guitar and drums, this is the artist at her most intimate.
Music in Review
Runtime: 1 hr 6 minSo what makes a superstar? This is the ultimate independent review of Madonna on record, on film and on stage. Featuring rare, previously unreleased, archive footage of Madonna performing live on stage and giving her most candid views on her own work off stage. This is the frankest, candid and penetrating retrospective on a career that has defied all the odds and ever-changing fashion. Featuring highlights from: Holiday, Like a Virgin, Material Girl, Papa Don’t Preach, Vogue, American Life and more...