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Interviews mit Jenny

Als in der 2. Dezemberwoche "Singles of the 90s" in Spanien und Europa promotete, gab Jenny Berggren verschiedene Interviews für spanische Medien. Allerdings kam sie dafür nicht nach Spanien, sondern hielt diese am Telefon. Im Februar 2000 wurden die folgenden Interviews in den spanischen Medien veröffentlicht. Diese Interviews sind dem spanischen Acer Paul, der ebenfalls im offiziellen spanischen Fanclub engagiert ist, zu verdanken. Er veröffentlichte die 4 Interviews in "Teenage Heaven" von www.aceofbase.com.


The Abba of the 90s will release a greatest hits with the singles of their first three albums. Also in SOT90S the swedishs will include some new songs as a preview of their new album expected for this year.

The new album, The Singles of the 90s, includes their best songs like All that She Wants a catchy theme on the wave of their other hits. "This album is like a travel in the time", says Jenny Berggren, sister of Linn and Jonas, alias Joker, all them band members together with their friend Ulf Ekberg, a lover of computers. "We are already working in our fourth album. We are working on it with new producers and we go a bit more to the limit. We are approaching our sound to a music with more energy, but people sure will recognize us" affirms Jenny on a phone conversation. While this new work arrives their fans will have to get satisfied with the new tracks included in the greatest hits: C'est La Vie, Hallo Hallo and Love in December.

The fame, the preasure and the tours haven't finished with their good humor and the optimism in their songs. "Ace of Base has a positive view of life. We are that way. Music journalists don't like bands that make happy songs. They talk bad about us, I don't know why, but I don't care" says this young woman that considers that the 30 million copies sold of their first three albums prove their quality. "What really made me care -says Jenny- were those rumours that we were splitting up when we never had any reason to do such a thing". In their case, splitting up would be a drama cause of the family factor. "That will never happen", says Jenny. "We have very clear that first is the family, then the band and far beyond the fame". She also has clear their future in the music industry. "I don't think our success will last forever, we won't be like the Rolling Stones". Berggren parents teached their children to love the music, specially classic and folk. "I started to sing just after being born", laughs Jenny. She and her sister used to sing at the church and at home. At the age of 14 Jenny and Linn joined a band. "Since then, we have always sung together. For us is the more natural thing". At the age of 18 they joined their brother's band together with Ulf and Ace of Base was born.

They never suspected that they would become a phenomenon of the 90s. "When you are young and suddenly you become famous you have a lot of doubts", explains. "Be yourself in this business is a challenge that you have to admit to survive. For the artists to have an attitude is important, but it has to be your own attitude, independently of what's selling more", adds Jenny.


They invaded dance floors all over the world with their happy and dancing techno-pop on the begining of the 90s. Their first hits, today classics of the dance music, made them fill the hole left by Abba.

In ten years of band life the swedish Ace of Base have published, with more or less fortune, three albums with songs full of energy and very positive lyrics. The siblings Jenny, Linn and Jonas Berggren and their friend Ulf Ekberg never imagined what the future would bring to them when they presented a song called Wheel of Fortune to a danish music company. To their first hit followed the worldwide hit All That She Wants that finally bring them to the higher positions of all the music charts and made them become needed on the bests discos, clubs and cool places. Who hasn't danced on any summer place to songs like Life is a Flower, Happy Nation, The Sign o Beautiful Life? Numbers talk by themselves, since the begining the swedish band has sold over 30 million copies all along a success band life which continuity seemed to be in danger after the publication of their last album Flowers. The supposed bad relations between the band members was a rumour that disturbed their fans and gave something to talk to their detractors. Is hard to fight against rumours, that's why Jenny, Linn, Ulf and Jonas saved their last game and now they are back with a greatest hits called the Singles of the 90s where they recopilate their best songs plus three new titles, C'est La vie, Hallo Hallo and Love in December. Three songs that show the brilliant future of a band that wants to prove one more time that the only one thing they want in this life is to make people happy.

GU-After ten years, in what has changed the band?

JENNY-Now we feel ourselves more free and of course more mature musically speaking. We have evolved and grown with our public without changing our danceable pop line that so good result has given to us all over the world.

GU-What has taken Ace of Base to publish an album of great hits at this moment?

JENNY-It had been since some time ago that we had been thinking about this project. We received many letters of our fans requesting to return and thought that this was a good bridge, a good way to begin the new decade with many desire. In addition, we were preparing a new disc and this was the best form to return to connect with the public.

GU-The album includes the songs with more success, but Is there any important song for you that has been left out of the cd?

JENNY-No, but it was hard to make the final tracklisting of the cd. For us all our songs are favorites, but it was impossible to put them all. We also have considered very important to include new songs and that way know the reaction of the public to our new compositions.

GU-After months of rumours of the band splitting up comes a question, are you now more united that never before?

JENNY-Yes. We never stoped being together. We have kept together all this time even when we knew about the rumours that of course were never true. After so many time together we still enjoy it, both inside and outside the recording studio, but sometimes there were missunderstoods. We are convinced that there is no group that supports, without any kind of discussion, two years of gigs and tours all around the world.

GU-Once Ace of Base will be history, how would you like to be remembered?

JENNY-For our songs, of course. The most important thing is that people have fun and enjoys our music listening and dancing to them.

GU-After making some covers of songs like Cruel Summer or Don't Turn Around... What others songs would you like to cover?

JENNY-Now there are some very interesting musical styles: hip-hop, drum'n bass, house, and they give a lot of possibilities. More than covers, what we are gonna show in our next albums is a mix of these styles. A lot of dance!!!

GU-The new album comes with old songs and three new songs, how come the three new songs?

JENNY- Jonas composes most of the songs, but the four of us give our ideas and personal points of view.

GU-And the composition process, is it hard for you all to meet on your ideas?

JENNY-We meet at the studio and see what we have. It's not so hard as it may seem.

The future of the swedish Ace of Base starts today, and the project of their new studio album is seen as the continuation of a successful band life which history will be condensed in a final greatest hits. We will have to wait after the summer, cause Linn's status, to discover the new compositions of the band.

GU-When the new album?

JENNY-As I said before we are working on it. There are some tracks recorded at the studio and the cd will be published at the end of summer 2000, but we don't have an exact date still.

GU-Do you have in mind to visit Spain for promoting The Singles of the 90s?

JENNY-No, I don't think it will be possible. We are very concentrated on the new album and we have parked the promotion for a while. Visits are left for later.


On the past ten years Ace of Base has sold over 30 million copies of their albums and 15 millions of their singles, they have been number one on almost all the world music charts and have become a phenomenon. Ace of Base is Jonas "Joker" Petter Berggren, his sisters Malin Sofia Katarina, known as Linn and Jenny Cecilia together with Ulf "Buddha" Gunnar Ekberg. Born in Gothenburg, Sweden, Ace of Base started with a different name, Tech Noir. After a few time they called themselves as we know them now and started to have success with their first world hit, All That She Wants. After three successful albums arrives for this year 2000 a greatest hits with three unreleased songs. A pleasure for the AceofBasemaniatics, a pleasure for us talking with Jenny.

NS-How did you choose the tracklisting for this cd?

JENNY-We have chosen the songs that we really like more for the Singles of the 90s and the three new songs that we have included have been chosen from another other 15 tracks we have and that will be included on a new cd. The recopilation was released first in Denmark and Germany because music companies wanted it to be available on christmas. We thought it was a bit crazy because after some time without releasing anything we wanted to release something new and not a greatest hits but the music companies insisted because fans were requesting a preview from the new album. We finally accepted to win some time and that way have ready the new studio album.

NS-Is there any favorite song for you on the Singles of the 90s?

JENNY-Yes, from the new songs my favorite is "Hallo Hallo" and from the old songs "Happy Nation". I think they are tracks that will never get old and that everybody knows and sings.

NS-Ace of Base had a lot of success between public of different ages, is this new album devoted to any public?

JENNY-Probably to the people that bought the first album because it's the most popular album of the three we have published. Also to a new generation that was too much young to buy our cds and to know we existed. But there is a lot of adult people that in contact with their sons and daughters have got to know and to like us.

NS-Do you have any solo project?

JENNY-Jonas and Ulf have worked producing on solo projects under the name of "Yaki-Da" and "Together" and is good that each one developes his/her own projects and not get bored, but our priority is the "Ace of Base" project and is the one that more time takes of us.

NS-You have a lot of gay fans, do you feel their support?

JENNY-Gay fans are very important for us, and I'm not trying to be cool now with them, but is a thing we have talked a lot between us on the band and is a shame that people don't realize that being gay is only a way of love, not a provocation or something bad. By the other side the gay public is very critic and has different musical tastes. But I don't think that their support, that I'm sure is there, was specially important for our success. In Sweden, if there is a band that really feels the gay support is Abba.

NS-Have you thought about recording a song in castellano?

JENNY-We recorded "Beautiful Life" in spanish but the guy that did the traduction of the lyrics did a really bad work and finished sounding horrible. We were singing something without sense and finally decided to stop the production of the song before it reached the stores. As experience it was enough for us.


They have been ten years there, filling the radios with their happy pop songs, songs that were born to be number one. These four swedish - sibling Jonas, Linn and Jenny Berggren and friend Ulf Ekberg- have meet the success since their first world wide hit All That She Wants and haven't stopped to release singles on the same style. A bit of reggae, a bit of motown, but always with their inconfundible sound which mission is to make people dance. The publication of Singles of the 90s shows that Ace of Base has left an important mark of the world of europop.

Jenny Berggren, the brunette sister and main voice on the band, is the one that will have a talk with us about the Ace of Base success. The conversation is made by phone because the four Aces are working on the studio recording their fourth album of new songs (an album "more hard" says Jenny) that will be published as soon as the impact of this greatest hits starts to vanish. It's evident that Ace of Base don't trust the memory of their fans, reason for their desire of reaching the charts with happy and not too much serious themes every few years. They think they still have lots of things to do on the music industry as they feel now "more together than never". The most successful swedish menace since the Abba times keeps being a reality.

SE-Doesn't it seem like a miracle to think that Ace of Base has managed to survive to a decade?

JENNY-It's a bit strange. We are working on a new album, so releasing a greatest hits means stablishing a bridge with the new decade. The most important is that we have kept together all this time and have tried to use different musical styles. Now we are at the studio and we are enjoying it very much, and that's a rare thing because our music company pushed us so much in the past that there was a time that recording sessions became a trauma. Right now we feel more free.

SE-Will you ever manage to record another "All That She Wants"?

JENNY-I wouldn't mind it, it's a song that I love. Success is very strange and imprevisible. You can put all your heart but you never know if your work will fill the expectatives of the public. And if things go too much well then success finish being bad, your feel youself like a golden cow that everybody adore without reason. You see that people behind you are more worried for the sales than for you. In brief, you really need a hard protection to not get destroyed.

SE-Ace of Base has always had fans and also people that hates you as a band and that say you are repetitive and boring, what do you think about it?

JENNY-It's true we habe been criticized a lot on the last years but a situation like this make you wonder: who are you, what are you doing, what's your mission. The sad thing is that always speaks people that should shut up. We are not so repetitive and boring like many others actual groups, but we were the firsts to explore the happy songs style, that's true.

SE-Do you consider an injustice not being respected only for making happy pop?

JENNY-On a side I understand that there is people that don't like pop, as there is people that don't like heavy. We listen to all kinds of music, so we don't have limits in our evolution. But it is sad that some people tries to put limits to the music and this people is the one that enjoys less our music. It happens to me that I can't stand jazz fussion.

SE-So, why is it that a group like Abba keeps being admired by millions of people that also keep buying their cds?

JENNY-Basically it's because they sold themselves to their music company, and their music company doesn't let their spirit in peace [···laughs···]. It's a very easy way to make profitable their success, re-editing the sames albums again and again. By the other side I have to admit an amazing capacity to create melodies, that's why people keeps loving them.

SE-With what kind of scandinavian bands do you have more relation, with the ones on the Aqua style or with The Cardigans, for example?

JENNY-I know members of the two groups you put as examples, and even if at a personally level I have very few things in common with them but on the musical level we have nothing in common. Aqua is a band to much... marketed, and The Cardigans are too much dark, but I respect them. Anyway what I really care for is our music.

SE-Your success has been lossing power on the last years. Maybe you need to find a new formula to have numbers one again?

JENNY-If one of the objectives of a band is NOT to have numbers one on the music charts then there is no need to feel we are lossing our success. The important things is to have an innocent spirit in such a hard business like this, and that's not really easy. We have to keep looking at the material we have without thinking about platinum discs and marketing. What people wants is to listen to good songs, and that's why we are concentrating so much on the composition. There is no formula here, mass creation is not our style. It's something similar to what happend on the fashion world: I remember that there was a time where fashion designers wanted to impose to us the women the miniskirt but they didn't have success. You don't have to underestimate the people thinking that they are so stupid like for buying what a magazine says is cool even if they don't like it. The secret of our success is based on that we have never tried to go breaking the market with our music and offer something radically new. What has happened with Jennifer Paige, for example? Crush was a big hit, but where is she now?

SE-There were a lot of rumours about Ace of Base: that you couldn't stand each other, that each one of you used to enter to the recording studio by different doors... How many of them are true?

JENNY-None. We have never ever had the fights that some medias published. Almost everybody knows that three of us are siblings and we know perfectly how to manage each other, but we are also part of a band. We never created Ace of Base to last forever, and I really doubt we will keep working together when we will be 80 years old. For that we have the Rolling Stones [···laughs···]. The important is that problems get a solution quickly to skip bad feelings so we can have a cool coexistence. What I have to admit is that after the two years of tour with our first album we started to get a bit bored of each other. But I don't know of any band that after supporting the pressure of success and an exhausting promotional tour still remain together. There were missunderstoods and discussions but that's inevitable in this business.

SE-When it was released the new that Ulf was neonazi lots of your fans started to dislike your cds, is it true that new?

JENNY-Ulf never was a neonazi, so this is another rumour that keeps clarified. He had a relation with a group of skinheads in a moment of his life and in interviews he did all over the world he has declared how sorry he feels for being part of this movement. I don't think it's good to talk about this topics, because the only thing we get is to make free publicity to nazis groups.

SE-Who do you think released such rumours?

JENNY-It's impossible to control the medias and much more to win them on their own area. The best is to answer with honesty to their questions and skip bad feelings. But not everybody dares to make some questions face to face, because some of them just don't care for the true, they just want to make you appear like a bad person.

SE-Album by album you go getting older, but on your last single you confess that you will always be 21, are you serious?

JENNY-Well, my boyfriend is a lot younger than me, so I have to admit I'm still young on my spirit [···laughs···]. We follow the example of our parents, they teached us to follow our feelings and do always what we want.

SE-Will ever arrive a moment in which you will get bored of europop?

JENNY-I'm already tired of europop. Right now there are lot's of styles much more interesting but I don't know if we will reach them, all is a production thing, and my opinion does not count a lot on this aspect. I really doubt we will vary a lot in our musical direction, but we will see.

SE-So, what are you doing right now?

JENNY-We are all the day closed at the recording studio, ¡and we won't leave it till we have finished the album! We only let our brother go out so he can see a daughter he had some weeks ago.

SE-If you had to choose three band of the 90s that you really like...

JENNY-It's so hard! Lots of my favorites groups are gone, like 2 Unlimited. What more? Of course, the best, Abba, with them we will never be compared, -even we share the same taste for the melodies and we come from the same country. They haven't published any new song this decade but their songs keep being the most listened all aroudn the world. The third band would be Savage Garden, because I feel an incredible energy in their compositions. Once we had the same producer that Savage Garden and he told us that both we and Savage Garden have a similar way of working at the studio, very relaxed. We have never liked to take things too much serious.