Waterloo 30th Anniversary Edition - the details

Published April 06, 2010


The 30th Anniversary Edition of the Waterloo album was born under sort of roundabout circumstances. In November 2003, I was having a meeting with Karin Häggblom, who at the time was the Label Manager for Polar Music International at Universal Music. We were casually discussing various ideas for future ABBA releases, and I mentioned an idea I had brought up about six months earlier, before Karin joined the "ABBA team" at Universal Music. In a few years' time, I thought it would be nice to issue a Deluxe Edition of the Arrival album, with one CD and one DVD of television material. The release of that package should coincide with the 30th Anniversary of the album's original release in 1976.

That idea was met with approval, and Karin liked it as well. She even suggested that we could do that for the Waterloo album. Earlier, we had hoped that the ABBA In Concert DVD would be released in time for the 30th Anniversary in April 2004, but at this point it looked like it would be postponed until later that year (as it turned out, Universal had it in the shops by the end of March after all, but that's another story). Since we had no new "celebratory" release scheduled for the actual 30th Anniversary date, we felt a Deluxe Edition of Waterloo would be perfect.

Note: If you want to know more about the hows, whens and whys of the ABBA Deluxe Editions, please click the "About the Deluxe Editions" link in the More Info menu.


I put together a suggestion for a track listing for the Waterloo release. After a few discussions back and forth, we were given the go-ahead for the track listing you now see on this package. As usual, I contributed liner notes, and also some of the memorabilia featured in the booklet and on the digipack. I contacted Wouter Timmers in The Netherlands and asked him to help us with scans of single sleeves (Wouter writes an article about ABBA singles in each issue of the Official International ABBF Fan Club magazine). Ian Cole and Matti Crocker in Australia provided helpful suggestions and contacts for this release.

The designer of this 30th Anniversary release of Waterloo was Fredrik Hurtig of design company In Fine Style. Fredrik also did the 2001 edition of the Remastered versions of ABBA's original albums, as well as the current version of ABBA Gold. Click on the In Fine Style link under "More info" to have a look at his work.

The package came together pretty much as I had envisioned it - a classy release where the music, the visuals and the liner notes combine to give a sense of what ABBA were really about in 1974.


The Deluxe digipack version of the Waterloo 30th Anniversary Edition was only released in Sweden. The rest of the world got a Sound + Vision package in a plastic case, although the booklet and all the other important stuff was of course included (however, some artwork on the Swedish digipack was missing from this version).

Please note that this 30th Anniversary release of Waterloo was a project completely separate from the Sound + Vision packages of the albums ABBA and Arrival, also released in the spring of 2004. These latter releases consisted of the 2001 versions of those albums, plus a DVD of official video clips related to the albums. Unlike Waterloo, there was no previously unreleased material on those packages. The Waterloo release was put together in Stockholm; the Sound + Vision releases of ABBA and Arrival were done by Universal Music International in London.


The efforts behind the 30th Anniversary Edition of Waterloo were justified when the album went on to enter the Swedish album chart. This is quite a feat, since it is highly unusual for re-releases of old studio albums to enter the sales chart. Usually, the weekly sales are not enough to register in the charts, although long-term sales may be quite satisfactory. Therefore, I was delighted to note that the 30th Anniversary Edition of Waterloo not only entered the Swedish album chart at 56 at the end of April, 2004, but went on to peak at 49 the following week. Not bad for a 30-year-old album...

Click here to learn more about the ABBA Deluxe Edition series.