If there are two Swedish bands that are quickly remembered like this, one is Roxette and the other…. ABBA. What ABBA was to Swedish pop, Roxette was to Swedish rock. On this occasion, our ‘what happened’ is going to be different… Today it will be ‘how it happened’, because sometimes the beginning is more interesting than the end of a group, as it happens. ‘Told Guillem Caballé in his section at La Ventana de Cadena SER. Let’s enjoy the trip!

By Gessle there Mary Fredriksson They were Roxette, but they never quit their solo career. Marie passed away on December 9, 2019 after a long treatment for a brain tumor at the age of 61, leaving two orphaned children, Per and a horde of followers who adored his voice. Per continues to sing in Swedish and English and in 2021 he releases his last solo album. For example, Per led a group called Golden clues who never stopped releasing records.

Roxette sang in Swedish, but switched to English like other Swedish bands: ABBA or basic ace, with every intention of succeeding outside of Sweden. The band released their debut album in 1986 and sold a million records in their native Sweden, but it wasn’t until 1988 that they released their now hugely famous album. Look Sharp! which got No. 1 for 14 weeks.

In Sweden, they were better known than sustromi, herring that smells like flowers. But they went to Benidorm on holiday and went unnoticed among any herd of Swedes. I didn’t know them or Perry. Only the eight million Swedes of the 1980s could know who they were then. His records have not been released beyond the Scandinavian countries.

This is where an American exchange student comes in. From Minneapolis (the city of Prince, or the artist formerly known as Prince and then again Prince). Your name: Dean Cushman. The boy, between studying Swedish, familiarizing himself with Swedish customs, assembling furniture and fraternizing with his college friends, turned on the radio one day to see how Swedish songs sounded and if he could improve his pronunciation while singing. It was then that he heard The look.

The waiter left fast and fast to buy the vinyl from Look Sharp! by Roxette and played it so many times in his bedroom in his student apartment that the other classmates ran out of the apartment. He gave so much turra to friends, family and acquaintances over Christmas in Minneapolis that there was only one thing left for him to do: get to the local station to give the turra to the DJ on duty. The radio was KDWB, and the DJ, since we’re good people, put the song on the radiowith little or no hope that he would succeed.

The game went better than expected. Listeners, upon hearing the song from this unknown Swedish band, kept asking for the song on the station. It grew and grew so much that other stations in town also put it up, then stations in neighboring cities, then stations in other American countries…and then the world. What we would commonly call today: viralize.

Imagine you’re Per Gessle thousands of miles away, you wake up and while you’re eating breakfast you listen to the messages, and you hear one that freaks you out. He talks about the boom in the United States, the urgent organization of a tour. “How strange,” he thinks. “We don’t even have the edited album there!”. The server, Dean Cushman, is currently 56 years old and 34 years have passed since his achievement: introduce Roxette to all of planet Earth.

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