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Ace of Base’s playlist

Twenty-five years ago the Swedish pop group Ace of Base released their explosive debut album The Sign to North America.

Generating more revenue that year than the Sweden-based vehicle empire VOLVO, the record went on to sell over 23 million copies, and is among the most successful debut albums of all time.

In Canada, the album spawned the No.1 hit singles “All That She Wants,” “Don’t Turn Around” and “The Sign,” and is certified diamond, having sold over 1 million units in the nation alone.

“I only realized how much of a success Ace of Base had become when we went straight up to No. 1 in the United States and Canada,” founding member Jenny Berggren tells me over the phone from Sweden. “These are the biggest markets in the world and we were on top.”

Jenny will never forget what it felt like to have earned that paramount position and says there are many priceless moments she will always cherish like the first time she heard the band’s music play on Scandinavian radio at home in Gothenburg.

“It was just amazing to hear. I remember feeling like, ‘Ooh! They’re playing our song ‘Wheel of Fortune!’ Come on, they must be joking,” Jenny laughs. “It was very special.”

To mark the anniversary, I asked Jenny to dig into the past and curate a playlist of her favorite songs by artists she feels played a large role in shaping pop music today, just like Ace of Base did.

 

Woman in Love – Barbra Streisand
“This one goes back to when I was about 10 or 11 years old. Pop music for me has always been very much about the vocals. I love how Barbra hits those notes and doesn’t let go. She holds on forever.”

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Jesus Take the Wheel – Carrie Underwood
“I’ve performed this song because I like it very, very much. Carrie makes a good point when she sings ‘Jesus, take the wheel.’ Sometimes you have to let go and let someone else take care of it all.”

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Wild Boys – Duran Duran
“This a memory of a time when you could have trashy clothes and for the first time it was OK and accepted. Duran Duran was just so cool. ‘Wild Boys’ is from a time that I hit the dance floor for real. This is just another group that shaped me as a performing artist.”

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Firework – Katy Perry
“It has such an energy to it and a message. There’s a light within you, you’ve got it. You just have to ignite it, come on! This one can boost your self esteem in fantastic ways.”

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Poker Face – Lady Gaga
“I heard this song very early on and knew it was going to be huge. It’s an amazing song and a gift to all dancers. You can really show off and let everything go to this song.”

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Family Portrait – P!nk
“I’m so surprised at how much P!nk can really get under your skin. She can be very naked through songs like this. She’s really opened doors in the world of pop music.”

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I’ll Be Loving You Always – Stevie Wonder
“Stevie Wonder is an amazing artist. I saw him live in Stockholm when he was here. Wow! Just look at the way he plays his music. He’s a true artist.”

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I Learned From the Best – Whitney Houston
“This is a song that led me to pour my pain into my music and relieve myself of that pain. It’s like scratching where it itches. When you touch the place that hurts, the pain lessens. This is one of those songs.”

Relive the past and get tracks from Ace of Base’s smash debut The Sign remastered on iTunes now.

Posted by on Apr 26 2018. Filed under Celebrity Playlist. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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