The Global Jukebox: The International Music Industry

By Robert Burnett | Go to book overview

Chapter 8

The Swedish example

I’m gonna get dressed for success,

Shaping me up for the big time baby,

Get dressed for success,

Shaping me up for your love.

(Roxette, ‘Dressed for Success’)

Following in the footsteps of their Viking ancestors, today’s Swedish pop stars are busy conquering the airwaves of the globe. The beautiful Viking ships of old have been replaced by music television and radio. Battle axes and swords replaced with well-crafted Euro-pop tunes, dance music and media friendly rock music. It all started with ABBA. Today, with artists like Roxette, Europe, Ace of Base, Dr Alban and Army of Lovers leading the invasion, Swedish pop music has finally made it big internationally. Swedish music has become an export industry. The paradox is that there are very few Swedish recording companies left that have not been taken over in some form by the transnational phonogram companies. During the past decade the transnationals have successively acquired control of the Swedish music industry. In this chapter we will examine that story.


CHANGES IN THE SWEDISH MEDIASCAPE

The period since the mid-1980s has seen dramatic changes upon the Swedish mediascape. The most dramatic are perhaps those concerning that often neglected medium, radio. Until 1989 Radio Sweden, a public service radio company jointly owned by the trade union movement, the press and the business community, had the sole broadcasting rights to the airwaves in Sweden. Radio Sweden consists of four channels, each of which aims at a particular audience. Program 1 caters to debate programmes and documentaries, while Program 2 is mostly devoted to classical music. Program 3 is an easy listening channel with lots of sports,

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The Global Jukebox: The International Music Industry
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents vii
  • Figures ix
  • Tables xi
  • Acknowledgements xiii
  • Chapter 1 - Introduction 1
  • Chapter 2 - Music and the Entertainment Industry 8
  • Chapter 3 - Music as Popular Culture 29
  • Chapter 4 - The Music Industry in Transition 44
  • Chapter 5 - The Production of Popular Music 64
  • Chapter 6 - The Consumption of Popular Music 81
  • Chapter 7 - The American Example 99
  • Chapter 8 - The Swedish Example 120
  • Chapter 9 - Future Sounds: a Global Jukebox? 138
  • Postscript 149
  • Bibliography 153
  • Index 166
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