Swedish quartet Abba formed in the early 1970s and had a number of minor hits before winning the Eurovision Song Contest in 1974 with Waterloo. The band really took off in the mid-1970s with songs like Dancing Queen and Knowing Me, Knowing You. One of the most successful acts of all time, they've sold over 270 million records.
Björn Ulvaeus and Benny Andersson, went on to write lucrative stage musicals, including Chess with Tim Rice, and have been instrumental in the success of musical and film Mamma Mia! Agnetha Fältskog now lives on a remote farm in Sweden. Anni-Frid has recently appeared at premieres of Mamma Mia!
Eagles were one of the most successful musical acts of the 1970s, with five number one singles and six number one albums. In fact, their album Eagles: Their Greatest Hits 1971–1975 is the bestselling album in the USA to date!
The band got back together in the mid-80s and have performed together on and off ever since. In 2007 they released their first studio album for nearly 30 years, Long Road out of Eden. They've since won two Grammys.
Pink Floyd hit the big time on a grand scale in the 1970s when erratic frontman Syd Barrett left and was replaced by David Gilmour. With Roger Waters in control, the band became one of the major forces during the psychedelic era. A generation of kids cheered when the band launched the tune Brick In The Wall, which included the line "We don't need no education."
In 1985 Waters left the band but the remaining members decided to carry on without him. He sued them for use of the name, eventually settling out of court. The band (who were allowed to stay as Pink Floyd) continued to have success and Waters performed with them again at the Live 8 concert in 2005.
Once credited as being the World's Loudest Band by the Guinness Book of Records, Deep Purple are widely regarded as one of the forerunners of the UK heavy metal scene. Formed in Hertfordshire in 1968 the band has had a varied line-up, but the most successful was Ian Gillan, Ritchie Blackmore, John Lord, Roger Glover and Ian Paice.
The band split in 1976 but reformed (with a different line-up) in 1984. Another 10 years of touring and some hits saw them bring American guitarist Steve Morse on board. Since then the band have won a new legion of fans, creating music and continually touring - in fact the wrinkly rockers are known as the hardest touring band in the world.
The Bay City Rollers were a Scottish boyband whose love of tartan and cheesy, cheery songs made them one of the biggest acts of the 1970s. Like other bands of the era the line-up kept changing, but we fondly remember the classic set of brothers Alan and Derek Longmuir, Eric Faulkner, Stuart 'Woody' Wood and Les McKeown.
After huge hits like Bye Bye Baby and Shang-A-Lang, the band's popularity began to dwindle, and by the end of the 70s the classic line-up was no more. Some of the band carried on touring but they never reached the same heady heights and were constantly scrapping. On one tour Les McKeowan and Eric Faulkner ended up brawling on stage!
Straight outta Birmingham, Black Sabbath was founded in 1968 by Ozzy Osbourne, Tony Iommi, Geezer Butler and Bill Ward. Like Deep Purple, they are regarded as being at the forefront of the heavy metal music scene and were voted Greatest Metal Band of All Time by MTV.
Black Sabbath reunited in the summer of 1997, heading the Ozzfest festival tour. The band has since embarked on several additional tours with Ozzy on Vocals, and even launched a new album in 2013.
The Boomtown Rats were big in the late 70s riding on the back of the punk wave that had overtaken the British music scene. Their 1979 song I Don't Like Mondays was a massive international hit - except in the USA where it was boycotted as it was technically about a US school shooting.
Sir Bob is more famous for shouting about poverty than he is for his music nowadays. The band finally hung up their plectrums in the mid-90s. Original members Garry Roberts and Simon Crowe reformed the band in 2008 but Geldof objected to them using the full name and they're now known as The Rats. Not quite as catchy, as far as names go!
Yet another 70s band with frequent line-up changes (none lasting more than two years) Fleetwood Mac were originally formed in the late 1960s. Drummer Mick Fleetwood is the only member to have survived the numerous changes. The band's biggest success was during the Stevie Nicks era in the mid to late 70s, headed by the 1977 release of the classic album Rumours.
The band reformed in 2014 and went on a world-wide tour. The band are currently working on a new album with Christine McVie – an album which may be the last one they ever make…
Cute, fop-haired and with good looks, David Essex was the Zac Efron of his day - an all singing all dancing musical star who all the girls fell for. His curly locks, funky hoop earring and twinkly blue eyes gave him a mysterious air and he stormed the charts with tunes like Hold Me Close and Gonna Make You a Star.
Now married with kids but slightly less hair, Essex has continued to make music and tours regularly. In the last few years he's also appeared on stage in Boogie Nights 2 and Aspects of Love, wowing grannies across the land. He's also done piles of charity work which led to him being awarded an OBE.
Brothers Mark and David Knopfler formed Dire Straits (so named due to their terrible financial position) in 1977 at a time when the British music scene had been dominated by punk and loud, long-haired stadium rockers. Their gentle and unassuming sound proved popular, and their first two albums (which spawned classics like Sultans of Swing) were hugely successful.
In 1995 Mark Knopfler wound the group down and started out on a solo career. The original gang have reformed only one since, for bass guitarist John Illsley's wedding. Knopfler has continually stressed he is not interested in a reunion although he does work regularly with the other members of the band on his solo music.
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