Movie star Harpo
Song Title: Movie star
Date of release: 1975
Description: ” Movie star ” is by Harpo ( Jan Harpo Torsten Svensson ), the Swedish pop star. The song was written by Jan Harpo Torsten Svensson. Production for the single was by Bengt Palmers. Bengt also has worked as a film composer and scriptwriter with movie credits including a 1991 drama starring Bjorn Skifs called Joker.
He also appeared on the Swedish talent show Fame Factory as a jury member. Using the name Ben G.T. Palmers, he has worked on Hollywood productions in the US.
The song was released in 1975 by record labels DJM in the United Kingdom and EMI in the rest of Europe. DJM, also known as Dick James Music, was an independant record label started by Dick James in the 1960’s. ” Movie star ” was taken from Harpo’s Album of the same name.
Harpo began his career towards the end of the 1960’s acting in a children’s theatre. He started to pen songs when touring round his native Sweden. Harpo signed a contract with Stig Anderson, the manager of Swedish super group ABBA in 1972.
Harpo was to work with ABBA’s Benny Andersson and Björn Ulvaeus on an Swedish language Album of children’s songs, however it didn’t work out and Harpo was released from his contract. At this point he joined EMI and began working with producer Bengt Palmers.
Harpo’s now famous pop song ” Movie star ” was recorded on the 27th of February 1975. Again another connection with ABBA was made when Anni-Frid Lyngstad, also known as just Frida, provided backing vocals on ” Movie star “. It is often thought that another member of ABBA, Agnetha Fältskog, also sings backing vocals on the track, however the second backing vocals are by Lena Ericsson and not Agnetha Fältskog.
The song is essentially about someone who thinks they are bigger than they really are, it has been said that Harpo wrote the lyrics about a friend of his who was acting arrogantly around him.
Harpo mentions in the lyrics that whoever the song is directed at works in a grocery store and is not part of the ” Jet set ” or has a ” private lear jet “. He is using the lyrics of the song to put down the arrogance of the person. Harpo also mentions that ” So you went to Sweden to meet Ingmar Bergman. But he wasn’t there. Or he just didn’t care “.
This is a reference to the Swedish award-winning film director, Ingmar Bergman. He directed over 60 films and documentaries and is still considered to this day to be one of the most influential directors in the industry, Ingmar passed away in 2007.
In the accompanying music video Harpo can be seen in the background mimicking one of the greats of the silver screen and one of the most famous actors of all time, Charlie Chaplin. Harpo even uses a cane as a prop and dances in the background in a Chaplin style.
” Movie star ” was a commercial success for Harpo. In his native Sweden the song reached Number One and spent a total of 48 weeks on the chart there.
It also reached Number One in Norway, Austria, Germany and Switzerland. In the United Kingdom the song entered the UK chart on the 17th of April 1974 and reached a peak of number 24.
BillBoard Highest Chart Position: N/A
UK Highest Chart Position: 24
Other Countries Highest Chart Positions: Switzerland 1, Germany 1, Austria 1, Netherlands 3, Belgium 3, Sweden 1, Norway 1, New Zealand 9, Ireland 13
Official Website: Harpo-svensson.de
FaceBook Page: Facebook.com/Harpo
Wikipedia Page: Wikipedia.org/Harpo