Abba were inducted into the American Rock and Roll Hall of Fame yesterday
The Swedish pop band joined British rock bands Genesis and The Hollies, reggae star Jimmy Cliff and Iggy Pop and the Stooges in receiving the honour. Abba stars Benny Andersson and Anni-Frid Lyngstad, who were once married, were in New York for the ceremony, but their fellow band members Bjorn Ulvaeus and Agnetha Faltskog weren-t in attendance.
"I speak for all of us, we are deeply, deeply honoured," said Andersson.
"I am truly very touched by what once started as partnerships a long time ago and that this has brought us here tonight," Lyngstad added. "We did a great job back then. In a way I am not surprised, actually, that we had the influence on other musicians and singers."
Abba shot to fame after winning the Eurovision Song Contest in 1974. They had hits with tracks including Dancing Queen, Knowing Me, Knowing You and Super Trouper, but split in 1982.
At the ceremony held at the renowned Waldorf Astoria hotel, Andersson performed their song The Winner Takes It All on the piano with Faith Hill accompanying him.
Former Genesis lead singer Peter Gabriel did not attend, but his former bandmate Mike Rutherford revealed he was devastated not to be there. "He has a very legitimate and genuine excuse. He`s actually starting a tour," Rutherford said.
Phil Collins, who made his name in the band, did turn up, and praised the "variety" of the groups who were honoured.
The group wereinducted by Trey Anastasio of band Phish, who paid tribute to the lasting impact they have had on the industry.
"They are rebellious, restless and constantly striving for something more," Trey said. "Every musical rule and boundary was questioned and broken. It`s impossible to overstate what impact this band and musical philosophy had on me as a young musician. I`m forever in their debt."
Musicians can only win a place in the hallowedHall of Fame 25 years after the release of their first single. The decision of who should be honoured is made by 600 industry professionals.