TEN O’CLOCK POSTMAN – SECRET SERVICE
After the unexpected international success of “Oh Susie”, an intense period of hard work followed. Neither the band nor myself would like to be remembered as a “One Hit Wonder”. The problem was that I had a baby daughter at home and also no money. How would I make this work? The pressure was on from all sides. We needed a follow-up!
I simply had to come up with something with something that was at least as good as “Oh Susie”, which was not easy. I tried to write something similar, but it didn’t work out at all. “Hey Johnny” was an ok song, but it was definitely not the song that could match “Oh Susie”. No, none of the new songs were good enough as follow-ups. Some were terrible, some were good, but none stuck out. Night after night after night I sat there alone in the office and played. Sometimes so tired that I literally fell asleep over the piano.
Finally, in order to get a little more feeling, I had a tape from the studio where I recorded the drums from the “Oh Susie” session. Playing the cassette over and over to get some more “guts” while I hammered on the Wurlitzer keys. And wait… Now, it’s coming… a little more “old-time” harmonics with tonica, minor parallel, subdominant and dominant as in the old 50s. Could it really work? Oh, Susie was much more “modern” musically…
Soon enough I was back at Björn’s and as usual found myself on his sofa. I did not even fall asleep until Björn exclaimed: “Hey buddy, what do you think about this?
“Ten O’clock Postman, bring me this letter…”
Of course, This was the perfect lyrics! Ola and Uffe agreed when they later read the text and we recorded it quickly in the studio. Tony Lindberg’s wonderful 60s guitar sound fitted perfectly. When we later that night came to the studio’s coffee room for a break, the radio was on. Then we heard “Dancing Queen” with ABBA for the first time. What a masterpiece! We felt like a quarter band in comparison.
But I’ve learned that you should never compare music. “Ten O’clock Postman” became a huge hit throughout Europe. Together with “Oh Susie”, it lasted 55 weeks on the German top list, and Wolfgang Petri made a German version “Ganz Oder Gar Nicht”, which for a long time peaked the German list.
In the Soviet Union, “Ten O’clock Postman” was the most loved of all our songs, though everyone thought we sang “Tri Pionjera”, that is, three pioneers, the name of “Lenin’s scout children”! That’s the way it is today. Many still love “Ten O’clock Postman”, not at least in the former Soviet countries.