A‑ha Performs a Beautiful Acoustic Version of Their 1980s Hit, “Take on Me”: Recorded Live in Norway

When the Nor­we­gian syn­th­pop band A‑ha record­ed “Take on Me” in 1984, the song did­n’t meet instant suc­cess. It took record­ing two dif­fer­ent ver­sions of the track, and releas­ing it three sep­a­rate times, before the song man­aged to climb the charts, peak­ing at #1 on the US Bill­board Hot 100 and #2 on the UK Sin­gles Chart.

Since then, the song has enjoyed a pret­ty fine after­life. It has clocked near­ly 500 mil­lion plays on YouTube. You’ll find it on count­less 1980s antholo­gies and playlists. And now you can watch an entire­ly new per­for­mance of the song, which has already gone viral on YouTube. Record­ed this past June in Nor­way, as part of an unplugged con­cert for MTV, this ver­sion is more sub­tle and melan­choly than the orig­i­nal. And, as many Youtube com­menters read­i­ly note, it’s rather beau­ti­ful.

Find more details about the per­for­mance on A‑ha’s web­site.

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Relat­ed Con­tent:

New Order’s “Blue Mon­day” Played with Obso­lete 1930s Instru­ments

1980s Met­al­head Kids Are All Right: New Study Sug­gests They Became Well-Adjust­ed Adults

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Open Culture was founded by Dan Colman.