The Death of Ola Brunkert

Image from Roger Lindqvist's blog -

The world of ABBA was shaken on March 16th, 2008 by the accidental death of Ola Brunkert.  It is fascinating how prominent a news story  his death became considering how few people knew who Ola Brunkert was. One article pointed how Ola played on most of the records of what most people regard as one of the most successful musical acts of all time, so yes that suggests that Ola  made an important if unsung contribution to the world at large.

Ola was ABBA's main live and session drummer. He played on all eight of their studio albums. He played on their first single, "People Need love" and many, but not all of their biggest hits. He played on their 1977, 1979 and 1980 live  tours.  He was born in Örebro, Sweden on 15  September 1946. Before working with ABBA, he worked often  as a jazz drummer but also with acts like Slim's Blues Gang and Science Poption. Aside from ABBA he recorded with Janne Schaffer, Opus III, Ted Gardestad, Björn J:son Lindh, Jerry Williams, Ingemar Olsson, and others. He had recently been  largely retired, and since his wife died, he had been living alone.  He died accidentally on March 16, 2008 at his home near Arta, Majorca, Spain. A spokesman said Brunkert hit his head against a glass door in his dining room, shattering the glass and cutting himself in the neck. He managed to wrap a towel around his neck and left the house to seek help, but collapsed in the garden."

Bjorn Ulvaeus was quoted in the Expressen after Ola's death as saying-that "I remember him as a good pal when we worked together in the mid-1970s. He was an very creative musician who contributed a lot when we toured and worked in studio," "We saw each other very briefly at the Mamma Mia tour premiere in Madrid, that was perhaps five years ago. Before that, we hadn't met in 20 years," says Björn Ulvaeus. "We were not close friends, but I miss him as a tour mate and an extremely good and creative musician. He was one of the best.""He was kind, humble..., a very good friend,"
Former ABBA session guitarist Janne Schaffer said,  "This is incredibly sad. My thoughts go out to his sons who now have lost both their parents".

 One thing I should note , ABBA promised on the ARRIVAL jacket that one day,  they would let us hear Ola sing, but as far as I know we never got to here him sing!!!
(Reprised from ABBA-the Albums) 

interview with ola-


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