ABBA drummer Ola Brunkert: biography and photos
Ola Brunkert. This man's name says absolutely nothing to not only the average music lovers, but even most . ABBA fans! And on the one hand - it is quite understandable why it is so: he always remained in the shadows, never appeared on album covers and singles, and on stage all the attention was focused on the legendary Swedish four... And yet, if you look at this situation from the other side, such obscurity is an absolute injustice. After all, from the very beginning of the cult quartet's journey, Ola was their the unspoken fifth member…
Take another look at any ABBA liveThe drummer has toured with them for most of their relatively short career and has appeared on every record, including their first single. The drummer has toured with them for most of their relatively short career, and has appeared on every record they've released, including their first single "People Need Love" - a song that was released when the band itself was still called Björn & Benny, Agnetha & Anni-Frid! Brunckert also participated in the recording of the hit with which ABBA won Eurovision, but after the split of the project he finally faded into the shadows... Sometimes it seems that even the musicians themselves have forgotten about him! But it is not quite so...
Early years and first beginnings: meeting the "secret" drummer
So who is this Ola Brunkert, and where did his journey as a drummer even begin? Well, actually, unfortunately, because he's always been "in the shadows."journalists have never been particularly interested in him. Ola never gave interviews, so his biography is very scarce... And yet - some details are worthy of attention.
Ola was born on September 15, 1946, in the city of Örebro, Sweden. His childhood can hardly be called any remarkable: school, friends... Everything like everyone else. However, from a young age the boy had a passion for music, and in particular for the drum kit. Already in high school, Ola knew that he wanted to connect his life with the drums. And so it went. His first band was Slim's Blues Gang - not very popular and known only to Swedish fans. Then Ola joined Science Poption, a psychedelic band from Stockholm, which is remembered by the general public for its hit "Lady Of Leisure".
And then Brunkert decided to start his own project, which became a jazz-rock band Opus III with guitarist Janne Schaffer. In the end, however, it was as a session drummer that Ola made a name for himself in the industry: in addition to ABBA, he participated in the recordings of many other Swedish musicians, including Jerry Williams.
Way with ABBA
And yet, we are all here today only because Ola has made a name for himself as a regular ABBA session drummer. Perhaps this is the brightest and most attractive page in his creative biography, which made his name more or less famous. Yes: he was not an official member of the band, and his face never graced the covers of their albums... His place on the stage remained in the shadows, and journalists were not in a hurry to ask him about his past and future plans... But Ola Brunkert was the key musician supporting the band on their way to fame.
He has traveled a long way with the members of ABBA in their career (as a quartet). He can be heard playing on the quartet's first single "People Need Love"as well as the cult hit. "Waterloo." - the track with which the band won the Eurovision Song Contest and became a chart star!
Ola was involved in the recording of each album He toured with ABBA halfway around the world, from Australia and North America to Japan!
The last time the five met in the studio was during the recording of the single "One of Us.". It was 1981, and soon the Swedish quartet would announce their split... It seemed that ABBA didn't need Brunckert anymore. He could find a new, no less interesting project - with his undeniable talent, and the fact that for so many years he had collaborated with the kings of disco, it seemed an incredibly easy task. But something went wrong...
End of story
Shortly after the breakup of ABBA, Ola bought a house on the MallorcaHe lived there for the rest of his life. Brunckert chose solitude and peace - as if the collapse of the project had "unleashed" him. How all these years his life was going - well, probably well! In any case, he was out of reach of the press - and not particularly interesting to them.
It is known that Brunkert had a wife, but in 2007 the woman was gone. Who would have thought that soon the drummer himself would also be gone... It happened in the 2008 a year ago. The cause is still unclear, but everything is written off as an accident. So, quietly and unnoticed by the world, the one, whose game was played by millions, went away. Well: perhaps Ola himself wanted to continue living "in the shadows"....
When this grim news hit the media, Benny Andersson and Bjorn Ulvaeus were not left out. Both men praised Brunkert for his contribution not only to their brand, but to the music industry as a whole. In particular, Ulvaeus said:
"I remember him as a good friend when we worked together. He was a very creative musician who contributed a lot when we toured and worked in the studio. And he was a wonderful person..."