Benny Andersson

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Benny Andersson (2012)

Göran Bror Benny Andersson (born December 16, 1946 in Stockholm ) is a Swedish musician , songwriter and record producer . He became known as a member of the ABBA group .


Childhood and youth

Benny Andersson (2008)

Andersson was born in 1946 in the Vasastaden district of Stockholm, the son of the civil engineer Gösta Andersson and his wife Laila. The family moved shortly afterwards to the quieter suburb of Vällingby , where Andersson grew up with a sister. He received his musical education mainly at home from his father and grandfather, who were passionate accordionists and played traditional Swedish folk tunes. On his sixth birthday he was given an accordion, with which he had his first appearances shortly afterwards, together with his father and grandfather, the three of whom called themselves Benny's Trio at the beginning. A piano followed at the age of ten. After a few piano lessons, Andersson taught himself to play as an autodidact.

Starts as a musician and member of the Hep Stars

Andersson wrote his first pieces while still at school. At that time he played together with his childhood friend Christina Grönwall in the band Elverkets Spelmanslag, which performed in the local youth club. In March 1964 Elverkets Spelmanslag took part in a talent competition, in which the Hep Stars also appeared. On this occasion Andersson met their singer Svenne Hedlund , who was looking for a new organist . Hedlund was enthusiastic about Andersson's organ playing, so that the then up-and-coming rock group Hep Stars hired him as a keyboardist in October 1964 . Andersson and Björn Ulvaeus got to know each other during a concert in Linköping in June 1966, and a close friendship and working group developed between them that has continued to this day. This initially rather fleeting acquaintance was deepened three months later after a party in Västervik: Both wrote their first song, Isn't It Easy to Say , which was recorded a short time later by the Hep Stars and was released as a record.

Andersson became a permanent member of the group and became Sweden's teen idol in the years that followed. Initially, the group only recorded cover versions of the rock 'n' roll music popular at the time . However, when they ran out of material, Andersson began to contribute his own musical material. From 1964 to 1969 Andersson recorded 20 top ten hits with the Hep Stars. The Hep Stars were Sweden's most successful pop group in the 1960s. Andersson's compositions Wedding and Sunny Girl were among her success numbers . In the spring of 1969, the group reoriented themselves musically, and Andersson left the band. At that time, he and his former girlfriend, the singer Christina Grönvall, already had two children, a son (* 1963) and a daughter (* 1965).

ABBA (1969–1982)

Benny Andersson (2013)

At the end of 1968 Andersson met the jazz singer Anni-Frid Lyngstad and initially became her producer. Together with Björn Ulvaeus he wrote the song Peter Pan for her . Ulvaeus' and Andersson's work together was very fruitful, which led to a constant collaboration as songwriters for others and ultimately to the formation of their own band called Björn and Benny. Andersson continued to pursue solo projects and was named "Sweden's Best Contemporary Composer".

On October 6, 1978, Andersson and Anni-Frid Lyngstad married in Stockholm-Lidingö after living together for almost ten years. They were divorced on November 26, 1981. One week after the divorce, Andersson married the Swedish TV presenter Mona Nörklit and two months later became the father of a son again (* 1982). Andersson and his partner Ulvaeus continued to work as producers, composers and musicians for others during the ABBA years. Only with the international breakthrough in 1976 did both concentrate fully on the work within the group. In 1979 and 1980 Andersson again produced two albums for Finn Kalvik . In 1982 the members of ABBA ended their collaboration, but the band never officially broke up.

According to ABBA (1983 to today)

After ABBA broke up, Andersson and Ulvaeus wrote a musical against the backdrop of the Cold War , for which Tim Rice wrote the textbook. In 1984 the musical Chess was completed and was a great success in Great Britain . In the USA, like the ABBA titles, it was less successful. Another musical by Andersson and Ulvaeus followed in the 90s, the emigrant drama about Kristina från Duvemåla , which so far has only been available in a Swedish version and since 2009 also in an American version. After the book was presented to him for another musical project in which 24 to 26 ABBA titles were embedded in a story, Benny adapted the lyrics and has since supervised the productions of Mamma Mia around the world, which took place in 1999 at London's West End Premiered. When it was made into a film in 2008, he also took over the musical direction, re-recorded the ABBA titles with the actors with former ABBA studio musicians and a large orchestra and can also be seen briefly in the film.

Andersson owns the Swedish record company Mono Music AB , which also released the complete recording of Kristina von Duvemala , as well as the Stockholm 4-star boutique hotel Rival and a riding stable near the Swedish capital. Today Andersson and Nörklit live in a suburb of Stockholm. He founded the Benny Andersson's Orkester ("BAO!"), Which mainly plays his instrumental pieces with folk music character. The first of seven studio albums so far was released in the summer of 2001 and was an instant hit in Sweden. In addition to the instrumental pieces, there are also two songs sung by Helen Sjöholm . Björn Ulvaeus wrote the lyrics for it. On the following albums BAO på turné from 2006 and BAO 3 from 2007 Helen Sjöholm is also represented with several songs, partly solo, partly with Tommy Körberg, who has also worked on Kristina från Duvemåla and the new edition of the musical Chess på svenska and also the Often her duet partner was. On September 26, 2008, Andersson was awarded an honorary doctorate from Stockholm University for his services to the preservation of Swedish folk music . In 2002 he was honored with the title of professor by the Swedish government for his ability to reach people all over the world with his music.

In July 2009 the album Story of a Heart was released . The title song is the first new song written in English together with ABBA partner Björn Ulvaeus in 15 years, apart from the promo song 2nd Best to None for his rival hotel in Stockholm. For the wedding of the Swedish Crown Princess Victoria and her groom Daniel Westling , Andersson and Kristina Lugn composed the classic hymn work Vilar glad i din famn (“Blissful in your arms”). It was premiered on June 19, 2010 in Stockholm's Church by the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra and two choirs after the newlyweds exchanged rings. On June 8th 2011 the BAO album O Klang och jubletid was released in Sweden. On November 14th, 2012 the album Tomten Har Akt Hem was released with traditional Swedish Christmas carols. On November 27th, BAO in a Box, a compilation of all previously released albums plus two DVDs, was launched on the Swedish market. On February 8th, 2013 the new musical Hjälp sökes premiered in Stockholm. However, this production is not a pure musical like Chess and Kristina von Duvemala , but a play with vocal interludes. Andersson composed eight songs for the stage version with Ulvaeus. The two ex-ABBA members also worked on a studio version of the musical, which was released on September 4, 2013.

Awards and honors



Benny Andersson's Orkester

Hep Stars

Benny Andersson & Björn Ulvaeus

Studio albums (solo)

year title Top ranking, total weeks, awardChart placementsChart placements
(Year, title, rankings, weeks, awards, notes)
1987 Klinga mina klockor - - - - SE6th

(10 weeks)SE
First published: November 1987
1989 November 1989 - - - - SE13

(7 weeks)SE
First published: November 1989
2009 Story Of A Heart - - - UK29 (3 weeks)
SE5 (11 weeks)
First published: June 2009
2017 piano DE9 (13 weeks)
AT25 (3 weeks)
CH24 (4 weeks)
UK12 (6 weeks)

(22 weeks)SE
First published: September 2017


year Title
Top ranking, total weeks, awardChart placementsChart placements
(Year, title, album , rankings, weeks, awards, notes)
2009 Story Of A Heart
Story Of A Heart
- - - UK83 (3 weeks)
First published: June 2009



Agnetha Fältskog

  • My Very Best (2 CD) (2008)
  • That's Me - The Greatest Hits (CD) (1998)

Ainbusk Singers

  • Älska Mej (CD, EP) (1993)
  • Från När Till Fjärran - Live (CD) (1993)
  • Lassie (7 ″ single) (1990)

Amanda Seyfried

  • Gimme! Gimme! Gimme! (CD single) (2008)

Anni-Frid Lyngstad

  • Anni-Frid Lyngstad (LP) (1971)
  • Frida (LP) (1971)
  • Frida Ensam (CD, LP) (1975)
  • Fernando (7 ″ single) (1976)
  • Frida (4 CD, 1 DVD) (2005)
  • Tre Kvart Från Nu (CD) (2010)

Arne Lamberth

  • Våra Käraste Psalmer 1 (LP) (1972)
  • Våra Käraste Psalmer 2 (LP) (1973)

Barbara Dickson

  • Gold (CD, LP) (1985)

Benny Andersson

  • Klinga Mina Klockor (CD, LP, MC) (1987)
  • November 1989 (CD, LP) (1989)

Benny Andersson & Orsa Spelmän & Dalarnas Spelmansförbund & Åsa Jinder & Peter Hedlund

  • Fiolen Min (Svenska Spelmanslåtar) (CD) (1990)

Benny Andersson Band

  • Story of a Heart (CD) (2009)

Benny Andersson's Orkester

  • Benny Anderssons Orkester (CD) (2001)

Benny Anderssons Orkester & Helen Sjöholm

  • BAO! (CD) (2004)
  • Du Frälste Mig I Sista Stund (CD single) (2007)
  • Sommaren Du Fick (CD single) (2009)

Benny Anderssons Orkester & Helen Sjöholm & Tommy Körberg

  • BAO 3 (CD) (2007)
  • BAO In Box (6 CD, 2 DVD) (2012)
  • BAO På Turné (CD) (2006)
  • Nu Mår Jag Mycket Bättre (CD single) (2008)
  • O Klang Och Jubeltid (CD) (2011)
  • Tomten Har Åkt Hem (Julmelodier) (CD) (2012)

Benny Anderssons Orkester & Tommy Koerberg

  • Fait Accomplit (CD single) (2007)

Bjorn Skifs

  • The Arbiter (I Know The Score) (7 ″ single, 12 ″ maxi) (1984)

Björn Ulvaeus & Benny Andersson

Brita Borg

  • Ljuva sextiotal (1969)

Elaine Paige

  • Heaven Help My Heart (7 ″ single, 12 ″ maxi) (1985)
  • Nobody's Side (7 ″ Single, 12 ″ Maxi) (1984)

Elaine Paige & Barbara Dickson

  • I Know Him So Well (7 ″ Single, 12 ″) (1984)

Emma Hardelin

  • Innan Gryningen (CD single) (1999)

Finn Kalvik

  • Aldri I Livet (7 ″ single) (1981)
  • Here In My Heart (7 ″ single) (1981)
  • Kom Ut Kom Fram (LP) (1979)
  • Natt Og Dag (LP, MC) (1981)


  • Another You, Another Me (7 ″ Single, 12 ″) (1985)
  • Det Bästa Med Karin Och Anders Glenmark (CD) (2005)
  • Gemini (CD, LP) (1985)
  • Geminism (CD, LP) (1987)
  • Just Like That (7 ″ single, 12 ″) (1986)
  • Mio Min Mio (7 ″ single) (1987)
  • Slow Emotion (12 ″ maxi single) (1985)
  • TLC (7 ″ single) (1987)
  • Wild About That Girl (7 ″ single) (1987)


  • Happy End (7 ″ single) (1976)

Gösta Ekman & Kent Andersson & Dan Ekborg & Johannes Brost & Lakke Magnusson

  • Fru Vennermans Sång (CD single) (1994)

Gugge Hedrenius Big Blues Band

  • Blues Of Sweden (LP) (1972)

Gustaf Sjökvist's Kammarkör & Storkyrkans Kör & Kungliga Filharmonikerna & Orsa Spelmän

  • Vilar Glad. I Din Famn (CD single) (2010)

Helen Sjöholm

  • Hemma (CD single) (1997)

Hootenanny Singers

  • Evert Taube På Vårt Sätt (LP) (1974)
  • Våra Vackraste Visor (LP) (1971)

Josefin Nilsson

  • Heaven And Hell (7 ″ single, 12 ″, CD single) (1993)
  • High Hopes And Heartaches (12 ″ single, CD single) (1993)
  • Shapes (CD, LP) (1993)
  • Surprise, Surprise (CD single) (1993)
  • Where The Whales Have Ceased To Sing (CD single) (1993)

Lena Andersson

  • 12 Nya Visor (LP) (1972)

Mireille Mathieu

  • Bravo Tu As Gagné (7 ″ single) (1981)

Murray Head

  • One Night In Bangkok (7 ″ single, 12 ″ EP) (1984)
  • Pity the Child (7 ″ Single, 12 ″) (1985)

No artist

  • Fågelsång I Sverige (CD) (1990)

Orsa Spelmann

  • Ödra (CD) (1998)
  • Orsa Spelmän (CD) (1988)

Per Myrberg

  • Sommarnatt (Per Myrberg Sjunger Taube) (CD) (2003)
  • Vals Ombord (CD single) (2003)

Svenne & Lotta

  • 2 (LP) (1975)
  • Bang En Boomerang (7 ″ single) (1975)
  • Oldies But Goodies (LP) (1973)

Svenska Ryttarlandslaget & Tommy Körberg

  • Upp Till Kamp (12 ″ single) (1990)

Ted Gärdestad

  • För Kärlekens Skull (7 ″ single, CD single) (1993)
  • Franska Kort (LP, MC) (1976)
  • Gonna Make You My Angel (7 ″ single) (1974)
  • Helt Nära Dig (8 CD) (2009)
  • Låt Kärleken Slå Rot (7 ″ Single) (1981)
  • Rockin 'n' Reelin '(7 ​​″ single) (1975)
  • Stormvarning! (CD, LP, MC) (1981)
  • Ted (CD, LP, MC) (1973)
  • Ted Gärdestad (4 CD) (2011)
  • Undringar (CD, LP, MC) (1972)
  • Upptåg (CD, LP, MC) (1974)

The Rivals

  • 2nd Best To None (CD single) (2009)

Tommy Koerberg

  • Anthem (7 ″ single, 12 ″) (1984)
  • Gränslös. Det Bästa Med Tommy Körberg (2 CD) (2003)



Individual evidence

  1. ^ Carl Magnus Palm: Bright Lights, Dark Shadows . London, 2001, p. 71 f.
  2. ^ Carl Magnus Palm: Bright Lights, Dark Shadows . London, 2001, p. 74.
  3. ABBA. The special issue, Rock Classics 10 (2013) p. 14.
  4. ^ Carl Magnus Palm: ABBA. The Complete Recording Sessions. P. 6.
  5. Message on
  6. The 100 Greatest Songwriters of All Time. Rolling Stone , August 2015, accessed August 7, 2017 .
  8. a b Chart sources: DE AT CH UK SE
  9. Awards: SE


Web links

Commons : Benny Andersson  - Collection of images, videos and audio files