Rutger Gunnarsson, the bass player on every Abba album and tour, has died in Sweden at age 69.
Gunnarson worked with Björn Ulvaeus pre-Abba in the Hootenanny Singers. Post Abba he continued to work with Ulvaeus including Bjorn’s rock opera ‘Chess’. His credits also appear on records for Celine Dion, Westlife, Elton John, Adam Ant and Gwen Stefani.
In a statement on their Facebook site Abba posted:
“Our friend, the bass player, guitarist, arranger and producer Rutger Gunnarsson (born 1946) has suddenly passed away in his home in Stockholm at the age of 69.
“His unique way of playing his bass, his beautiful string arrangements and thorough work as a producer for countless Swedish and foreign artists and musicians have colored pop music from the early 70s up until today.
“Rutger got the most attention through his long and intimate cooperation with Björn Ulvaeus, Benny Andersson and ABBA, participating in all of their albums, numerous singles, tours, movies and musicals. Here at the museum we are so grateful for having him here not to long ago, walking around with that special smile of his.
“Rutger’s three children, Rickard, Mimmi and Joanna, all mourn their father along with a music world that suffers the loss of a great musician, colleague and a dear, dear friend.
“Keep plying your magic bass where ever you are Rutger.
“Rest in peace!”
Never miss a story! Get your free Noise11.com daily music news email alert. Subscribe to the Noise11 Music Newsletter here