Who is in the Swedish Music Hall of Fame?

Who is in the Swedish Music Hall of Fame?
Photo: Gustav Wiking
Everyone knows about Abba and Avicii. But there's more to Swedish music - and each year ten Swedish artists are welcomed into the Swedish Music Hall of Fame. So who are the new artists, just barely added?

Since the Swedish Music Hall of Fame opened in 2013, ten Swedish artists are inducted each year. The obvious ones are Abba and Roxette, who were welcomed to the Hall of Fame in 2014. 

"The basic idea behind the Hall of Fame is to pay tribute to the diversity of Swedish music and to build bridges between generations," Charlotte Wiking, manager of the Swedish Music Hall of Fame, explained at the press conference announcing the new members.

New inductees to the Hall of Fame are under a lot of pressure: They must have debuted onto the music scene at least 20 years ago, and must have made a lasting contribution to Swedish popular music, inspiring innovation and development on the musical scene.

The jury also pays attention to diversity, making sure to include a variety of genres. It's not all about the dancefloor, but also about opera, jazz, rock, and reggae. 

So who are the stars of the Swedish music scene? SI News went to find out on February 12th, as the new list was announced.

1. Neneh Cherry

Neneh Cherry was born in Stockholm and moved to London when she was 14. She quickly started making music and became a worldwide hit in the late 1980s, with singles like Buffalo Stance playing all around the globe. Neneh was before the Spice Girls and before Lily Allen – but paved the way for this style everywhere in future generations.

2. Jussi Björling

Johan Jussi Björling was a tenor opera singer born in 1911, who passed away in 1960. He was one of the most famous opera singers of the 20th century, and performed frequently at the Metropolitan Opera in New York, as well as in London, Milan, and of course Sweden.

3. Peps Persson

Although Peps has made a few albums in English, he is best-known in Sweden.  He was one of the first big Swedish reggae and blues performers, and made Swedish covers of famous tunes by the likes of Bob Marley. 

4. Ulf Lundell

Ulf Lundell has been called "Sweden's Bob Dylan" – and for good reason. He is a central character in Swedish rock music and has many a hit on the Swedish radio. His lyrics frequently express classic Swedish sentiments – such as feeling at home in nature.

5. Yngwie Malmsteen

Yngwie Malmsteen is a heavy metal guitarist who became a huge figure in Swedish and global rock. He plays neo-classical metal, popular during the mid 1980s,  and has worked with many well-known bands, winning a Grammy nomination.

6. Gullan Bornemark

Gullan Bornemark is a beloved Swedish musician and lyricist who writes primarily children's songs – songs which every Swedish child has heard. At age 87 she is still full of attitude, and one of the most lively and charming characters in Swedish music history.

7. Alice Babs

Alice Babs, who passed away last year, was best known for her work as a jazz singer – but she was also Sweden's first entrant in the massive Eurovision Song Contest, back in 1958. She worked with Duke Ellington and other international jazz celebrities.

8. Carola

Carola was the Celine Dion of Sweden in the 1980s, and has sung everything from pop to disco to church music to classical. Today she is still a popular singer and songwriter, and her album Främling (Stranger) is still the best-selling album in Swedish music history.

9. Anders Burman

Anders Burman was not a singer himself, but was one of the most influential Swedish music producers. He produced albums with Alice Babs and Cornelis Vreeswijk, both of whom are also in the Hall of Fame, and many other big Swedish artists, including the Jailbird Singers:

10. Robyn

Finally, Robyn is one of the best-known Swedish artists at the moment – but she has been active  on the music scene since 1994. With recent hits like "Indestructible" and "Call your Girlfriend", her singles have become dancefloor hits around the world.

"Robyn makes the world dance to the sound of their heartbeats," the jury explained. Take a listen – do you agree?