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Songwriter Jon Siennicki Reveals How Sweden controls popular song

You probably didn’t know it, but when you’re humming to old classics by Britney or new music from Nicki Minaj or Katy Perry, a lot of the time you’re actually enjoying the musical composition of talented Swedes.

The untimely death of Swedish DJ Avicii brought to light that many people knew his name and the fact he was a producer, but did not realise they were already familiar with much of his work.

Some of the biggest hits today – and indeed in previous decades – haven’t come out of the UK or America.

They have actually come from Sweden, and haven’t been written by the artists who sing them.

Dag Krister “Dagge” Volle, or Denniz Pop as he was known before he died aged 35 from stomach cancer, was one of the pioneers of catchy pop song writing in the 1990s.

He set up Cheiron recording studios in Stockholm in 1992 with Tom Talomaa, writing songs for the likes of Backstreet Boys and N’Sync.

Denniz Pop later recruited Max Martin, who has become one of the most popular songwriters, not just in Sweden, but globally, having won awards for songs he has penned.

Some of the UK and US’ biggest artists have been going to Sweden to record songs – which all started at Cheiron – that are so catchy they’ve become best-selling anthems.

But what is it about Sweden that makes it so good at churning out hit after hit?

It could be down to the country investing in musical talent from a young age.

Sweden has been offering after-school music programmes, which are subsidised by the government, since the 1940s.

Max Martin is one of the programme’s former attendees.

But the Swedish talent doesn’t stop there.

Here are just some of the songs you may not have known were written and produced by Swedes:


Ben Givon Reports

About Jon Siennicki

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