Anneke Grönloh

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Anneke Grönloh
Anneke Grönloh color.jpg
Born Louise Johanna Grönloh
(1942-06-07)June 7, 1942
Tondano, North Celebes, Netherlands East Indies (now Indonesia)
Died September 14, 2018(2018-09-14) (aged 76)
Occupation Singer
Years active 1959–2017
Spouse(s) Wim-Jaap van der Laan (1964–2004; divorced)
Musical career
Instruments Vocals

Louise Johanna "Anneke" Grönloh (7 June 1942 – 14 September 2018) was an Indonesia-born Dutch singer. She had a successful career starting in 1959 that lasted throughout the 1960s, and scored a hit with "Brandend Zand", one of the best-selling Dutch songs of all time.


Anneke Grönloh in 2007

Grönloh was born in Tondano, North Celebes, Netherlands East Indies (now Indonesia), and spent her early years in the Japanese-occupied Dutch East Indies in a Japanese concentration camp. Her father, an officer in the KNIL, had been interned before her birth.

After the war, the family moved to the Netherlands, and Grönloh grew up in Eindhoven. At the Gemeentelijk Lyceum (Municipal College) she met and played with Peter Koelewijn and his band Peter en zijn Rockets at parties. In 1959 her career took off after she won a talent show. On 31 August 1964 she married Wim-Jaap van der Laan, a DJ for Dutch radio station Radio Veronica, and in 1965 began singing in the Sleeswijk Revue.[1] Throughout the 1960s she scored hits, especially with "Brandend Zand" (English: "Burning sand"). At the height of her fame, in 1964, Grönloh took part in the Eurovision Song Contest with the song "Jij bent mijn leven" (English: "You are my life"), which ended with a joint tenth place with the Belgian entry, and by the end of the 1960s she had begun an international singing career.

Besides popular music, Grönloh also performed the kroncong genre, singing songs such as "Bengawan Solo", "Boeroeng Kakatua", and "Nina bobo", and also sings jazz, which she claims is her favorite genre.

Singer of the Century[edit]

In 2000, Grönloh was named "Singer of the Century" because of the record-breaking sales of "Brandend Zand". In the same year, she was also a participant on the television program Big Brother VIPS. In 2006 she released Anneke and Friends, a DVD of her theater tours. Later that year she was part of the theater tour "Purple 100", replacing Corry Brokken who could not perform due to illness.

End of career[edit]

Grönloh had retired due to health problems; she played her last show on 26 August 2017.


Grönloh died on 14 September 2018, at the age of 76. Reports indicate that she will be laid to rest in France.[2]


  • "Asmara" (1960, in Indonesian)
  • "Flamenco Rock"
  • "Brandend Zand" (1961) – gold
  • "Paradiso" (1962) – went platinum
  • "Soerabaja" (1963)
  • "Cimeroni" (1963)
  • "Oh Malaysia" (1963)


  1. ^ "Anneke Gronloh – europopmusic" (in Dutch). Retrieved 21 August 2013.
  2. ^ ‘Bengawan Solo’, ‘Asmara’ singer Anneke Gronloh dies Star2 (September 23, 2018). Retrieved on September 26, 2018.

External links[edit]

Awards and achievements
Preceded by
Annie Palmen
with "Een speeldoos"
Netherlands in the Eurovision Song Contest
Succeeded by
Conny Vandenbos
with "'t Is genoeg"