Zdenko Runjić

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Zdenko Runjić (26 October 1942 – 27 October 2004) was a Croatian songwriter based in Split.[1] In his long career, he established himself as one of the most prolific and most popular songwriters of the former Yugoslavia and Croatia.

Runjić was born in Slavonski Brod (at the time the Independent State of Croatia). Many of his songs were inspired by the folk traditions of Dalmatia.

The songs became classics and Runjić helped the careers of many notable Croatian musicians such as Oliver Dragojević and Doris Dragović. He was especially successful at the prestigious Split Music Festival. He wrote almost 700 songs which sold several million copies in the form of albums and singles. More than 200 songs were written for Oliver Dragojević alone.

He was also a successful businessman and music producer. He owned a record company called Skalinada which became one of the most prominent record companies of Croatia.

However, his success also brought him many enemies and in 1993, following the dispute with the Split Music Festival organisers, he founded the rival music festival called Melodije Hrvatskog Jadrana (Melodies of the Croatian Adriatic) and it soon became the key music festival of the country.

On 27 October 2004, Runjić died in Split of a stroke whilst recovering from the aftermath of a heart attack.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ International Who's Who in Popular Music 2002. Page 610.

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