Robbie Bachman of Bachman-Turner Overdrive dies at 69
Written by Associated Press on January 16, 2023
NEW YORK (AP) — Robbie Bachman, the drummer for the Canadian hard rock band Bachman-Turner Overdrive that was known for such 1970s hits as “Takin’ Care of Business” and “You Ain’t Seen Nothin’ Yet,” has died at age 69.
His death was announced on social media Thursday by his brother and bandmate, Randy Bachman, who did not cite a cause.
“The pounding beat of BTO has left us,” Randy Bachman wrote. “He was an integral cog in our rock ‘n roll machine and we rocked the world together.”
The Bachman brothers were Winnipeg natives who had been playing music since childhood.
Robbie Bachman first worked with his older brother Randy, a singer, songwriter and guitarist, in the group Brave Belt, which the elder Bachman helped found in the early 1970s after leaving the top-selling act the Guess Who.
The two Bachmans, along with brother Tim Bachman on guitar (later replaced by Blair Thornton) and Fred Turner on bass, formed Bachman-Turner Overdrive in 1973 and sold millions of records over the next three years with their blend of grinding guitar riffs and catchy melodies. “You Ain’t Seen Nothin’ Yet” topped the charts, and the band’s other hits included “Takin’ Care of Business,” “Hey You” and “Roll On Down the Highway.”
One well known fan, Stephen King, adopted the pen name “Richard Bachman” as a partial homage to BTO.
Randy Bachman left the group in the mid-1970s, and gave the remaining members permission to call themselves BTO (But not Bachman-Turner Overdrive so as to distance himself from the band). As BTO, Robbie Bachman and the others continued to tour and record, but their popularity faded and they broke up in 1980.
Over the following decades, the band had sporadic reunions and occasional legal battles, as Randy Bachman and Robbie Bachman fought over royalties and rights to the band’s name. The brothers rarely performed together after the early 1990s, with Robbie Bachman once telling The Associated Press that Randy had “belittled” the other band members and likened them to the fictional parody group Spinal Tap.
In recent years, Robbie Bachman had been semi-retired. Bachman-Turner Overdrive was inducted into the Canadian Music Hall of Fame in 2014.