Scorpions are a German rock band founded in 1965 in Hannover by Rudolf Schenker. It is one of the most famous and longest existing rock bands in the world, and the first non Anglo-Saxon rock band that achieved success with international importance. The group become synonymous with melodic heavy metal, including powerful rock ballads. This sound permanently embodies the identity of the Scorpions, they are one of the groups which identify the specific sound of rock music in the 1980s. The line-up of the period 1978–1992 is the most successful incarnation of the group and includes Rudolf Schenker (rhythm guitar), Klaus Meine (vocals), Matthias Jabs (basic guitars), Francis Buchholz (bass) and Herman Rarebell (drums).
In the early years of the band, with guitarist Uli Jon Roth part of the line-up, the music of the Scorpions was defined as hard rock. After the departure of Ulrich Roth in 1978, Rudolf Schenker and Klaus Meine managed to take control of the group, which gave them almost all the power in composing music and writing lyrics. Matthias Jabs joined in 1978 and with him playing melodic rock and the influence of producer Dieter Dierks, Scorpions changed their sound to melodic heavy metal, gradually mixed with lyrical powerful rock ballads. Over the next decade the group achieved influence approval from music critics and considerable commercial success with albums Animal Magnetism (1980), Blackout (1982), Love at First Sting (1984), World Wide Live (1985) and Savage Amusement (1988).
Their best-selling album Crazy World contains the song “Wind of Change”, a symbolic anthem of the political changes in Eastern Europe in the late 1980s and early 1990s and the fall of the Berlin Wall. It is one of the best-selling singles in the world with over fourteen million copies sold. The Scorpions are one of the world’s best-selling bands of all time with over 100 million recordings sold. They released five albums, one compilation and six singles reaching number one on the charts in different countries. Albums, singles, compilations and video releases of theirs have reached 200 times gold, platinum and multi-platinum status in different countries.
Rolling Stone magazine describes them as “the heroes of heavy metal”, MTV called them “Ambassadors of Rock”. The band was ranked number 46 on VH1’s Greatest Artists of Hard Rock program. “Rock You Like a Hurricane” is also number 18 on VH1’s list of the 100 Greatest Hard Rock Songs. “Still Loving You” on 22nd place among the greatest ballads. They received prestigious awards such as three World Music Awards, a star on the Hollywood Rock wall, and a presence in the permanent exhibition of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. In 2015 the group celebrated its 50th anniversary.