The lead singer of the rock group Scorpions this week dismissed rumors claiming the band’s iconic power ballad “Wind of Change” was written by the CIA as a propaganda tool during the Cold War.
The 1990 song by the West German group was a runaway hit in Europe around the time of the collapse of the Soviet Union. It includes the lyrics: “The world is closing in/Did you ever think/That we could be so close, like brothers/The future’s in the air.”
Journalist Patrick Radden Keefe produced an eight-part podcast on the song that was released this week on Spotify. He interviewed Scorpions frontman and “Wind of Change” songwriter Klaus Meine about the rumor.
Meine, in an interview with the rock and metal news outlet MetalCastle published Thursday, laughed off the conspiracy theory.
“I thought it was very amusing and I just cracked up laughing. It’s a very entertaining and really crazy story but like I said, it’s not true at all. Like you American guys would say, it’s fake news,” Meine said.
“It’s a podcast, and there will be a lot of people who will get into this. It’s a fascinating idea, and it’s an entertaining idea, but it’s not true at all,” Meine said.
In an interview about the podcast with The New York Times, Keefe said that a former intelligence officer said it was plausible the CIA could have taken to music for propaganda purposes, and that there was a strong possibility it might still.
He said he had first heard the rumor around 10 years ago, calling it “inescapably absurd.”
“That’s the reason I hadn’t been able to cut this idea loose — the contrast between the serious aspect of it and the ridiculousness lurking at the edges,” he said.