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Michael Schenker on joining Scorpions with Klaus Meine: ‘Rudolf calculated everything’

Michael Schenker has shed light on how his older brother Rudolf masterminded drafting him and Klaus Meine in to join the Scorpions.

In an exclusive clip for Planet Rock, the German guitar virtuoso said that Rudolf was keen to recruit Klaus to the Scorpions and used his teenage sibling as a bargaining chip.

“(Klaus) was Rudolf’s favourite singer but Rudolf can’t really play guitar so he had nothing to offer to get him in his territory so he sent his little brother who was doing pretty well,” Michael explained.

“Klaus, he was a great singer so we had the potential of becoming the next Robert Plant and Jimmy Page or something like that. We were actually playing Zeppelin, Rory Gallagher, Deep Purple and all of that stuff.

“Rudolf was watching it, to see if his vehicle to success was ready. So, I think he probably sacked his two musicians (in the Scorpions at that time) – the singer and the guitarist – and just coincidentally we were rehearsing just next to each other in separate rooms.”

Elucidating further, Michael said: “This is all coming out just now, but it looked normal in those days. The bass player (Lothar Heimberg) came along to say ‘Klaus, Michael, would you like to come over have a jam with us?’ We were rehearsing with our own band and they were so bold ‘hey, would you like to jam with us?’ Taking us out of that room and putting us in there (with them).

“And because the drummer (Wolfgang Dziony) actually he was quite good from the Scorpions – he was actually living next door to us and he started this thing with Rudolf. He was actually quite good and the bass player was amazing. It was definitely a step.”  

He added: “So basically, Rudolf calculated everything. He’s the mastermind of putting something together that he is not actually suitable as a musician but he knew how to dance and make it look like he was playing an important part.

“Basically, really, what he was doing was his vision was to figure out how he can become like The Rolling Stones or Elvis Presley and obviously he couldn’t do it by himself but he was looking for the people that could do it for him.”

Rudolf Schenker and Klaus Meine © PA Images

Michael also spoke about how “pissed off” Rudolf was when he didn’t agree to rejoin Scorpions after he recorded some guitar parts on 1979’s ‘Lovedrive.’

“When I helped him with ‘Lovedrive’ he was very, very pissed off when I didn’t join the Scorpions,” Michael added. “America was going crazy about that situation and when I left – I had to force myself away from the Scorpions as I was only asked to help. But when I did my part they didn’t want to let go.”

Michael Schenker Fest’s first studio album ‘Resurrection’ was released on Friday (2nd March) via Nuclear Blast Records.

Schenker recorded the album alongside producer Michael Voss-Schoen and was joined by the three M.S.G. singers: Gary Barden, Graham Bonnet and Robin McAuley. 

Doogie White (Michael Schenker's Temple Of Rock) also makes an appearance, as well as musicians Steve Mann (guitars, keyboards), Ted McKenna (drums) and Chris Glen (bass). In addition, there are also some guest appearances from Kirk Hammett, Wayne Findlay and Michael Voss-Schoen.

You can order 'Resurrection' right here and watch the lyric video for single ‘Heart and Soul’ here:


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