“Wind of Change” is a 1990 power ballad written by Klaus Meine, vocalist of the German heavy metal band Scorpions. It appeared on their 1990 album Crazy World, but did not become a worldwide hit single until 1991, when it topped the charts in Germany and across Europe, and hit #4 in the United States and #2 in the United Kingdom. It later appeared on the 1995 live album Live Bites, on their 2000 album Moment of Glory, with the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra, and on their 2001 unplugged album Acoustica.
The band also recorded a Russian-language version of the song, under the title Ветер перемен (Veter Peremen) and a Spanish version called Vientos de Cambio.
The song is currently the 10th best-selling single of all time in Germany.
The lyrics celebrate the Perestroyka in the USSR and the end of the Cold War.
The Scorpions were inspired to write the song on a visit to Moscow in 1989, and the opening lines refer to the city’s landmarks:
- I follow the Moskva
- Down to Gorky Park
- Listening to the wind of change
The Moskva is the name of the river that runs through Moscow (both the city and the river are named identically in Russian), and Gorky Park is the name of an amusement park in Moscow.
Worldwide, this single sold over 14 million copies, making it one of the top fifty best selling singles of all time.The Scorpions hold the record for the best-selling single by a German artist and band.