The band Wallenstein
, founded in Viersen
Viersen is the capital of the district of Viersen, in North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany.-Geography:Viersen is situated approximately 8 km north-west of Mönchengladbach, 15 km south-west of Krefeld and 20 km east of Venlo ....
in Lower Rhineland
Historically, the Rhinelands refers to a loosely-defined region embracing the land on either bank of the River Rhine in central Europe....
, later based in Mönchengladbach
Mönchengladbach , formerly known as Münchengladbach, is a city in North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany. It is located west of the Rhine half way between Düsseldorf and the Dutch border....
, was a German
Germany , officially the Federal Republic of Germany , is a federal parliamentary republic in Europe. The country consists of 16 states while the capital and largest city is Berlin. Germany covers an area of 357,021 km2 and has a largely temperate seasonal climate...
rock band from 1971 to 1982, which was later ascribed to the so-called Krautrock
Krautrock is a generic name for the experimental music scenes that appeared in Germany in the late 1960s and gained popularity throughout the 1970s, especially in Britain. The term is a result of the English-speaking world's reception of the music at the time and not a reference to any one...
of the 70s.
Wallenstein was founded in the summer of 1971 under the martial name of Blitzkrieg
by the ambitious student of art (at the Art Academy Düsseldorf), Jürgen Dollase, from Viersen. He had already been trained in classical music, playing the piano
The piano is a musical instrument played by means of a keyboard. It is one of the most popular instruments in the world. Widely used in classical and jazz music for solo performances, ensemble use, chamber music and accompaniment, the piano is also very popular as an aid to composing and rehearsal...
and the double bass
The double bass, also called the string bass, upright bass, standup bass or contrabass, is the largest and lowest-pitched bowed string instrument in the modern symphony orchestra, with strings usually tuned to E1, A1, D2 and G2...
, and he had played in skiffle
Skiffle is a type of popular music with jazz, blues, folk, roots and country influences, usually using homemade or improvised instruments. Originating as a term in the United States in the first half of the twentieth century, it became popular again in the UK in the 1950s, where it was mainly...
as well as in jazz
Jazz is a musical style that originated at the beginning of the 20th century in African American communities in the Southern United States. It was born out of a mix of African and European music traditions. From its early development until the present, jazz has incorporated music from 19th and 20th...
formations. In addition, the businessman and band manager, Peter Giehlen (Octopus Productions
) from Mönchengladbach-Hehnerholt, and Corrado Faccioni, Italian buddy and former road manager of Dollase, were involved in the foundation. Wallenstein started as a kind of "test-tube child", because Dollase and Roadie
Faccioni gathered the initial lineup from other bands. The first solo-guitarist of the group, which was only rehearsing at that time, was Wolfgang "Ginger" Steinicke from Erkelenz
- Geology :The Erkelenz Börde is the northernmost extent of the Jülich Börde and is formed from a loess plateau that has an average thickness of over eleven metres in this area. Beneath it are the gravels and sands of the main ice age terrace, laid down by the Rhine and the Meuse...
, today a renowned astronomer
An astronomer is a scientist who studies celestial bodies such as planets, stars and galaxies.Historically, astronomy was more concerned with the classification and description of phenomena in the sky, while astrophysics attempted to explain these phenomena and the differences between them using...
; but the former member of Smiddys Blues Band
was soon replaced by the American William (Bill) Joseph Barone from Philadelphia because Steinicke's studies in physics
Physics is a natural science that involves the study of matter and its motion through spacetime, along with related concepts such as energy and force. More broadly, it is the general analysis of nature, conducted in order to understand how the universe behaves.Physics is one of the oldest academic...
Astrophysics is the branch of astronomy that deals with the physics of the universe, including the physical properties of celestial objects, as well as their interactions and behavior...
Mathematics is the study of quantity, space, structure, and change. Mathematicians seek out patterns and formulate new conjectures. Mathematicians resolve the truth or falsity of conjectures by mathematical proofs, which are arguments sufficient to convince other mathematicians of their validity...
had his highest priority. Jürgen Dollase had already been able to win over Harald Grosskopf from Hildesheim
Hildesheim is a city in Lower Saxony, Germany. It is located in the district of Hildesheim, about 30 km southeast of Hanover on the banks of the Innerste river, which is a small tributary of the Leine river...
, and Dutchman
The Netherlands is a constituent country of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, located mainly in North-West Europe and with several islands in the Caribbean. Mainland Netherlands borders the North Sea to the north and west, Belgium to the south, and Germany to the east, and shares maritime borders...
Gerrit (Jerry) Berkers (now deceased) from Brunssum
Brunssum is a municipality and a town in the province of Limburg, the Netherlands. Brunssum was formerly a center of coal mining in the Netherlands and there are a few active mines remaining in the area...
was taken on board shortly after Bill Barone.
Because the name Blitzkrieg
was already in use by an English band
Blitzkrieg are a heavy metal band from Leicester formed in 1980, consisting of Brian Ross , Ken Johnson , Guy Laverick , Paul Brewis and Phil Brewis ....
(but was often misspelled Blitzkreig
by the British music press), and because the name was far from being politically correct
for the German record labels of that time, the group named itself after the Thirty Year's War commander Wallenstein in early 1972. Also in early 1972, the debut album of the classical or art rockers was released. It had been recorded in the studio of Dieter Dierks
Dieter Dierks is a German record producer mostly known for his collaboration with the rock band Scorpions.- Youth :...
Stommeln is a village in the north-west of Cologne, Germany. It has got over 8000 inhabitants.- Geography :Stommeln is part of the Town of Pulheim. Its most recognisable feature is the old mill.Belonging to Stommeln:Stommelerbusch...
Cologne is Germany's fourth-largest city , and is the largest city both in the Germany Federal State of North Rhine-Westphalia and within the Rhine-Ruhr Metropolitan Area, one of the major European metropolitan areas with more than ten million inhabitants.Cologne is located on both sides of the...
from September to December 1971 and it was titled after the first name of the band. In the same year, the German record label Pilz
released Mother Universe
, succeeding the debut album (also from the Pilz
record label) as fast as lightning (Blitz
). (Rem.: The album cover photo by Harald Grosskopf depicts Dollase's grandmother.)
In 1978, after some changes in the musical style, Dollase replaced all members of the band. Because of their performance in the ZDF
Zweites Deutsches Fernsehen , ZDF, is a public-service German television broadcaster based in Mainz . It is run as an independent non-profit institution, which was founded by the German federal states . The ZDF is financed by television licence fees called GEZ and advertising revenues...
with Ilja Richter
Ilja Richter is a German actor, television presenter, singer and author.- Life :In the 1970s Richter became famous in Germany as television presenter of Disco. As an actor he played several roles in films and in theatre. Richter wrote several books...
in 1979, the band reached place 17 in the German pop charts with their single Charline
. But the single Don't Let It Be
(from the album Blue Eyed Boys
) was also rather successful later and sold very well. From March to June 1981, Wallenstein went on their last tour; the group finally disbanded in 1982.
- Blitzkrieg (recorded in 1971, released in 1972)
- Mother Universe (1972)
- Cosmic Century (1973)
- Stories, Songs & Symphonies (1975)
- No More Love (1977)
- Charline (1978)
- Blue Eyed Boys (1979)
- Fräuleins (1980)
- SSSSS…TOP (1981)