The Godfather of Power Metal who founded three influential metal bands: Gamma Ray, Helloween, and Unisonic.
He started out playing in a band called Gentry, alongside another influential metal musician, Pat Siek.
He was also in Iron Savior.
He grew up in West Germany, in the shadow of the Cold War. He married Gabi Hansen in 1994 and the couple had two children before divorcing in 2006.
He plays a customized guitar modeled on the one Randy Rhoads played.