Iranian rock

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Iranian rock refers to rock music produced by Iranian artists.


Farhad (1944–2002) was one of the pioneers of rock music in Iran, emerged by the 1960s.

Early years[edit]

Iranian rock music roots in American and European rock music, with influences from traditional forms of Iranian music and remarkable events such as the Shiraz Arts Festival. It was developed in the 1960s and 1970s, with the emergence of artists such as Farhad,[1] Kourosh Yaghmaei, Black Cats,[2] and Scorpio (not to be confused with the German Scorpions). Soon it became popular among the young generation, especially at the nightclubs of Tehran.[3]

After the 1979 Revolution[edit]

Following the 1979 Revolution, the music industry experienced some period of encounter with prohibition in Iran.[4]

During the late 1990s, president Khatami advocated a more open cultural atmosphere in his domestic policies. As a result, a number of new singers emerged from within the country.[4][5] Since the new administration took office, the Ministry of Ershad adopted a different policy, mainly to make it easier to monitor the industry. The newly adopted policy included loosening restrictions for a small number of artists, while tightening it for the rest. However, the number of album releases increased.

In post-revolutionary Iran, live concerts are heavily restricted by the government. Rock bands might obtain permission to perform on live stage, provided their music is approved by the Ministry of Ershad. Most of the rock bands who cannot obtain permission rely on the Internet and underground scenes.[6]

127 were the first Iranian underground rock band to tour the United States and play at the festival of South By Southwest.[7][8]

In 2008, power metal band Angband signed with German record label Pure Steel Records[9] as the first Iranian metal band to release internationally through a European label. They had collaborations with the well-known producer Achim Köhler.[10][11]

Notable figures[edit]

The following samples a list of homegrown Iranian rock bands and individual artists, mostly active in Iran. Some are officially sanctioned, others continue to operate unofficially and independently due to the restrictions imposed by the Ministry of Ershad.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Farhad Mehrad's Official Website". Retrieved 2016-01-06.
  2. ^ "Starting with Shabpareh – Iranican". Archived from the original on 2016-03-04. Retrieved 2016-01-06.
  3. ^ "'اسکورپیو' در آپارات". BBC Persian.
  4. ^ a b "Rock Rolls Once More in Iran As Hard-Liners Back Pop Revival". The Wall Street Journal. 2 June 2000. Retrieved 9 April 2010.
  5. ^ "Roll Over, Khomeini! Iran Cultivates A Local Rock Scene, Within Limits". The Washington Post. 23 August 2001. Retrieved 9 April 2010.
  6. ^ The Guardian (4 June 2014). "Iran's rock stars and their underground scene". Jai Brodie for the Tehran Bureau.
  7. ^ Rodrigo Davies, BBC News, Iran's underground rock scene thrives despite censors, retrieved 10/2/2012
  8. ^ Martin Hodgson, The Guardian (Apr 22, 2007)
  9. ^ Blabbermouth. "Iranian Metal Band ANGBAND Signs With Germany's PURE STEEL RECORDS". Archived from the original on 12 June 2008. Retrieved June 8, 2008.
  10. ^ Blabbermouth. "ANGBAND: New Album Release Date, Track Listing Revealed". Retrieved Sep 16, 2010.
  11. ^ "ANGBAND - Three New Songs Streaming". BW&BK. Retrieved September 10, 2012.

External links[edit]