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What Happened To Milli Vanilli

What Happened To Milli Vanilli

The Rise and Fall of Milli Vanilli

The Rise and Fall of Milli Vanilli

Introduction to Milli Vanilli

Milli Vanilli, a name synonymous with one of the biggest scandals in music history, was a German R&B duo that achieved international fame in the late 1980s. The group was formed by Frank Farian in Munich in 1988 and included Fab Morvan and Rob Pilatus. The duo was known for their distinctive style, which featured spandex shorts, thigh-high boots, and cornrow hair extensions. Their music, including hits like “Baby Don’t Forget My Number” and “Blame It on the Rain,” topped the charts worldwide. However, their meteoric rise was matched by a spectacular fall when it was revealed that they did not sing any of the vocals on their music releases.

Formation and Meteoric Rise

Rob Pilatus and Fabrice Morvan first met at a dance seminar in Los Angeles and later reconnected in Munich. Struggling to find work as backing singers, they were eventually introduced to music producer Frank Farian, who had previously found success with the disco group Boney M. Farian presented them with the song “Girl You Know It’s True,” which they agreed to perform under the condition that they would eventually be allowed to contribute their own vocals. Unbeknownst to them, the final tracks were recorded by other singers, and Pilatus and Morvan were positioned as the faces of Milli Vanilli.

Their debut album, released as “All or Nothing” in Europe and “Girl You Know It’s True” in the United States, was a massive success. It spawned several hits that dominated the charts and led to a Grammy Award for Best New Artist in 1990. However, the duo’s lack of involvement in the actual singing started to raise suspicions.

The Scandal Unfolds

The first public sign of trouble came during a live performance on MTV in 1989, when a technical glitch exposed their lip-syncing. The backing track malfunctioned, revealing that they were not singing live. The incident raised doubts, but the full extent of the deception was not immediately clear to the public. However, the pressure mounted, and in late 1990, Frank Farian publicly admitted that Pilatus and Morvan did not sing on the records. This revelation led to an unprecedented scandal, with their Grammy award being revoked and multiple lawsuits being filed against them.

Aftermath and Attempts to Rebuild

Following the scandal, Farian attempted to rebrand the project under the name “The Real Milli Vanilli,” with the actual singers fronting the group. Meanwhile, Pilatus and Morvan attempted to launch a comeback under the name “Rob & Fab” with limited success. Their careers never recovered from the scandal, and Pilatus struggled with substance abuse and legal issues until his untimely death in 1998.

Fab Morvan, on the other hand, has made various attempts to revive his career in music and media, achieving modest success as a solo artist and public speaker.

Legacy and Recent Developments

The Milli Vanilli scandal remains one of the most notorious in music history, highlighting the issues of authenticity and deception in the entertainment industry. The story has been the subject of various documentaries and media analyses, exploring the pressures and manipulations in the music business. In recent years, there has been renewed interest in the story, with new documentaries and films in development aiming to shed light on the complexities of the scandal.


  • What was Milli Vanilli known for?
    Milli Vanilli was known for their popular songs in the late 1980s and early 1990s, and for the scandal involving lip-syncing and not singing any of the vocals on their albums.
  • Who were the real singers behind Milli Vanilli?
    The real vocals were provided by studio singers such as John Davis, Brad Howell, and others, while Rob Pilatus and Fab Morvan were the faces of the group.
  • What happened to Rob Pilatus?
    Rob Pilatus passed away in 1998 due to an accidental overdose of alcohol and prescription medication.
  • Did Milli Vanilli ever receive any awards?
    Yes, Milli Vanilli won the Grammy Award for Best New Artist in 1990, which was later revoked after the lip-syncing scandal was revealed.
  • Is there a Milli Vanilli movie?
    Yes, there have been several documentaries and a feature film titled “Girl You Know It’s True” is set to be released, exploring the story of Milli Vanilli.

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