Sunday, August 9, 2015

Tora Tora - Walkin' Shoes

Tora Tora (named after the Van Halen song, not the movie) was a Memphis blues rock band that came close to a major breakout at the end of the 1980's.  The group consisted of Anthony Corder (vocals), Keith Douglas (guitar), Patrick Francis (bass), and John Patterson (drums).

After recording an independent EP, Tora Tora generated some local buzz, which led to a recording contract with A&M.  The band's debut LP, 1989's Surprise Attack reached #47 on the charts, while the single "Walkin' Shoes" hit #86, thanks in part to some airplay on MTV.  The band also landed a song ("Dancing With a Gypsy") on the soundtrack to Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure.

However, Tora Tora's second album did not come out until 1992, right as grunge was changing the rock scene.  That album (Wild America) did not break the top 100, turning Tora Tora into more of a working band.  They were subsequently dropped by their label in 1994, after recording their third album (which was not released until 2011).  After losing their recording contract, the band broke up.

The group re-formed in 2008 and have been performing and releasing material since that time.

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