The band was originally formed by Robb Weir (guitar), Brian Dick (drums), Rocky (real name Richard Laws, bass), and Jess Cox (vocals). Rapidly building a local following from gigging relentlessly, they were first signed up by local independent label Neat Records before MCA gave them a major record deal. After several singles, they released their first album Wild Cat in 1980. The album reached the 18 in Britain on the first week of its release.

Subsequently John Sykes (later of Thin Lizzy, Whitesnake) was added as second guitarist. Jess Cox then sought pastures new, and was replaced by Persian Risk vocalist Jon Deverill. This line up released the Classic LP Spellbound in 1981. With Deverill's arguably superior vocals and greater experience, the album was critically acclaimed and loved by the fans. Battling against the odds and a lack of record company support the band quickly recorded there third album, the under-rated Crazy Nights. Poor production did not help the sound quality but this album still has some excellent tracks. Shortly after recording and just before the start of a European tour John Sykes decided to leave the band so the band approached ex-Penetration guitarist Fred Purser who had to learn the set in two days flat before touring.

Tygers Of Pan Tang's fourth album The Cage (1982) was their most accomplished effort and things looked promising. Unfortunately the record company support was lacking and were not prepared to promote the band unless they agreed to play more cover recordings (following the band's hit with "Love Potion No. 9"). The band tried to break free from their contract, but MCA's demands exceeded the willingness of any other record company to pay to free the band and the band broke up in frustration.

However, this was not the end of the band. During the 1998 Wacken Open Air festival, Jess Cox joined the band Blitzkrieg on stage, playing three old Tygers songs. The audience's response was so positive, a year later the band were invited, to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the Tygers of Pan Tang and the 10th Wacken Open Air. Brian Dick and Rocky were unable to join the band, but the Tygers (now Jess Cox and Robb Weir, backed up by Blitzkrieg guitarist Glen Howes, bassist Gavin Gray and drummer Chris Percy) performed nevertheless a memorable show. Recording tapes of their performance gave rise to the Live at Wacken album.

In 2001, Robb Weir decided to reform the band, despite being the only original member. Robb wanted to keep the name alive and play for the fans. The new Tygers line up were Dean Robertson (lead guitar), Brian West (bass) and Craig Ellis (drums) who remain to this day and are approaching the longest ever serving members of the band together with Robb. They released Mystical through Z-Records and in 2004 Noises From The Cathouse.

Later the same year, Richie Wicks left and was replaced by Italian vocalist Jacopo Meille from the Rock band Mantra.

2007 is to be both a challenging and exciting time for the Tygers, an ambitious plan has been set to raise both the activity and profile of the band. New material has been written and there will be at least two releases during this time. A 5 track EP aptly named Back & Beyond will be available from November and will include two new tracks Bury the Hatchet and Live for the Day. The full album will be available from Feb/Mar 2008 and will include 11 new tracks. The band has returned to its roots and the influences of Spellbound can be clearly heard.

The band is also now actively playing live and tour dates are being added weekly. There has been so much interest in the band with the revival of Classic Rock from promoters, venues and record companies. This has motivated the band to write the best new material since 1981. This will be the album Tygers fans have been waiting 25 years for.

Source: www.tygersofpantang.com