Killer Dwarfs Announce 'Still Standing Tall' Tour

By Sefany Jones, Contributing Editor
Thursday, August 14, 2003 @ 4:31 PM

Killer Dwarfs Announce First U

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Legendary Canadian hard rock quartet Killer Dwarfs proudly announces the 2003 'Still Standing Tall' tour, featuring all members of the 'classic' Killer Dwarfs lineup -- Russ, Mike, Darrell, and Bad Ronbo Dwarf.

This event will mark the band's first USA tour dates since 1992's ‘Method to the Madness’ tour, which resulted in sold out shows and rave reviews from fans and critics alike.

Slated to kick off this September in Cleveland, Ohio, the tour will last several weeks with an itinerary of performances traversing the Midwest, Texas, Southeast, and throughout the eastern seaboard. As markets and venues are still being finalized, tour dates will consistently be posted online at www.killerdwarfs.com as they become confirmed.

Amidst the growing list of hard rock acts returning to the touring circuit, Killer Dwarfs fans in the USA have been hoping for the past several years that the Dwarfs would someday return to American soil. Interest swelled when the band, after a several year hiatus, regrouped in their native city of Toronto with the intent of performing and recording a long-awaited live album. The "classic" line up of founding members Russ Dwarf (vocals) and drummer Darrell Dwarf, together with guitarist Mike Dwarf and bassist Bad Ronbo Dwarf, reunited onstage in 2001 with a stellar performance, forever captured in the resulting Reunion of Scribes live album and DVD. These four musicians, all of whom comprised Killer Dwarfs' most successful period (1985-1992), have been eager to respond to fans' requests for concerts south of the Canadian border.

Formed in 1981 by Russ and Darrell, the Killer Dwarfs released their self-titled debut album in 1983. The award-winning band established a solid following in Canada while achieving modest worldwide sales.

The breakthrough in the United States came when San Antonio-based radio personality Joe Anthony started spinning their album on a regular basis, much to the delight of hard rocking Texans. This planted the seeds for what would result in Killer Dwarfs receiving a lot of attention South of Canada's border.

Mike Dwarf joined the band in 1984, followed by Bad Ronbo Dwarf less than a year later. With the "classic" Dwarf line up now in place, the band kept touring and writing songs for what would be compiled to become the album Stand Tall, a gem in the world of indie rock. A tour of Texas brought the band to American soil for the first time in July 1986 to rave reviews and sold out shows.

Released in 1986 by Maze/A&M in Canada and Grudge in the USA, Stand Tall was embraced by American Rock radio. The first single, "Keep the Spirit Alive," was an anthem of the times. The accompanying video was added to regular rotation on MTV and the newly born Much Music. By the spring of 1987, the video became the most requested video on MTV, setting a record that would take years to overcome. It still holds the record for MTV's most-requested independent video of all time. A second video for the title track was greeted with similar accolades. This wide exposure allowed the group to tour coast to coast in the US and Canada with such acts as Saxon and Accept, selling an unprecedented 80,000 copies of Stand Tall. It also led to serious interest from a number of American record labels.

Later that year, the Dwarfs signed a worldwide record deal with Epic Records and hit the studio with acclaimed producer Simon Hanhart. The result was the album Big Deal. Released in 1988, the album spawned the single and video "We Stand Alone" plus several tracks ("I'm Alive," "Startin' to Shine," "Tell Me Please") that became staples of hard rock radio and live shows for years to come. Killer Dwarfs launched into a club tour of North America, and landed an opening spot for Iron Maiden's sold-out tour of Great Britain. The tour climaxed with shows at Wembley Arena and the Hammersmith Odeon in London.

The next year, Killer Dwarfs moved operations from Toronto to LA to record Dirty Weapons with award-winning producer Andy Johns (Rolling Stones, Led Zeppelin, Rod Stewart.) Released in 1990, the resulting album sported "Doesn't Matter" -- the band's first radio hit in the USA. The song went to #1 in thirteen cities, including two major stations in Los Angeles. The title track ("Dirty Weapons") also became a smash and a standard on MTV's Headbanger's Ball program. Headlining club dates and performing at sold out shows with such acts as Dio and Michael Schenker across the continent suggested even a brighter future for the hard working band. Later that year, Dirty Weapons received a nomination for Canada's prestigious Juno award.

Mike Dwarf left the band in 1991. The band recruited guitarist Gerry "Dwarf" Finn and continued recording their 1992 album Method to the Madness with Andy Johns back at the helm. The singles "Hard Luck Town" and the wistful "Driftin' Back" secured rock radio and video airplay that landed the band a North American tour with Pantera and Skid Row. Not long after, changes in the music business saw melodic hard rock and metal acts taking a back seat to the Grunge movement. Like many of their contemporaries, Killer Dwarfs found themselves without a record label or outlet for their genre of music. The band performed in their hometown of Toronto in the spring of 1995, which was to be their last until August 2001.

Since reuniting, the Dwarfs have been playing non-stop throughout Canada, headlining festivals, theatres and clubs, as well as performing alongside such acts as Skid Row, Firehouse, and the legendary Nazareth.

To date, Killer Dwarfs remain a world-class rock band. The brisk sales of their re-released albums Killer Dwarfs, Stand Tall, Big Deal, and Dirty Weapons -- together with the recent Reunion of Scribes - Live CD and DVD -- steels their resolve to deliver on the tour fans have been demanding for years. "The Dwarfs are prepared to take on any stage or audience," states singer Russ Dwarf. "This is something that is near and dear to our band and all of our fans. We're excited for the opportunity to reconnect with old friends and to show new fans and a younger generation what the Dwarfs are all about."

Along with Rush, Triumph and Helix, they are one of the few Canadian hard rock acts to achieve international success. If ever a time was right for Killer Dwarfs to re-surface in the USA, it is the present. Mike Dwarf sums it best: "It's time to show everyone that we are still a kick-ass rock band from the Great White North."

The wait is over. The time is now… to GIVE 'ER!!!!

09/16/03 Lakewood, OH Hi-Fi Club
09/17/03 West Springfield, VA Jaxx Night Club
09/19/03 Valparaiso, IN McCool's
09/20/03 South Barrington, IL Penny Road Pub
09/27/03 San Antonio, TX* Sunken Gardens (w/ Queensryche & Y&T)
10/03/03 New Port Richey, FL Bourbon Street Night Club

Additional info: http://www.killerdwarfs.com/

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