Zebra galloped out of New Orleans in the mid-'70s.
The trio concocted their moniker from a Vogue magazine cover and soon won over the East Coast with expert Zep-like pomp-metal. Zebra's confident self-titled debut went gold, thanks to the air play of excellent singles "Tell Me What You Want" and "Who's Behind the Door." Vet producer Jack Douglas (Aerosmith, Cheap Trick) also helmed the follow-up, No Tellin' Lies. Not as strong or cohesive as the first effort, Lies fell directly into the delete bins. No longer a novelty, leader Randy Jackson's soaring falsetto was trampled underfoot by the sudden invasion of myriad Zeppelin clones. The esoteric 3.V took a pop approach, but received no promotion and also went unnoticed. Always a strong presence on-stage, Zebra released a live recording in 1990 with two great unreleased gems. Jackson, a redoubtable talent, then formed China Rain, another ill-timed attempt; this hair metal outfit was immediately laid to rest by the burgeoning alternative avalanche. Next, Jackson and drummer Guy Gelso helped bassist Felix Hanemann finish an unfortunate solo album, Rock Candy. Jackson's contributions are the only high point of The Sign, the sole appearance of an anonymous supergroup. ~ Doug Stone