THE ROCK 'n' ROLL RPMs
Tommy Lane & Mike Davis
CWA Tag Team Champions
AWA Southern Tag Team Champions
Written by Adam Zimmerman
The Rock 'n' Roll RPMs are an often-overlooked tag team. They made a name for themselves mostly by traveling throughout different promotions in the Southeastern United States. The RPMs started to team together in the mid-80s when Rock 'n; Roll teams where in abundance. Perhaps that is why they have become overshadowed by some of their "rocking peers."
The difference between the RPMs and other teams at the time like The Rockers and the Rock 'n' Roll Express is that the RPMs almost exclusively worked heel. As Razor Ramon might say, they were always the "bad guys." They also didn't shy away from wrestling their rock and roll counterparts as well, battling teams like The Fantastics and The Rock 'n' Roll Express throughout territories like World Class Championship Wrestling and Memphis' CWA promotion.
It was in the CWA that Davis and Lane first struck gold, winning the CWA Tag Team Championship once and the AWA Southern Tag Team Championship a combined 5 times. They were later called up to the big show (no, not The Big Show) and competed in the AWA, being featured in the AWA's only pay-per-view, SuperClash III. In an interesting matchup, they teamed with Cactus Jack and took on the Guerrero brothers (Hector, Mando, and Chavo Sr.)
Davis and Lane also made the trek to Puerto Rico a few times and competed for Carlos Colon's WWC promotion. This is one of the few places where they were actually considered fan favorites and they feuded with teams like The Zambuwie Express and Ron and Chicky Starr. This also brings up a childhood memory for me...
Back in the day, I used to rent a lot of VHS tapes from the "mom and pop" video store we had around here, Speedy's Video. One day, always having had the bloodlust that I do, I decided to rent a WWC tape: "The Best Of The Bloody, Bloody Matches Of The Caribbean Volume 1". One of the most disturbing scenes on the whole video is of Ron and Chicky Starr interrupting an "awards ceremony" for Mike Davis and then smashing a glass covered Rock 'n' Roll RPMs picture over his head. That scene itself is not so disturbing but what follows is graphic footage of Mike Davis getting a massive gash on his shoulder stitched up in the locker room. Apparently, that glass wasn't "rigged" and Ron Starr just legitimately bashed a glass picture frame over Davis' head.
The RPMs eventually made their way into the Mid Atlantic area during the transition period of Jim Crockett Promotions becoming WCW. Here, they were mostly used as enhancement talent for more established teams at the time. Their team name was also officially shortened to simply "The RPMs" while teaming in WCW and even the guys themselves weren't allowed to (or chose not to) go by the names they'd been wrestling under for years. Mike Davis and Tommy Lane were now known as "DJ" and "LP".
Eventually, the two went their separate ways with Mike Davis forming a team with his brother Tom known as the "Dirty Davis Brothers" and Tommy Lane forming a team with "Big" Bobby Jones known as "The New RPMs". I think we all know by now, any tag team that's ever known as the "new" anything, never works out. The original team of Davis and Lane, though, are a classic tag team that should always be remembered.