Woman from Tokyo

Album: Who Do We Think We Are (1973)
Charted: 60

Songfacts®:

  • Deep Purple started recording their Who Do We Think We Are in Rome in July 1972. At this point, the band had yet to tour Japan, but they had three shows scheduled there for August: two in Osaka followed by one at the Budokan arena in Tokyo. Drawing on Japanese imagery ("the rising sun," "an Eastern dream"), they concocted a story of a lovely lady from that country who drives them wild.

    Rome was sunny and relaxing, so the band spent a lot of time in the swimming pool in lieu of working. There was also a sound problem in the studio, and the only track they got out of those sessions was "Woman From Tokyo." The rest of the album was done in Germany.
  • This is one of the group's most popular songs, but they never had much affinity for it. They didn't start playing it live until they re-formed in 1984 after their 1976 split.
  • In 1973, this was issued as a single, achieving a modest chart position of #60 in America. It aged well and got a lot of airplay on AOR and Classic Rock radio stations, keeping it alive. The stretched out "Toe-Key-Oh" became a bit of an earworm and helped embed the song into many an auditory cortex.
  • On some compilations from the '70s, this song is listed as "live," which Roger Glover insists is a lie, since they never did the song live in that decade.

Comments: 1

  • Daniel Miller from Houston, TxI've always thought this song was about heroin. The lyrics strongly suggest it, as does the music, especially the middle section.
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