I have followed this legendary American, pop-rock band for many years now since I was just a kid. Cheap plug, if you haven’t checked out my previous tribute piece to Toto check it out here.
Tuesday, October 8th, 2019 was a night, this fan will never forget. Toto was LIVE at the Ryman Auditorium, in Nashville, Tennessee. Music City is a very fitting place, for great music to be played there. The famous church of music. That was famous for Country, Bluegrass, Rock, and Blues. Every genre of music, you can think of.
This evening we witnessed some of the best musicians ever. We are talking about the band Toto. This was the Toto’s 40 Trips Around the Sun Tour in the United States. It was the band’s 40th Anniversary celebration. They were playing hits from their album 40 Trips Around the Sun. They released tracks from 1978 to 1993 with three unreleased tracks. This was the next leg out of that tour. The current lineup features original members Steve Lukather on guitar and vocals, and Steve Porcaro on keyboards, Lenny Castro on percussion, Shannon Forrest on drums, Warren Hamm on saxophone, vocals, and harmonica, Shem Von Schroeck on bass, and Joseph Williams provides the lead vocals. Williams was with the band for their Fahrenheit and Seventh One albums.
Man they did impress, let me tell you. From Luke’s amazing tone and guitar playing to Shannon Forrest’s impeccable groove, these guys tore the house down all night. It was a night founding member and drummer Jeff Porcaro would be proud of. Steve Porcaro and Dominique Taplan were a great tag- team on keys. Shem’s bass playing and high vocal range is stellar. Warren Ham showed he can sing and play anything, the man has pipes. Castro’s percussion playing is phenomenal.
They performed a catchy new tune, that would remind you of that classic Toto sound, just in a new way, the song is called Alone. It is featured on the 40 Trips Around The Sun Album. Steve Porcaro then gave us the story behind a song they wrote for Michael Jackson’s Thriller album. You may have heard of it. It’s called Human Nature, incredible cover. Speaking of covers. Lukather played a tribute to his first guitar hero, George Harrison of the Beatles, with the big hit song, While My Guitar Gently Weeps. Beautifully sang and played, imminent version of Georgy Porgy and I’ll Be Over You. Great harmonies by Shem and Warren. They had to play the hits we love, and have to sing along with. I soaked up the moments, like every other fan in the Ryman.
Hits like Rosanna and Make Believe both from the Toto 4 Album were fantastic. Joseph Williams singing I can’t Stop Loving You on the acoustic portion of the show was sensational. They played classic after classic all night with hits such as Hold the Line and English Eyes. Since they were in Nashville, Toto had to show their Country style, with a song called No Love, that featured Lukather on Guitar and Warren Hamm owning the harmonica.
Africa was all it was meant to be and more. The crowd was energetic and hot all night. Just an incredible atmosphere.
David Paich was missed. Paich had to take time off from touring due to illness.
I’m a huge fan of Toto. After this incredible night and reliving their musical influence live my fandom couldn’t be any higher. If Toto is in your town, do not miss them! Buy the ticket, go to the show, and enjoy some classic rock and roll.