EUROPEAN ARENA TOUR WITH PERFORMANCES PLANNED IN 29 VENUES
Tour Kicks Off May 30th in Brussels, Belgium at Forest National and Marks Start of Worldwide Excursion That Will Bring Toto To Venues Across The Globe
Los Angeles — Toto has announced an extensive European tour that will hit 29 venues beginning May 30 in Brussels, Belgium. Countries on the itinerary include Belgium, Luxembourg, Germany, France, Netherlands, Italy. Switzerland, Poland, Denmark, Sweden, Norway, and Finland, where the tour will wrap in Helsinki on July 6 at Icehall. In the months ahead in celebration of the band’s 35th anniversary, Toto will announce an additional leg across the globe, which will include dates in The United States.
Few ensembles in the history of recorded music have individually or collectively had a larger imprint on pop culture than the members of Toto. As individuals, the band members’ imprint can be heard on an astonishing 5000 albums that together amass a sales history of a HALF A BILLION albums. Amongst these recordings, NARAS applauded the performances with more than 200 Grammy nominations. Band members were South Park characters, while Family Guy did an entire episode on the band’s hit “Africa.” As a band, Toto sold 35 million albums, and today continue to be a worldwide arena draw staging standing room only events around the globe. They are pop culture, and are one of the few 70s bands that have endured the changing trends and styles, and 35 years in to a career enjoy a multi-generational fan base.
It is not an exaggeration to estimate that 95% of the world’s population has heard a performance by a member of Toto. The list of those they individually collaborated with reads like a who’s who of Rock & Roll Hall of Famers, alongside the biggest names in music. The band took a page from their heroes The Beatles playbook and created a collective that features multiple singers, songwriters, producers, and multi-instrumentalists.
Historically, in 1970 David Paich met Jeff Porcaro and his brothers Steve and Mike. He was asked to and joined his band that played under the moniker The Merciful Souls, which soon became Rural Still Life. The band resembled a cross between Blood, Sweat & Tears and Mad Dogs & Englishmen, and they blazed a trail across LA’s San Fernando Valley. Herein began the musical bond between Paich and the Porcaro brothers that would last for decades.
When David and Jeff left high school they joined Sonny and Cher, which is where they met a bass player from Texas David Hungate, and synth prodigy Steve Porcaro took over the band. Virtuoso gunslinger guitarist Steve “Luke” Lukather joined, and it was here he met the other Porcaro brothers and Paich. They dropped “rural” and became Still Life. Paich, Jeff Porcaro, and Hungate soon thereafter recorded Boz Scaggs’ Silk Degrees, and in turn the three future Toto members made musical history. The sound they collectively created with Scaggs went on to sell over 5 million albums in the United States alone, and established Paich as a bonified writer. The recording also delivered his first Grammy Award of many, and gave him the confidence to pursue their next endeavor Toto. Playing live shows with Boz, Dave and Jeff brought brother Steve Porcaro back into the picture, and they toured all over the U.S Luke joined Boz shortly after as the record companies were beginning to take notice, and the career that has stretched decades under the name Toto began.
With a line-up solidified in 1976 with drummer Jeff Porcaro, keyboardist David Paich, guitarist Luke, keyboardist Steve Porcaro, bassist David Hungate and singer Bobby Kimball, Paich set about writing what became the eponymous debut album. The young band aspired to hear their own music on the radio, and in 1978, “Hold The Line” ran up the Billboard charts peaking at #5, delivering a multi-platinum debut. Worldwide, the song hit #1 in territories across the globe. The band was nominated for a Best New Artist Grammy,, and “Hold The Line” was the first of a parade of enduring, evocative singles that have become the soundtrack for generations. Songs that include “Africa,” “Rosanna,” “99,” “I’ll Supply The Love,” “Make Believe,” “I Won’t Hold You Back,” “I’ll Be Over You,” “Georgy Porgy” and many others capture the depth that define the deep connection the band’s 17 albums continue to have with the global fan base.
The band’s fourth album titled TOTO IV followed Hydra and Turn Back, in 1982. The record exploded onto the charts, producing the smash hits “Africa,” “Rosanna,” and “I Won’t Hold You Back” which spent ten weeks at #1 at AC, alongside being a massive hit at pop radio, rocketing the band to instant international stardom. TOTO IV went multi-platinum and yielded 5 singles. In 1983, Toto reaped the benefits of their hard work and commercial success at the Grammy Awards, winning six different categories, including the coveted Album of the Year for TOTO IV and Record of the Year for “Rosanna.” The record also won awards for Producer of the Year and Best Engineered Recording, while “Rosanna” also earned Best Instrumental Arrangement Accompanying Vocals and Best Vocal Arrangement. In addition, Luke won for Best Rhythm & Blues Song – “Turn Your Love Around” – which he co-wrote with Jay Graydon and Bill Champlin. TOTO IV yielded accolades flooding their way, and over the next two decades, the band continued to thrive worldwide, with occasional changes in personnel.
In February 2010, the band announced that Mike Porcaro was diagnosed with Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS), also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease. They planned a tour to generate funds to support the care of their brother, and to raise the public’s consciousness about the disease. As they begin to prep for their first world tour in over a decade that includes a U.S. itinerary to be announced imminently, this dual commitment continues to be on their collective agenda. Toto World Tour 2013 will feature Luke, Paich, Steve Porcaro on keyboards, Drummer Simon Phillips (The Who, Judas Priest, David Gilmour), bassist Nathan East (Eric Clapton, Stevie Wonder, Phil Collins), and singer Joseph Williams, who sang the hits “Pamela” and “Stop Loving You” on the worldwide platinum release The Seventh One (1988). Williams is also featured on the platinum certified Fahrenheit (1986), Toto XX (1998) and recorded “Bottom of Your Soul” on Falling In Between (2006).
With the absence of both Mike and Jeff Porcaro, the success of 35 years can be bittersweet. Tragedy struck in 1992, when Jeff died of heart failure. Luke recalls, “He was not only my band-mate, but my hero. He was a few years older than us, and already in Steely Dan when we were still in high school. My goal as a kid was to someday be able to play with musicians of his caliber, and that of David Paich. Looking back, I truly feel honored to have been gifted with the amazing talent surrounding me and the band over the past decades through today.” For Paich, he offers, “Playing helps me get through the heartbreak of not having Mike and Jeff with us. Whenever Toto is on stage, playing the songs we created together, I see them both sitting there. I’m reunited with my old friends again.” As they set the stage for a two-year celebration of the band’s 35th Anniversary, Paich adds, “When we were younger, we played with a rock attitude – even though we were playing sophisticated music. Now I think our songs and our performances bring out more of the subtleties, and more of the concern we have for the world and for other people. As you age and feel the love and support of so many fans over the years, your feelings for your audience deepens.”
With over 35 years together and thousands of credits and accolades to their names, Toto remains one of the top selling tour and recording acts in the world. Collectively and individually, the band has played on nearly every major hit record of the past quarter century, placing their distinctive stamp of excellence all over CD shelves around the world. Toto are the benchmark by which many artists base their sound and production, and they continue to transcend the standards set by the entire musical community, being simply synonymous with musical credibility. In the new media age, the band has enjoyed an on-line avalanche of impressions with views approaching an astonishing BILLION streams via official and unofficial videos posted. The video for “Africa” approaches 20 million views alone, while a live performance from Amsterdam nears 10 million.
TOTO continues to raise awareness for ALS, commit energies towards fundraising for Police and Fire Departments of California and the Fallen Heroes initiative (http://www.fallenheroes.org/), and help the United Nations in their humanitarian endeavors through music.
The European itinerary includes appearances in:
5/30 Brussels, Belgium Forest National
5/31 Esch Alzette, Luxembourg Rockhal
6/01 Sankt Goarshau, Germany Hi Rock Festival
6/02 Inzell, Germany Hi Rock Festival
6/04 Hamburg, Germany Stadtpark
6/05 Berlin, Germany Zitadelle
6/07 Montereau Faul, France Montereau Confluences Festival
6/08 Amsterdam, Netherlands Ziggo Dome
6/09 Lille, France Zenith
6/11 Caen, France Zenith
6/12 Tours, France Grand Hall Parc Expo
6/13 Paris, France Zenith
6/15 Toulouse, France Zenith
6/16 Marseille, France Le Dome
6/17 Clermont Ferra, France Zenith
6/18 Grenoble, France Summum
6/20 Milan, Italy Ippodromo Del Galoppo
6/21 Roma, Italy Ippodromo Capannelle
6/22 Padua, Italy Gran Teatro GEOX
6/23 Zurich, Switzerland Hallenstadion
6/25 Lodz, Poland Atlas Arena
6/27 Copenhagen, Denmark Falkoner Theater
6/28 Stenungsund, Sweden Stenungbaden
6/29 Moss, Norway Verket
6/30 Trondheim, Norway Torvet
7/02 Rattvik, Sweden Dalhalla
7/03 Orebro, Sweden Stortorget
7/05 Jakobstad, Finland Jakobstad Centralplanen
7/06 Helsinki, Finland Icehall