Transcript: Transcript Inside Toto: Keyboardist Steve Porcaro’s Musical Story

Welcome to A Breath of Fresh Air with Sandy Kaye. Hello and welcome to the show. Many of you already know that A Breath of French Air features some of the best musical artists from the 60s, 70s and 80s, telling their own stories in their own voices.


You’re probably also aware that I just love to take your requests, so if there’s someone you’d like to hear from, just send me a message through the website Now today my guest is a founding member of the Grammy-winning, platinum-selling rock band Toto. He’s songwriter, keyboardist Steve Pocaro, who had huge pop hits with songs like Hold The Line, Rosanna and Make Believe. He also co-wrote Human Nature on Michael Jackson’s $30 million-selling Thriller album.


The band Toto comprised Steve’s brothers, Jeff and Mike Pocaro, along with David Page, David Hungate, Steve Lukather, Bobby Kimball, Fergie Fredrickson and Joseph Williams. Each has a unique story, but the tale of the Pocaro brothers is particularly interesting. Jeff Pocaro was the drummer extraordinaire.


Sadly, he passed away in 1992 from a heart attack. Then there’s Mike Pocaro, the bassist. He joined Toto in the 80s.


Unfortunately, he battled ALS for a long time before he passed away in 2015. Lastly, there’s youngest brother Steve Pocaro, a keyboard wizard. He added those magical melodies to Toto’s music and co-wrote some of their biggest hits, like Africa.


The moonlit wings reflect the stars that guide you toward salvation I stopped an old man along the way hoping to find some old forgotten words or ancient melodies He turned to me as if to say, hurry boy, it’s waiting there for you Gonna take the last of you There’s nothing that a hundred men or more could ever do Born in Connecticut, Steve’s musical roots run deep in his family tree, but I’ll let him tell you about it. I was a horrible student on piano. Every time it would get hard, I would easily get distracted.


I think I had some undiagnosed attention deficit stuff even then. We didn’t even have that around then. Right, exactly.


And you got it? Oh, big time. And I would just let it go. You know, lessons would start, I’d realize that I wasn’t ready for a lesson, so I’d cancel.


And then another week would go by, and I’d cancel, and I would just stop taking. But my dad was quite a prolific teacher, and he was known as being a really strong drum teacher. And he was always bartering with fellow studio musicians, would always come to him and ask them to teach their kids drums.


And if it was a keyboard player, of which there were many, he would say, sure, you want to teach my kid? And that was the thing, is I never gave up completely. I’d always be willing to try again to start with another teacher. You know, I was never a great student in any way, shape, or form.


But I think that kind of wound up making me this unique thing. We kind of came to L.A. pretty late. My dad was 36 years old.


This is in 1966. My dad moved his wife and four kids from Connecticut to be a freelance studio musician. You know what I mean? It was a very risky proposition.


But he did well really right away. And I’ll never forget, it was a huge relief for my dad, was after a couple of years of being here, he got the Glen Campbell Show. It was a TV show that he was in the band, so it was steady work.


Steve’s dad was Joe Porcaro. As mentioned, he was a well-known jazz drummer who played sessions for legends like Boz Skaggs, Barbra Streisand, Stan Getz, Frank Sinatra, The Monkees, Gladys Knight, and Madonna. When I was coming out of high school and I saw both, my brothers did so well right out of school as far as doing big-time sessions right away.


And we all knew we all wanted to be studio musicians. There was no plan B. You know, we all were going to be musicians like our dad. And studio musicians were our heroes, along with The Beatles and with other pop bands.


But our day job, for sure, what we were going to do right off the bat was to be studio musicians. Steve always looked up to big brothers Mike and Jeff, especially as the two older boys honed their skills. The pair were quickly recognized for their exceptional talent and in no time became sought-after session players.


Steve, on the other hand, couldn’t quite compete with his brother’s prowess, so he found himself another role. I really dug into the synth thing. I saw that a lot of those guys didn’t know much about synthesizers.


It was brand new at the time, wasn’t it? It was so brand new at the time. And all of a sudden, just started getting gigs programming for these great keyboard players. So I didn’t wind up being in competition with them so much.


I kind of wound up being part of it. Yeah, so you found a niche and you explored that. Exactly, exactly.


I really exploited that niche. Steve became known in music circles as the expert on the synthesizer. And all of a sudden, he, like his brothers, was in hot demand.


Your dad was happy for you guys all to have a career in music? Oh, he was thrilled. I think they were worried. I think especially they were worried about me because I didn’t know the Great American Songbook.


I couldn’t improvise jazz, but they were very thrilled that it all worked out. In the mid-70s, Steve joined ex-British Spooky Tooth member Gary Wright’s band and played keyboard on Gary’s hugely successful album, The Dreamweaver, which featured that chart-topping title track. I’ve just closed my eyes again for the Dreamweaver train, trying to take away my worries of today and leave tomorrow behind.


If we can reach the morning light, fly me high through the starry skies, maybe to an astral plane, cross the highways of fantasy, help me to forget today’s pain. Tell me a little bit about working with Gary Wright. Yeah, that was amazing.


As a kid, once I knew I wanted to do music, I just couldn’t wait. My brother left high school early to go on the road with Sonny Nade Share, and right away things were clicking. And pretty much the same for my brother Mike.


Right out of high school, he was on the road and working and doing sessions, and I had just finished half of my senior year. You know, the famous producer, keyboard player, songwriter David Foster had just done the Dreamweaver album with Gary. We were all friends.


He was using both my brothers on lots of sessions, and he knew who I was, and he was actually starting to use me a little bit. That was one of my first programming gigs, was I did all the stuff that David Foster, you know, when he first started producing. And he had just finished doing the sessions for Dreamweaver with Gary in the studio, and Gary asked him if he knew any young keyboard players who would be willing to go on the road.


And David thought of me, and I got the gig. I auditioned, and within 10 minutes, got the gig. And it was such a cool experience, you know.


I bet. Can you describe it? Gary had been around for a while. He was kind of a veteran at that point.


He had been in the band Spooky Tooth. He was real good friends with George Harrison, had worked on a bunch of his stuff. But this was him just doing his solo thing, I think, for the first time.


The thing about it is even though he was just kind of starting off, he was very well connected. So we were right away on these great gigs. We would be opening for Peter Frampton, and yes, doing stadium gigs, and these huge festivals, and gigs that most young bands would kill to be on and have that kind of exposure.


It was an amazing experience. Steve continued working and touring with Gary Wright all the way through to the 80s, and the two collaborated on Gary’s 1981 album, The Right Place. Steve had been with him since a teenager.


I don’t mind the same way too. You’re ready to hold someone. You were how old? 17.


I hadn’t finished high school. You hadn’t finished high school. Did it turn your head? Yeah.


As far as thinking it was God’s gift, no. I may have acted like that a little bit, but I had brothers and enough people who had very biting senses of humor, and if any of us were getting too big for our own britches, we would be, we had a lot to kind of cut us down to size. I’m chatting with Steve Piccaro from Toto.


In terms of your brothers, were you competitive with them, or did they foster your growth? They totally fostered it. They were very demanding. My brother Jeff could be very tough on me, but yet there was more of an encouragement thing coming from them, especially in a band situation.


It was one of those sibling things where when we lived at home, say Jeff and I would be at each other’s throats. The second he moved out and got his own apartment, he was the coolest older brother in the world. We got along great.


Then all of a sudden we were in a band together again. There was that familial tension. The first band that Steve had been in with Mike and Jeff was called the Piccaro Brothers.


The band was a precursor to their later involvement in Toto. Your dad must have been so proud of the three of you. I think he was.


Joe Piccaro had been getting used to the idea that his boys were destined to make music for some time. The three of them were deeply involved in bands all through high school, and they managed to find some pretty talented classmates to join them too. It was kind of two generations of a high school band.


David Paich and my brother Jeff had a band in high school. When they graduated, I had a band right away. I kind of took over the name that they had used, another horrible name, Still Life.


David Paich had also come from a musical family. His father, Marty, was a renowned arranger, composer and conductor. I met Steve Lukather soon after starting high school, and this guy Mike Landau, another really amazing guitar player.


That’s how David Paich and my brother Jeff saw Steve Lukather. And then Steve started getting hired for sessions himself. Steve Lukather had been something of a child prodigy.


He was already an accomplished musician by the time he was a teenager. In 75, Steve played on Sessions for Cher, as well as on Alice Cooper’s massive hit album, Welcome to My Nightmare. Welcome to my breakdown.


I hope I didn’t scare you. That’s just the way we are when we come down. We sweat and laugh and scream here.


Cause life is just a dream dear. You know inside you feel right at home here. Welcome to my breakdown.


You’re welcome to my nightmare. You notice we haven’t even started talking about Toto yet. That’s coming up next.


This is a breath of fresh air with Sandy Kaye. It’s a beautiful day. Steve Porcaro was on a roll.


As is often the case in the music scene, if you’re good, you get picked up. And his gig with Steve Wright led him directly to working with Boz Skaggs. Jeff and David, by this time, together with David Hungate, they kind of became a section, a rhythm section, that people hired a lot together.


Louie Shelton hired them for Seals and Crofts stuff, and that kind of led from one thing to the next, and all three of them wound up working on Boz Skaggs’ Silk Degrees album. We can’t say it again 3 a.m. it’s me again, wouldn’t know Things would have to end this way I did my best, the perfect guess knew when to go Perfect, you knew when to stay Come tell me that you love me dear I’ve been feeling down some too After all this time now, I’ll get it clear I’ve been waiting just for you Do you see Oh, that makes you know To show you that I care It was the perfect kind of gig for me, and I jumped right into that, and that kind of became Toto. Silk Degrees itself was one of the greatest albums of all time.


Right. You guys obviously thought the same. What was it like working with Boz? It was amazing.


I didn’t personally work on Silk Degrees. I did a little bit on the follow-up album, but I was his road guy right away for Silk Degrees, you know, doing the synthesizers, the string parts, the little mini Moog parts here and there. There was always another piano player, but it was an amazing time, and Boz was just this incredible boss.


We just had so much fun, and the music was great. What was it about that album that made it so different? Well, first of all, it just, again, was the stars aligning. You know, I think that was when he really came into himself as far as lyrically and musically, and he was smart enough to see the talent in a David Page and in Jeff, and David and Jeff were on fire then.


They would kind of let them do their thing, you know. Lowdown was a jam. Lowdown was them jamming in the studio, like they always did, while the engineers were getting levels and drum sounds.


The guys would just kind of start jamming, and Boz was smart enough to walk out in the studio and here’s this groove going on, and going, you know what? I can sing on top of this. ¶¶ ¶¶ Toto was signed because of David Page. David Page being the guy who co-wrote just about every song on Stilt Degrees.


That was pretty much that band. David Page, my brother Jeff, David Hungate on bass, and then when they toured, when Boz toured for Stilt Degrees, they added me on second keyboards, then Steve Lukather on guitar. So the record company knew that David Page was the songwriter, the guy who created a lot of that stuff.


Toto was about David having a band with my brother Jeff, having their own band and doing David’s songs, but they were always very open to us other guys contributing. When David was putting together Toto, he decided to go with Steve. He was a little younger, wasn’t he? No, him and I are the same age.


We’re a little younger than them, than Jeff and Dave, 3 years younger. But they saw Steve Lukather playing with Boz. He had gotten a gig with Boz.


It was pretty much Boz Skaggs’ band, and then we just plugged in our own lead singer, Bobby Kimball. And then David Hungate was a studio musician in L.A. that loved Jeff. They started doing a lot of sessions together.


So even though my brother Mike was the bass player in their band in high school and was doing well, he was touring at the time a lot with another band, with Seals and Crops. When they put Toto together, they really wanted that rhythm section of my brother Jeff and David Hungate. There was a bass player from the band Three Dog Night who was friends with David and Jeff, and they’d done some work together with him.


He was in a band called S.S. Fools. And a couple of the guys from Three Dog Night, as well as one of the singers, was Bobby Kimball. That’s where they first heard and saw Bobby and thought he’d be perfect for Toto.


And then they added us two young guys, Lukather on guitar and me on second keyboards, to kind of freshen things up a little bit. Yeah, you certainly managed to do that because Toto was an instant success. Yeah.


That’s kind of how Toto came about. Toto had huge success with their breakthrough hit Hold the Line in 1978. The song helped propel their debut self-titled album to reach multi-platinum status.


I heard a story, and I’d like you to tell me whether it’s true or not. One of the studio musicians from ABBA said that Toto was named because you guys thought that the ABBA name was so cool only having two letters, and that’s how you got the name Toto. Is that true? You know, that’s close.


I mean, the way I remember it, at the time there were bands like U2 came out the same year we did, In Excess. We loved these names that were very short. I don’t remember the name ABBA coming up, but it might have, it might have, and it was only a couple letters.


But we just wanted something short and concise and a couple letters, something like Toto. It was never, ever going to be Toto. That was the dog in the movie.


We all love the movie The Wizard of Oz, and that’s where it came from, which was the dog in The Wizard of Oz, but that was never going to be the name of the band. So what happened? You start putting it on the cassettes of the guys of the band jamming, Toto, and it’s going to, we’re going to definitely replace that name when we come up with the right one, and next thing you know, you’re looking at the album cover and there it says Toto. It just stuck.


Was there a time when you decided, okay, we’ll go with this, or was it the graphic artist? Obviously, you know, obviously at some point it just was… It was. We had gotten used to it, and, you know, I don’t think we were ever really comfortable with it. It was always the dog in The Wizard of Oz to us.


We wanted something cool, like in excess, or we didn’t want people thinking of Toto, and we didn’t even know about the bathroom fixture company in Japan, which is where we wound up spending so much time. I didn’t know that either. That would have been a reason not to call the band out right there.


But you obviously got used to the name. We just went with it. Yeah, got used to it.


And did you end up thinking it was cool in the end? No, not to this day. None of us. You took off straight away.


Were you shocked by that? We did. No, yeah, you know, it’s funny. No, I wasn’t shocked by it, to tell you the truth.


It was, like I said, we never did an audition. We never did a showcase for record companies. We were… David had written all those songs on Silk Degrees.


Boz’s album was such a success that at all the live shows, all the record company presidents and the brass of the record company, right? When something’s successful like that, they’re all around and hanging out and partying backstage and watching this show from the sidelines. And they saw this drummer and this bass player and this keyboard player and this synth player and this guitar player and the keyboard players, the guy who wrote all the songs on Silk Degrees. So our record deal was pretty much preordained.


You’d all paid your dues and you certainly had the pedigree. You know, exactly. And the record company, it was the same record company as Boz’s, Stars Aligned.


So the first album that you did after getting that record deal was the self-titled album, right? And that saw the Hold The Line go gold. First single out of the box, did real well. Written by David? Written by David.


RPM singles were still the thing then, and on Hold The Line, I had the B-side, taking it back. David was the 800-pound gorilla in the room, in the band as far as having the clout, being this very famous songwriter. He was just on fire in those days.


One day I went out into the studio, just kind of came up with this tune while we were, I don’t know what we were doing in the booth. And the very next day, David was very late coming to the session. And everyone was kind of set up, waiting around, and I was like, hey, I got a tune.


And I had just written it the day before. Then we cut, taking it back. We were living the dream.


I was just 20, 21. I think I know it all. You should have shown me it began.


You would have known it began. Cause I’m taking it back where it all began. The house on the cape, the place on the sand.


I’d take it all back if you’d just pick it up. Steve says the band was always accommodating when someone wanted to offer up new material. David was always, as much as he always had a lot of material, they were always very encouraging for any of us to contribute writing-wise.


And so Steve kept on writing. And by 1982, he helped deliver the hit songs Rosanna and Africa for the band’s highly anticipated fourth album. The first thing we started working on was Rosanna, and we all felt very good about it being something special.


You know, it starts off with my brother Jeff playing a very unique drum beat. You know what I mean? That was very typical of him to combine all his influences. It was just such a unique song, and it did very well.


And I got to finally show the guys and the world, you know what I mean, what I was working so hard to do. That song kind of defined us. It was a special song for all of us.


And it went to number two. Yeah, it did. It was huge.


Pinnacle of Your Career? One of them, yes. I believe that was written after an old girlfriend of yours. Yes, yes.


David was writing for the fourth album. Rosanna and I had started a relationship, and I was kind of living at David’s house. So Rosanna was there quite a lot.


I think David might have developed a little crush on her at the time. He just says he was just kind of using her name. But she had an effect on all of us, I think.


It was an amazing time. Believe me, she was inspiring. How did she feel about having the song written about her? At the time, she seemed OK with it.


I actually felt bad for her. I mean, as her career over the years, you know, every time she’d be on a David Letterman or on a talk show, it would be the first thing they’d bring. They’re always just looking for something to talk about besides whatever movie she was promoting.


So they would bring that up. And she said some snarky things about it over the years, you know, about hating that song. I think she just hates being asked about it.


She was already an actress at the time. Yeah, doing well. Really just kind of coming up in a big way.


The song Rosanna was written about Rosanna Arquette. Steve and Rosanna broke up not long after the song was released. All I want to do when I wake up in the morning Is see you alive Rosanna, Rosanna Who’d have thought that a girl like you Could ever care for me Rosanna All I want to do when I’m in love Is give you a little more time Rosanna I didn’t know you were looking for more Than I could ever be About 20 years since she went away Rosanna, yeah Now she’s gone and I have to stay So Rosanna at number two, and much to the amazement of the band, Africa climbed to the top spot on the charts.


The biggest surprise was Africa being our only number one song. Especially in those days. Now maybe people don’t think it matters, but you know when you do your running order, you have side A and side B of the record, and Africa was the last song on side B. It’s not where you put anything that you think is going to be a single.


I remember Lukather and I both thought it shouldn’t even be on the album. I just didn’t know about it really fitting in. It helps you keep your humility about you when it winds up being the only number one we’ve ever had.


I hear the drums echoing tonight She hears only whispers of some quiet conversation She’s coming in 1235 The moonlit wings reflect the stars that guide her toward salvation I stopped an old man along the way Hoping to find some old forgotten words A range of melodies He turned to me as if to say Hurry boy, it’s waiting there for you Gonna take the last of any weight from you There’s nothing that a hundred men or more could ever do Lay down and act cool Dogs cry out in the night As they grow restless longing for some solitary company I know that I must do what’s right Sure as Kilimanjaro rises like Olympus above the Seventy I seek to cure what’s deep inside Frightened of this thing that I’ve become The album Toto IV won a Grammy for Album of the Year in 1983, but despite it going for number one, voters didn’t nominate it, instead preferring Rosanna. These two songs remain Toto’s most famous tunes, but guitarist Steve Lukather always worried that people didn’t get that Toto as a band had much more depth than these songs represented.


This is a breath of fresh air with Sandy Kaye. It’s a beautiful day. Steve left Toto in 1987 after the Fahrenheit album to pursue a more full-time songwriting and composing career.


He did continue, however, to work with Toto in various supporting roles. My time in the band had kind of run its course. You know, the guys would be talking about, we need to scale down and have less of these arrangements.


And they were kind of talking about exactly what I did, so I was taking the hint. You know, by this time Nirvana and Grunge had become very popular. Just a very much more scaled down, less produced style of music was what was on the charts.


And overnight, our style had become kind of unpopular. In the street, I know what the people are saying. In the street, I know what the people are saying about you.


Yeah, you. The things you do, lie and cheat, and make the rules for games that they’re playing. Oh, yeah.


Waiting on the street, find out all along they’re playing me against you. Oh, fools. It was during this time that he composed the music for the song Human Nature, and produced the synthesizer for The Girl Is Mine from Michael Jackson’s best-selling album Thriller.


Steve said he owes it all to producer Quincy Jones. David was working hard every night, doing up-tempo grooves to send to Quincy. I was already in the studio working with him, programming synthesizers on Thriller.


But he had reached out to David Page. And Human Nature was just something I’d been working on, on my own, on the side. Quincy accidentally heard it.


It was on the other side of a tape we had sent of a couple songs of David’s. Quincy heard Human Nature, a very rough, rough version of Human Nature, with me singing the same verse over and over again. He really liked the vibe of it.


Asked me if I would mind if the great John Bettis could redo my verse lyrics, and John just knocked it out of the park. Lookin’ out across the bright top She holds her baby first in line Keeps her shots before she’s done dead I hope he knows she’s mine Lookin’ out across the bright top She holds her baby first in line Keeps her shots before she’s done dead I hope he knows she’s mine Why do you let it get in the nature? Why, why do you do it that way? We’re talking about Human Nature. All the guys in my band heard Human Nature in its demo form, and none of them said, oh my God, Steve, this is an amazing song you wrote.


And to me, it was just, it was one of, I had written three songs, and it was just one of them. And it wasn’t like I thought, oh my God, this is a great song I wrote at all. And like I said, when I played it for the guys in the band, they would have recorded it if I really wanted them to.


But at the time they said, you know, we’re really kind of going for more stadium rock, bigger rock songs and these sensitive mid-tempo ballads that were what I typically wrote. But Quincy hares it and finishes it. And I have an artist like Michael singing on it and the stars align.


And it’s something people might refer to now as what I wrote in my old days. But I wish I could be inspired like that again and write something that good again. I feel like it’s just all about who does it.


That’s why I’m always looking for an artist. It just was truly a fluke where I had made a cassette. I would have never handed it in to anybody.


It was an unfinished piece of music. And David asked me to record a couple of groups he had done that he wanted to submit to Quincy. And I happened to run out of cassette tapes.


And long story short, Quincy heard it by accident. He happened to hear Human Nature and said, I want to do that. Were you thrilled that that ended up on Thriller? What do you think? Of course.


It was amazing. Obviously that would make big bucks, but I guess that’s not the entire thrill, is it? No, and not that the bucks haven’t been great over the years. But to have a Quincy do it and to have an artist like Michael, who’s truly a singer.


He wasn’t just singing a song. I mean, I remember he was copying a lot of my phrasing, the way I was phrasing the verses and stuff. But all those things in between when the intro would come back in and he was just vocalizing, that was just all him just feeling it and just ad-libbing and bringing it to this other level.


Quincy stayed very true to my version. He added Steve Lukather on guitar and he added Michael Boddicker on the small synth part. But for the most part, he stayed very true to my version.


So it was a great experience to have a Michael Jackson singer song. Every day he would leave at a certain time to go do a vocal lesson with Seth Riggs, his teacher. He was constantly working on his instrument.


People get distracted by all the noise and all the garbage, but Michael really was just an amazing singer. This is every songwriter’s dream. I’m sure you can imagine how popular Steve Boccaro became after the Thriller album was released.


Anyone who was anyone in the music business wanted him to be involved in their productions. So under the auspices of producer David Foster, he started working with the likes of Earth, Wind & Fire, Donna Summer, Hall & Oates, Chicago and the Brothers Johnson. Remember them? I worked with George and his brother before with Quincy.


George actually came to a total rehearsal and I had a song called In The Way I had started. I wound up finishing it with my brother Jeff and David Paich and that wound up on the on the winner’s album. It was then that Steve began to turn his hand to also composing music for film and TV.


What’s the driving force? Why keep going? I mean, you could be happily retired and spending your time cruising wherever. You might think, but it’s the fact that I finally this stuff is getting real good. This stuff is really working.


We weren’t at 16 bit until I was in my 30s or something like that. I feel like I’m just getting going to tell you the truth. Whether it’s touring or doing sessions or having a TV show, you know, those things own me.


And my songwriting, what I think I’m really the best at, what’s really unique about me is always kind of on the back burner. And when I have time, for instance, when I’m doing a film or a TV show, those are so challenging to me. I am working on those things 24-7, struggling just to make the deadline.


So you’re talking about scoring TV shows and films and the like, aren’t you? Yes. I always felt when I was doing film work, I was kind of being a watered down version of the temp score of someone else. But I love doing the work.


I absolutely loved it. I love the process. I love the discipline of it, which we didn’t have in the band.


Producing ourselves, we never really had firm deadlines. We’d add another month onto our recording schedule. We’d add another week or two onto our mixing schedule.


So when James Howard, who I’d been helping with on some of his film scores, doing some synthesizer work, when he turned to me and said, hey, do you want to try this? And I was like, you mean writing the film, like doing a TV show or something? And he says, yeah, do you want to give it a go? I was like, you know, I don’t know if I could have music done by Thursday. I never was very disciplined. It was always loosey-goosey.


Starting songs was easy, but finishing them was a whole other story. But he did manage to work to deadlines and after some time returned to play with Toto from 2010, when the band decided to reform and tour in support of brother Mike Porcaro, who was suffering from ALS. Steve performed on the band’s 2015 studio album Toto 14, co-writing and singing lead on The Little Things.


This was only the third time he’d ever performed lead vocals on a Toto album. Please shake up the world When you can’t find the pearls You once held in your hand How can all these things keep changing so fast You can’t count on anything to last I just don’t understand How can all this In a trace of a smile In a photograph When I’m down and you talk And you make me laugh That reminds me it’s moving Two things in life In that manner I found myself in a very blessed and unique position, and I’m just able to do what I want to do, which is write my songs. That’s all I do now, and I’m hoping it’s all I do for the rest of my life.


So you’re feeling quite pleased with yourself these days? Let’s just say comfortable in my own skin, where I’m not beating myself up. I can go to a jazz show now and appreciate it, and not feel like I’ve got to get my shite together. You know what I mean? That I’ve got to beat myself up afterward.


In 2016, Steve finally came out with his own solo album. It had taken him six years, and now he has another one planned. Singing is very difficult for me, and I only want to sing things that there’s really no one else to sing.


Like how it was with Toto, I would have loved to have had someone else singing my songs. Bobby Kimball completely amazed me on the second album with Secret Love. I never would have thought in a million years that Bobby would sing that song.


The only way that got done was by me not being in the room when he did it. You never felt like you could turn into me Your secret love Left more than a broken heart To act for so long It’s done enough I feel like I’ve hit the lottery three or four times in my life. We’ve talked about two, where are the other two? Having my children and just my film career, I’ve always done well out of the box, out of the gate.


Final question, Steve Porcaro. You talk about high school bands, and they were so prevalent back in the day. I’m not sure that kids are so into high school bands today.


And if that’s the case, where are the next bunch of incredible musicians going to come from? It’s a really good point. It’s something I noticed right away. I had my first daughter very young.


I was 20 years old, and I was definitely the youngest dad at the PTA meetings and stuff. And right away, when she was in junior high school and there was a dance, I’d drop her off and then I’d park my car. I wanted to take a peek in and hear the band.


And every time, even back then, we’re talking the early 80s, there’d be a DJ. And I think it speaks to the state of music these days. It is just very different.


And when we were in school, they didn’t mind if we played a Steely Dan song or a Chicago song or a Beatles song. And as you said, it’s all DJs today. It’s a different world than we grew up in.


I feel for these kids that want to be players. Do you worry for the future of music? Yeah. Especially with a lot of the hip-hop stuff, I have trouble seeing people getting nostalgic about it.


We’ll want to hear a lyric at our wedding or whatever that touched us when we were in high school or whatever. I have trouble picturing people getting nostalgic about, you skanky whore. Steve Porcaro, you’ve been so generous with your time.


I’ll let you off the hook now. Very welcome. What a pleasure chatting with you.


Really nice to meet you. Bye now. Just as a footnote, when Toto regrouped in 2020, Steve Porcaro chose not to rejoin the band.


And yes, he’s still working on that upcoming second solo album. Thanks for your time today. I hope you’ve enjoyed all that Steve Porcaro has shared with us.


I’ll look forward to being back in your company again same time next week. Have fun, won’t you, in the meantime. Bye now.