Tag: Steve Lukather

Steve Lukather Discusses His New Autobiography, ‘The Gospel According to Luke’

In his new autobiography, The Gospel According to Luke, guitarist Steve Lukather tells the story of how he and his high school friends became the most in-demand session players in L.A., and then went on to form Toto, a band that continues to defy the odds and has sold more than 40 million albums.

Co-written with Paul Rees, Lukather’s biography is an engaging, hilarious and at times tender look into the life of one of music’s most accomplished guitarists and session players. His list of musical achievements alone are enough to fill an entire book. The five-time Grammy winner (and eight-time nominee) has worked with everyone from Boz Scaggs and Paul McCartney to Aretha Franklin and Miles Davis. He was once asked to join Elton John’s touring band and played guitar on Michael Jackson’s Thriller – the biggest selling album of all time. Then there’s his personal, brotherly relationship with the Porcaro brothers and Toto, and all of the highs and lows in between.

The Gospel According to Luke is more than a time capsule of life, love and redemption. It’s a treasure trove of information for anyone wondering what it was like being in the studio and working alongside some of the greatest artists, producers and engineers in music history.

Guitar World recently spoke with Lukather about his new book, session work, gear and more.

What made you decide to write a book about your life and career? Was it something you always thought about doing?

I originally wasn’t looking to do a book at all. A few years ago I got invited to the Grammy Museum to do a Q&A with Scott Goldman. It was one of those interviews where he asked me questions about my whole career, and I didn’t know what was coming. I remember the room was packed and as I was talking, people were howling in the aisles, laughing at all of my stories. When I came offstage, my agents came up to me and said, “You have got to write a book.” From there, I started getting calls from publishers and it morphed out of that. We spent a few years doing it, editing and rewriting. It was hard because there’s a lot of life I remember clearly, and a lot where they told me I had a good time! [laughs]

What was the writing process like?

It was very cathartic and brought back a lot of memories, both good and bad. The session years, in particular, brought back a lot great memories. Those were wonderful times for me.

How did you become involved in session work?

My father saw being a pro musician as something more attainable than a rock star. I played by ear from the ages of seven to 14 and then took proper lessons. From that point, I met the Porcaro brothers. Both they and their father were session players. I started reading liner notes and following all of the great studio guitar players I looked up to, like, Lee Ritenour, Larry Carlton, Jay Graydon and Ray Parker Jr. I also happened to be geographically placed where I could actually meet these guys. Jeff [Porcaro] knew them all because Jeff was in Steely Dan when we were in high school.

Read the rest of my
Interview with Steve Lukather by Clicking Here!

Advertisements

Album Review: Steve Lukather – Transition

TransitionOn his new album, “Transition” Steve Lukather paints a rich tapestry of sonic art and blends his brush (in this case, guitar) into a refreshing blend of blues, jazz, pop, rock and standard from his colorful musical palette.

Lukather is a five-time Grammy Winner and a personal guitar hero of mine. He’s worked with Eddie Van Halen, Slash, Zakk Wylde, Jeff Beck and Eric Clapton. He’s also co-led Toto through every twist and turn of the band’s platinum lined history and has played on albums by Michael Jackson, Warren Zevon, Aretha Franklin, Roger Waters, Cheap Trick and other rock and pop royalty.

In addition to preparing dates to support the new CD, Lukather is also set to embark on an Australian tour with Ringo Starr and his All-Star band as well as scheduling dates for a Toto 35th Anniversary Tour.

Lukather sees ‘Transition’ as a turning point for himself. “As we were writing the songs” he says, “I was thinking about everything I’ve seen: all the people I’ve lost in my life, the great and the difficult experiences I’ve had, and how ultimately it was time to get it together and embrace things for what they are, because we’ve only got one life to live and we’ve got to make the most of it. I’ve got a lot to be thankful for, and now is a perfect time for me to take stock of that, which is part of what ‘Transition’ is about.”

Written with long time friend and keyboardist CJ Vanston, “Transition” is an album that delves deep into the psyche of the human persona, with contributions from artists that run the full spectrum of music. Among them: Gregg Bissonette, Fee Waybill (The Tubes), Nathan East (Fourplay), Richard Page (Mister Mister), and Phil Collen (Def Leppard). Expect nothing less than Luke’s tasty guitar wizardy combined with strong vocals and thought-provoking lyrics.

Highlights for me:

“Judgement Day”, a song that emphasizes the tabloid world we live in:

We can read the lies you write for all the world to see. The reflection in the mirror shows it’s you, but you blame me.
— Judgement Day

“Right The Wrong”;  a haunting song (and my personal favorite) that also brings with it a message of hope. Because when you think about it, we really are the future and the past. We’ve got to make it last.

I’m tired of waiting for the world to end. We can’t let it disappear.
— Right The Wrong

“Do I Stand Alone” has a catchy country flair to it and a song that is radio ready.

Don’t Try To Take Away My Freedom
Don’t Try To Take Away My Voice
— Do I Stand Alone

The final track, “Smile” is Luke’s take on a Charlie Chaplin standard from 1936 and a song dedicated to his Mother. A fitting end and apropos title if you ask me, as it was something I found myself doing quite a bit of when the album was over.