Steve Lukather says Toto’s gig at The Met in Philadelphia this Sunday (20th October) will be their last for the "foreseeable future" and "certainly the end of this configuration of Toto."
Asked by Morning Call about his upcoming plans, the guitarist said "I don’t know what the future-future’s gonna be, but I do know that’s gonna be the last show ... for the foreseeable future – and certainly the end of this configuration of Toto.”
Hinting that the gruelling demands of touring life are part of the reason behind the decision, Lukather explained: “This kind of lifestyle is way harder than people think it is.
"They just think that we float around from city to city magically and live a life of luxury. And I’m not saying that we travel poorly, but it’s a burden to be away from your family 230 days a year, like me.”
Commenting on keyboardist David Paich, who was forced to sit out of the band’s North American tour in 2018 after falling ill on the European trek, Lukather said: “It was really the scariest thing ever.
“He had some sort of a seizure or something like that. We went home and he had to retire from touring because of his health. Apparently, he pushed himself a little too hard and he fell, you know, so to speak.”
Lukather continued: "Dave’s still playing. He can sing. He’s up and about and he’s happy and he’s walking around. But he’s not built for speed anymore, you know what I mean? He came out in L.A. recently ... came out at the end (Paich joined Toto on 20th September 2019 at the Wiltern Theatre in Los Angeles to perform ‘Africa’). And that was a nice way to close the book — at least this chapter.”
Toto were also slapped with a lawsuit from Susan Porcaro-Goings, the widow of the group's late drummer Jeff Porcaro, seeking royalties in 2018.
Lukather told Morning Call, the legal issues are “another bummer of our situation and why we’re calling it a day.”
He added: "We’ve had some horrendous litigation. Horrendous, horrendous, awful, mean, you-gotta-be-kidding-me kind of lawsuits, and we lost the suit. So, it beat us down.”
Refusing to rule out a return, Lukather said: “I can’t predict the future. “’m not saying I’m never gonna play this music again. That would be stupid to say; that would be a lie.
"I can tell you that this version (of Toto) is dead October 20.”
Toto’s representative Stever Karas has clarified the band are going hiatus rather than splitting up.
He told The Inquirer: “Future plans will be announced in 2020 as they unfold and become formal following what is a true break following the 40 Trips Around The Sun tour which has been on-going for more than two years now.”