Toto, “Live For Today” from Turn Back (1981): Toto Tuesdays

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Steve Lukather has proven his skill as a vocalist on the prior two Toto albums, Toto and Hydra. Even before the Toto debut Steve Lukather was a legend on guitar and the legacy has only grown over the years with accolades from musician and fans alike. “Live For Today” marks the guitarist’s debut as a songwriter. Lukather has contributed to other Toto songs as a collaborator but “Live For Today” he stands front and center as a writer and vocalist.

The song is a solid stadium type rocker which is uncharacteristic for Toto at this point. As with many of the tracks on Turn Back the rhythm section of Jeff Porcaro on drums and David Hungate play a straight forward rock back beat. Steve Porcaro is pretty much seen but unheard on this track. Lukather, the best Toto ballad singer the band has ever had, is still discovering how to use his vocal talents to full effect at this point is the band’s history. ”Live For Today” lyrically explores areas that Toto has touched on before, but Lukather’s lyrics are more direct and raw.

“Baby, I’m a liar when I tell you that I just don’t care
Babe, I’ve got to have you but you’re never ever, ever there
Hey, the game is over, give it up right now
You’re teasin’ me, baby, how do you expect me to be without you

[Chorus]
You let your hair down low
You didn’t want to know about lovin’ me, babe
Let’s live for today, tomorrow may never come
Let’s live for today, tomorrow may never come
But you just can’t tell anymore…”

“Live For Today”, which was a Japanese only single from Turn Back, may have made a good addition to Steve Lukather’s debut solo album Lukather with its almost raw production by Geoff Workman. As a Toto song, it’s an interesting footnote for the band and a hint of the greatest of future Toto contributions by Steve Lukather.


Toto Tuesdays is a song-by-song feature that explores the rich musical history of Toto. The group returned in 2015 with ‘Toto XIV,’ their first album since 2006.

Preston Frazier

Preston Frazier

Preston Frazier is a bass-playing lawyer living in Atlanta. His first Steely Dan exposure was with an eight-track cassette of 'Pretzel Logic.' He can be reached at slangofages@icloud.com; follow him on Twitter: @slangofages. Contact Something Else! at reviews@somethingelsereviews.com.
Preston Frazier
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