Toto, “The Turning Point” from Tambu (1995): Toto Tuesdays

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“The Turning Point,” written by the entire band with Stan Lynch, was the second single from 1995’s Tambu. The song incorporates Toto’s considerable arranging and writing skills, as well as Steve Lukather’s stronger-than-ever vocal presence, to again exceed anything their contemporaries were doing at the time.

Elliott Scheiner, who produced the album with Toto, wanted a clean, organic sound. To that end, David Paich add fresh Hammond B3 and Fender Rhodes accents which support Lukather’s soulful vocals. Simon Phillips and Mike Porcaro also add keyboard touches to “The Turning Point,” but there is plenty of space for Lukather’s guitar leads and a compact, yet tasty solo.

Lukather again shares lead vocals with Jenny Douglas-McRae and the pairing works, giving the song a level of soul resembling “Georgy Porgy.” Additional backing vocals from Phillip Ingram and the late Ricky Nelson, as well as percussion from Paulinho da Costa (instead of the usual Lenny Castro), pushes the song over the top.

With an eye toward radio play, Toto’s single edit chopped out almost a minute and a half this song. Unfortunately, “The Turning Point” saw little chart action.

Toto Tuesdays is a song-by-song feature that explores the band’s rich musical history. They returned with three new songs on 2018’s ’40 Trips Around the Sun.’

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