TOTO - Official Website - Band History

The four remaining members returned to the studio at the end of 1991 and recorded Kingdom of Desire, the band’s ninth studio effort. As the summer of ’92 rolled around, the band was planning its Kingdom of Desire Tour.
On August 5, 1992, only a short time before Kingdom of Desire’s release and the start of the tour, tragedy struck. Jeff Porcaro, while spraying a pesticide in his garden at home, suffered a severe allergic reaction to the chemicals and died from a heart attack. The band, Jeff’s family, friends, fans, and the worldwide music community mourned the passing of a man, who was not only one of the greatest drummers of his generation, but was, as Lukather has consistently said, "a true soul brother" and an incredibly giving and selfless individual. To this very day, the band continues to honor Jeff’s legacy and dedicates their performances to his memory.

When Jeff passed away, TOTO found themselves confronted with whether or not the band should go on. With the Kingdom of Desire Tour just around the corner and their resolve shaken, TOTO decided to go ahead with the tour because they felt that Jeff would have wanted them to. In selecting a drummer to replace Jeff, the band decided that they wanted someone who would put their own signature to the TOTO sound rather than try to copy Jeff. Steve Lukather suggested Simon Phillips, whom he had remembered from the Beck / Santana Tour. Phillips bravely accepted the task of filling in for Jeff on the Kingdom of Desire Tour.

Despite the fact that the tour would go on, TOTO were still unsure what the future of the band would be. The Kingdom of Desire Tour became a very special tour for the band and the fans, as many people felt that it might be TOTO’s last tour together. TOTO performed more than three hours each night, playing songs from each and every album and adding a tribute of "With A Little Help From My Friends" dedicated to Jeff. The magic of the band’s performances during that tour captured the hearts of the fans, and at the end of the tour, the band decided to stay together and move forward, asking Simon Phillips to join them permanently.

In December of 1992 after the tour, TOTO returned to Los Angeles for a => Tribute to Jeff show. Joined by legendary musicians Donald Fagan, => Michael McDonald, => James Newton Howard, Don Henley, => Eddie Van Halen, David Crosby, Denny Dias, and George Harrison, the band performed all night, adding to the extensive Kingdom of Desire Tour set list from their own discography as well as hits from the other guest artists, many on which Jeff himself had played during his session work. Steve Porcaro and percussionist Lenny Castro joined the band on stage as well, and to this day, the Tribute to Jeff remains a milestone on TOTO’s long list of special performances.
At the beginning of 1993, TOTO started work on their first live record entitled Absolutely Live, which featured highlights from the Kingdom of Desire Tour. After its release, the band members went on hiatus to pursue other projects.