‘Rosanna’ by Toto: Classic or Dud, Praise or Blame for this, my guiltiest of pleasures

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Really though..moving from galloping early eighties love song, to power chord ballad, a nice funk shuffle, and a blistering horn section...what more could they have done?

This really was Jeff Porcaro's (God rest his soul) finest moment. Those ghost notes on the snare make me want to strut.

Resounding, unabashed, timeless classic

J. Grizzle (trainsmoke), Thursday, 16 November 2006 17:46 (fourteen years ago) link

Good jobb by Jeff Porcaro, but the key work here is by David Paich. The synth solo is one of the best ever.

The song itself isn't quite that much of a classic though. "Africa" and "Georgy Porgy" were better.

Geir Hongro (GeirHong), Thursday, 16 November 2006 17:48 (fourteen years ago) link

I just learned the drum pattern the other day!

Dominique (dleone), Thursday, 16 November 2006 17:49 (fourteen years ago) link

it truly is a great synth solo. when i heard it as a kid, i wondered if it was the same musician from Mannheim Steamroller..which it reminds me of to this day

But Geir, don't you think the dynamics of the song give it something over the others?

J. Grizzle (trainsmoke), Thursday, 16 November 2006 17:51 (fourteen years ago) link

I just learned the drum pattern the other day!

a la Porcaro, or more of a Purdie shuffle?

J. Grizzle (trainsmoke), Thursday, 16 November 2006 17:53 (fourteen years ago) link

the Yacht Rock expose is classic ... the song is not.

zaxxon25 (zaxxon25), Thursday, 16 November 2006 17:53 (fourteen years ago) link

I learned it from a porcaro video online -- and he talked about how it was combo of a purdie shuffle, and john bonham's beat from "Fool in the Rain" (I think)

Dominique (dleone), Thursday, 16 November 2006 17:56 (fourteen years ago) link

^^noice

J. Grizzle (trainsmoke), Thursday, 16 November 2006 17:57 (fourteen years ago) link

Great song. I like Africa too. That's it for Toto though.

Mark (MarkR), Thursday, 16 November 2006 18:06 (fourteen years ago) link

Rosanna's nice, but it's no Hold The Line.

kornrulez6969 (TCBeing), Thursday, 16 November 2006 18:08 (fourteen years ago) link

Oh shit, Hold the Line is good too.

Mark (MarkR), Thursday, 16 November 2006 18:11 (fourteen years ago) link

But Geir, don't you think the dynamics of the song give it something over the others?

The dynamics are kind of great, but still nothing when compared to the dynamics of a lot of Toto's prog influences.

I guess, that is the main flaw about Toto and lots of other similar AOR acts. The musicians could have done more complex stuff, but preferred to do it the easier way and keep within the 4 minute limit to grant them airplay etc.

Geir Hongro (GeirHong), Thursday, 16 November 2006 18:14 (fourteen years ago) link

The musicians could have done more complex stuff, but preferred to do it the easier way and keep within the 4 minute limit to grant them airplay etc.

I think that is the virtue of Rosanna: the balance of prog roots from seasoned studio guys and pop sensibility. I personally enjoy listening to a band who is holding their talent close, knowing that they could unleash at any moment.

sidenote: the Dune soundtrack was a keeper too

J. Grizzle (trainsmoke), Thursday, 16 November 2006 18:20 (fourteen years ago) link

Prog doesn't need "balance". Long live maximalism!

Geir Hongro (GeirHong), Thursday, 16 November 2006 18:21 (fourteen years ago) link

Prog doesn't need "balance".

True..but what they were attempting did. And they acheived it.

J. Grizzle (trainsmoke), Thursday, 16 November 2006 18:24 (fourteen years ago) link

"Hold the Line" by far

The Good Dr. Bill (The Good Dr. Bill), Thursday, 16 November 2006 18:28 (fourteen years ago) link

I like "Georgy Porgy" or whatever it's called. "Hold The Line" is kind of corny, but I do love the guitar solo. "Rosanna" and "Africa" are both classic.

billstevejim (billstevejim), Thursday, 16 November 2006 18:35 (fourteen years ago) link

im sure mama told you 'bout diet pills

dave q (listerine), Thursday, 16 November 2006 18:38 (fourteen years ago) link

TS: In Your Eyes vs. Rosanna

It wasn't until I saw the video that I realized that there were two lead singers on this song. Wasn't paying that much attention, I guess.

Toto's always been one of those faceless bands to me, like Ozark Mountain Daredevils or Player.

Pleasant Plains /// (Pleasant Plains ///), Thursday, 16 November 2006 18:42 (fourteen years ago) link

"Hold The Line" sounds too much like Journey. They were better when they used mainly their jazz/fusion background, and didn't try to "rock".

Geir Hongro (GeirHong), Thursday, 16 November 2006 18:48 (fourteen years ago) link

If we're going for "musically interesting," "inventive," "impressive," all that, Thom Bell's arrangement on the Spinners' "Games People Play" is much cooler. I'm surprised no one's mentioned the Spinners here; they always seemed like such an obvious source for "Rosanna."

From the Moon to Pluto Back Down to Earth (Rrrickey), Thursday, 16 November 2006 20:54 (fourteen years ago) link

And Jeff Porcaro's finest moment was "Your Gold Teeth II."

From the Moon to Pluto Back Down to Earth (Rrrickey), Thursday, 16 November 2006 20:57 (fourteen years ago) link

And Jeff Porcaro's finest moment was "Your Gold Teeth II."

fair enough...I guess by 'finest moment' i wanted to indicate that it was a signature track for his style.

J. Grizzle (trainsmoke), Thursday, 16 November 2006 21:13 (fourteen years ago) link

I hear ya, but didn't he have more than one style? I mean, YGTII is like *jazz* or something. But some of the stuff you describe about his work on "Rosanna" (which I've never been a fan of) sounds sort of like what I dig on the Steely Dan cut -- the shuffle beat, especially. I will listen to the drums on the Toto thing. I just think that he brings so much smarts to "Katy Lied."

From the Moon to Pluto Back Down to Earth (Rrrickey), Thursday, 16 November 2006 21:18 (fourteen years ago) link

And KL is one of my fave albums ever.

From the Moon to Pluto Back Down to Earth (Rrrickey), Thursday, 16 November 2006 21:19 (fourteen years ago) link

ha ha...*jazz*.

You are right: I mean, he was a studio guy. He could play whatever was needed, and play it damn well. I guess the "Rosanna Shuffle" is sort of his hallmark beat, the synthesis of the Purdie shuffle and Bonzo's beat on 'fool in the rain.'

As for Steely Dan, they sure plucked from the greats, didn't they? Gadd, Porcaro, Purdie, Hodder and Chevy Chase.

J. Grizzle (trainsmoke), Thursday, 16 November 2006 22:01 (fourteen years ago) link

this song is great, but i have to agree that it doesn't reach 'hold the line's heights.

maura (maura), Thursday, 16 November 2006 22:17 (fourteen years ago) link

Jeff Porcaro did a great job on "Africa" too, although he was at his best with Steely Dan, yes he was.

Geir Hongro (GeirHong), Thursday, 16 November 2006 22:39 (fourteen years ago) link

Geir, i think your earlier assessment of "Hold The Line" is accurate. I always felt like they were co-opting a sound that was done better by someone else.

For me, that is where Rosanna gets its stamina: its singularity.

J. Grizzle (trainsmoke), Thursday, 16 November 2006 22:51 (fourteen years ago) link

If I never hear "Hold the Line" again, it'll be too soon. It's not it's too Journey-like. It's that it's like a soapwater version of a Jefferson Starship song.

Pleasant Plains /// (Pleasant Plains ///), Thursday, 16 November 2006 22:57 (fourteen years ago) link

I've linked to this a couple of times, which leads me to believe that anyone who claims to have learned to plau this beat as smooth as Porcaro pulls it off is either a) as good as Jeff Porcaro or b) talking smack.

Josh in Chicago (Josh in Chicago), Thursday, 16 November 2006 23:06 (fourteen years ago) link

To follow up on my own post, per the video, people overlook the subtle addition of the Bo Diddley beat to "Rosanna." It's a triple-cop! Genius. The drumming, at least.

Josh in Chicago (Josh in Chicago), Thursday, 16 November 2006 23:09 (fourteen years ago) link

my friends just recorded an album at jeff pocaro's old house in LA...it's a studio called seedy underbelly now, which used to be in mpls but relocated.

anyway, i guess there is a "coke room" where everything is mirrored fo' better snortin' action.

M@tt He1geson: Sassy and I Don't Care Who Knows It (Matt Helgeson), Thursday, 16 November 2006 23:10 (fourteen years ago) link

CLASSIC. i love this song.

derrick (derrick), Friday, 17 November 2006 01:03 (fourteen years ago) link

ten months pass...

Resounding, unabashed, timeless classic

^^^this

Dom Passantino, Wednesday, 10 October 2007 15:50 (thirteen years ago) link

"Der Kommisaar's in town ah ow"

Mark G, Wednesday, 10 October 2007 15:50 (thirteen years ago) link

eight years pass...

Will listen later, thanks. In case it hasn't been said on this thread yet, Steve Lukather studied with a very well-respected, much-loved, sorely missed guitar player and teacher named Jimmy Wyble.

Twin/Earthtone Records (James Redd and the Blecchs), Thursday, 17 March 2016 21:49 (five years ago) link

Oh that's awesome, I love this kind of thing. Hearing the isolated drum and vocal tracks were even more fun than the guitar, but it's pretty crazy all the different playing styles that the guitar goes through

Vinnie, Friday, 18 March 2016 00:16 (five years ago) link

I can't fault Toto as musicians, but dud.

// 166,000 W A N K E R S // LOVE (Turrican), Friday, 18 March 2016 00:23 (five years ago) link

The beginning of the guitar solo, when Porcaro moves from the hi-hat to the ride, is one of my favourite things

Master of Treacle, Friday, 18 March 2016 00:57 (five years ago) link

yeah thx of that link. i sorta had forgotten this song even existed but those isolated tracks are all fantastic

dynamicinterface, Friday, 18 March 2016 01:05 (five years ago) link

i hate to that guy but somehow this video dilutes the musicianship that is highlighted in niels' link.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qmOLtTGvsbM

dynamicinterface, Friday, 18 March 2016 03:52 (five years ago) link

ha yeah it'd be nice to hear the backing tracks without the dudes yapping over it but still very cool.

lute bro (brimstead), Friday, 18 March 2016 03:54 (five years ago) link

lol, bobby Kimball's mustache.

dude has no voice anymore. at recent Toto shows the rest of the band has played live while he has lip synched to his pre-recorded tracks from the 80s.

Neanderthal, Friday, 18 March 2016 04:35 (five years ago) link

well recent until they canned his ass again, Joseph Williams is in the band now

Neanderthal, Friday, 18 March 2016 04:35 (five years ago) link

jeff porcaro's shuffle on this song is wild

HYPERLINK TO RAP GENIUS (BradNelson), Friday, 18 March 2016 04:46 (five years ago) link

The particular kind of stylized prop-ness of women in 80's videos is sometimes jarring for me now.

human life won't become a cat (man alive), Friday, 18 March 2016 14:39 (five years ago) link

i'm becoming rather a fan of the film score these nerds did for Dune

scarcity festival (Jon not Jon), Friday, 18 March 2016 14:39 (five years ago) link

Anyway, going to have to go with dud -- a lot of great musical elements that somehow don't add up to anything. In an indirect way, this band supports the case for the genius of Fagen/Becker.

human life won't become a cat (man alive), Friday, 18 March 2016 14:43 (five years ago) link

In other Toto-related links, Jeff Porcaro sure did a lot of studio sessions:

http://jeffporcaro.blogspot.dk/2001/01/jeff-porcaro-sessions.html

niels, Tuesday, 22 March 2016 09:33 (five years ago) link

btw man alive otm re toto as supporting the case for the genius of Fagen/Becker

niels, Tuesday, 22 March 2016 11:57 (five years ago) link

three years pass...

Not quite a year

calstars, Thursday, 23 January 2020 03:38 (one year ago) link

Meetchu all da way

calstars, Thursday, 23 January 2020 03:40 (one year ago) link

i love this fuckin song

Rhoda from Steubenville (Neanderthal), Thursday, 23 January 2020 03:44 (one year ago) link

Rosanna, yeah

calstars, Thursday, 23 January 2020 03:52 (one year ago) link

one year passes...

this is a perfect song

a talented ‘Rebel’ with Balls (Spottie), Thursday, 9 September 2021 21:56 (one week ago) link

yes

STOCK FIST-PUMPER BRAD (BradNelson), Thursday, 9 September 2021 22:23 (one week ago) link

All I wanna do is never ever wanna do is never compromiiize

calstars, Thursday, 9 September 2021 22:33 (one week ago) link

*synth solo*

clouds, Friday, 10 September 2021 01:36 (one week ago) link

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NMI81yIlT0Q

calstars, Friday, 10 September 2021 02:30 (one week ago) link

YEAH-HEY-YEAAAHHH

terminators of endearment (VegemiteGrrl), Friday, 10 September 2021 02:35 (one week ago) link

that porcaro video is completely insane. so is yoyoka's version

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6P-tTLmuKo0

call all destroyer, Friday, 10 September 2021 03:13 (one week ago) link

i do view this song as a sort of apotheosis of 80s corporate rock and agree that it's pretty much perfect

call all destroyer, Friday, 10 September 2021 03:20 (one week ago) link

it rules imo

terminators of endearment (VegemiteGrrl), Friday, 10 September 2021 03:35 (one week ago) link


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