"I was a drummer for eight years. When I was 12 I saw my pop's band Toto reunite with their original singer Bobby Kimball." - Trev Lukather

Posted: April 9, 2024
The Effect album process was me sitting with an open new session figuring out a tempo that I felt I wanted to create with. Then, I'd see if any music ideas wanted to be born that day. When I felt that I had something strong musically, I'd map out a foundation track and send it to Nic to jam to.

Photo credit: Michelle Weber and The Sisters Closet 

I've always been a huge fan, Trev! Your passionate soulful sound, creative genius and performance is ROCK STAR! I just have to say, your new band ROCKS hard! You and your bandmates are making absolute magic; hardcore brilliant Rock & Roll! I absolutely love the powerhouse sound of all three massive tracks that you've released in recent months: " Unwanted," "Something Wrong," and "Toxic Envy." Can't wait for the album!

You and your band The Effect have immense star quality and a rock royalty line-up! Trev Lukather (son of Toto’s Steve Lukather) on guitars, Nic Collins (son of Phil Collins) on drums, Steve Maggiora (Toto) on keyboards and killer lead vocalist Emmett Stang.

Sophia: Please describe the moment that you knew that you had to play guitar.
Trev: Well first off, wow! Thank you so much for the amazing introduction. That means a lot and I think YOU are a badass yourself, so let's start there! Ha-ha!

Trev: Now to your question. I was a drummer for eight years; from 4 years old to 12 years old. When I was 12 I saw my pop's band Toto reunite with their original singer Bobby Kimball. First song with a packed house, my Pop stepped out and ripped his first solo and I was mind blown! I watched a crowd reach out to him and I knew that's what I wanted to do. I always heard riffs, music and melodies in my head when I would play drums. I knew I had songwriting abilities even before I picked up a guitar. It came to me very easily too. I'm self taught but my Pop showed me Drop D tuning to get me going. I have stuck with that ever since.

Sophia: You're a Singer, Songwriter, Guitarist, Producer! Who are your biggest musical influences as a songwriter and arranger and why?

Trev: My mom would always play bands that she loved while we were driving in the car. All throughout my childhood, I grew up listening to music. Pop was always an influence but I have to say mom was the one that played me Journey, Foreigner, Bee Gees, Mr. Mister, Duran Duran (Ordinary World) Yes, Pink Floyd, Genesis, Peter Gabriel, and the list goes on! Listening to those bands changed my life! I was hooked by the production. As a Producer, I really got into Mutt Lange, Trevor Horn and Bruce Fairbairn. Huge sounding drums and vocal arrangements from another planet!

Sophia: You're an extraordinary songwriter, musician and producer Trev! Can you describe the music making process for you (especially the songwriting) in your new band?

Trev: Thank you so much! The Effect album process was me sitting with an open new session figuring out a tempo that I felt I wanted to create with. Then, I'd see if any music ideas wanted to be born that day. When I felt that I had something strong musically, I'd map out a foundation track and send it to Nic to jam to. I wanted Nic to have creative freedom with his drum parts because he's so unique as a player. His instincts are fresh! When Nic felt he had something, he'd FaceTime me and we'd go through the arrangement and then I'd throw some ideas out to finalize the drums. We were always on the same page. It was a breeze! A lot of fun! When we had the drums, I'd track my guitars and send it to Steve for key parts. Steve would always take the song from its original direction and take it down another road in the best possible way. His lead keyboards would sometimes become the hook melody. When Steve was wrapped, I would send it to Josh Paul who is an incredible bassist that we hired as a session player. He's one of the most badass guys around! He couldn't do the band thing but he brought his touch to every tune. We did the Van Halen thing by waiting until the full music track was done before the top line. Emmett would come over when the music was wrapped and we would write the top line together. We tracked vocals then and there on the spot! I feel when the excitement is there, that's the only and best time to start tracking vocals. We fed off the excitement of every song as we recorded this album. We treated every tune like it was our next single.

Sophia: What's the "best ever" piece of advice you've received about song-writing?

Trev: To focus on songwriting first and foremost! My Pop told me not to even try to solo on guitar in the beginning. Just focus on rhythm, feel and songwriting. That's what brought him the most success. Songs and his rhythm; believe it or not! His guitar parts on all the records he was hired for were just as important as the hook! They added hooks! Michael Jackson hired Pop for his musical feel and parts, not his guitar solos. So, he instilled that in me very early on.

Sophia: Your official music videos shine and show how amazing and hard-rocking your new tunes are! "Unwanted" your group's first single came out in October 2023, the same month you rocked your first show in North Hollywood. Your band debut was in Los Angeles on October 15, 2023. Describe the feeling of rocking the stage with your "rock star line-up" new band and smokin' hot music that night.

Trev: The videos are because of my very talented and beautiful wife, Madison. She has directed every video so far. She's also styled us with her sister Liza. They have a company called The Sisters Closet. They've really helped us find our image as a band. They added their lifelong family friend Michelle Weber to the mix who is an insanely talented photographer and videographer. They have really found their own thing. It's great to be their experiment!

The show was epic! It felt like home. We had real chemistry on day one. It felt like we'd been a band for years. The vibe was so good. We had a blast playing our songs live and people really connected.

Sophia: Your guitar solo for "Something Wrong" is epic! Can you share any insight as to what inspired it?

Trev: You're killin' me with these compliments. It truly means the world! The solo poured out of me. I really don't know how to explain it. Everything I do, I can't take credit for. I call them my invisible friends. I'm channeling something that I am grateful for. Ideas and melodies come out of nowhere and I sit back and wonder how the hell I thought of that! I knew the solo had to be an experience. It had to build with Nic's double kick. It had to pay off. I just followed where I was guided and felt the solo really owned its place in the song.

Sophia: It sounds like Summer 2024 is going to be a hella mega Rock & Roll party for you Trev! The Effect will be opening for Diamond selling Rock & Roll Hall of Famers! Can you please tell your fans more about your upcoming American and European Summer 2024 tour dates opening for the epic and legendary bands Toto and Journey?

Trev: We are beyond excited to play Isle of Wight Festival in the U.K. and stoked to open for Pop/Toto in Germany! We have headlining shows in between and we kick it off playing a really cool festival called CoopLive in the South of France. We are opening for Billy Idol in the U.S. in May. Five amphitheater shows. Steve Stevens (Billy Idol's guitarist and songwriting collaborator) has been such a gem and a huge support of the band. Emmett and Steve work together on tunes. Steve and Pop go way back. The whole BI team has been so welcoming and supportive. Very humbling!

Sophia: It's a major “guitar thrill” for me to be interviewing you, Trev Lukather. Thank you so very much! I love your "love and light" energy and your beautiful rock 'n' roll spirit! In one year since you and your bandmates have been rockin' hard you've recorded an album. The songwriting and music making must be an incredibly awesome process for all of you! The band's chemistry, dynamics and mutual respect must be colossal! Graced with masterful guitar skills, fiery locks, a million dollar smile, and enthusiasm so very contagious Trev is bound to captivate your heart! He's always been surrounded by musical icons. It's safe to say the rockstar life calls Trev's name.

His passion and genius for making music is undeniable. Trev's blessed with the best! Follow Trev Lukather's thrilling journey in the world of rock.

Trev deserves all the very best that Rock & Roll life has to offer. He’s a bright star that shines on! Long live Rock!

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