Jeff Porcaro: Toto – Africa (Full Drum Transcription)

“Africa” is one of Toto’s most recognizable songs, a timeless classic. Originally released on their 1982 album Toto IV, the drum performance on this track is a perfect example of Jeff Porcaro’s signature sound, showcasing his versatility and musicality as a drummer.
In this article, we’ll take a closer look at this iconic drum part and provide a complete drum transcription to study and analyze. We’ll also discuss some of the main elements of Porcaro’s style, providing tips and insights on how to get as close as possible to his drumming style.

jeff porcaro toto africa drum transcription

Playing Jeff Porcaro’s drum part on “Africa” by Toto requires an intermediate level of technical proficiency (notably for playing the right-hand hi-hat part) and musicality. Here are five tips to help you get started:

  • Listen to the song: Listen to “Africa” and focus on how Jeff Porcaro’s drum part fits into the overall musical arrangement.
  • Study the transcription: The next step in learning any drum part is to study the transcription. Study the rhythms, grooves, and fills carefully, understanding how the different elements of the drum part fit together.
  • Focus on the feel: Jeff Porcaro was known for his impeccable touch, and his drum part on “Africa” is no exception. Listen closely to the one-handed 16th note hi-hat part. There’s a subtle accent on the first 16th note, different from the typical funk/R&B style, which accents the first and third 16th notes. That gives the groove its unique feel.
  • Work on your timing: Jeff Porcaro’s timing was rock-solid, and his drum part on “Africa” showcases his precision and accuracy. Let’s play the main drum beat, keeping your timing tight and consistent.
  • Practice the fills: Jeff Porcaro’s fills on “Africa” are an integral part of the drum part, and they showcase his musicality and creativity as a drummer. Isolate every fill and make it yours!

By following these tips, you should be well on your way to playing “Africa.” Remember, playing drums is a lifelong journey, and there is always room for growth and improvement. Here you can download the complete drum transcription. Keep on drumming!


toto africa drum sheet music

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