Reviving this thread from the dead, to say that I saw Nathan East at the Toto show in Kettering, Ohio, last night (a few hours ago). What a treat! His playing was just right for the situation, as was the playing of drummer Simon Phillips. The two of them are well-matched.
East had a moment to really shine near the end of the show. The band played "Africa" and took an extended ride-out at the end, which turned into a breakdown. East took center stage with some tasty licks, and hinted at some of the "Ohio Funk" classics ("Skin Tight", for example). Then he did a call-and-response - scatting with a bass lick, and inviting the audience to respond. Very cool - good singer! And always a smile on his face!
To top it off, he was hanging out in the audience during the opening act. Several people recognised him, and he was very very gracious with each and every one of them. A handshake, a photo, an autograph, a few minutes of chatting; he refused no one. (Of course, the number of folks who didn't recognise him far outnumbered those who did!) Very classy guy and super nice all the way.
Nathan East is the universal super-sideman that many of us aspire to be.