Steve March-Torme´ was born in New York City to the multi-talented Mel Torme´ and the former model, Candy Tockstein. They were divorced when Steve was two and a half years old. Shortly thereafter, Candy married the actor/comedian Hal March, who was the host of NBC-TV’s The $64,000 Question Show and subsequently starred in Neil Simon’s Come Blow Your Horn on Broadway.
An avid baseball player and fan growing up in Westchester County, N.Y., Steve dreamed of playing for the Yankees. While listening to games on the radio in the basement of their home, he discovered his love for music almost by accident. Following every game, he’d switch to the Top 40 music stations and find himself singing along with such artists as The Four Seasons, Nat King Cole, The Temptations, Ricky Nelson and Gene Pitney. With his natural ear for harmonies, his favorites quickly became and remain The Beatles. By the age of 12, he knew that he wanted to be a performer and at 13, he earned his first paycheck, fronting his own band. After his family moved to Beverly Hills, he formed friendships with other second generation “show biz kids” like Desi Arnaz Jr., Dean Martin Jr., Miguel Ferrer, Carrie Fisher and Liza Minnelli while attending high school. During this time, he continued to develop as a musician and his influences grew to include Joni Mitchell, James Taylor, Todd Rundgren and Steely Dan.
Following the early death of his stepfather, Steve rekindled his relationship with his father Mel, and soon realized they had a great deal in common besides a love for performing and various types of music. They also shared an avid interest in vintage planes, trains and automobiles.
In the late 1970’s, Steve recorded his first LP, Lucky, for United Artists Records, supporting it with a very well received 20 city, national concert tour. Upon returning to California, he produced and sang on Liza Minnelli’s Columbia Records releaseTropical Nights, which became a favorite of the New York dance clubs.
Honing his craft as a performer, Steve worked as an actor, playing the male lead in a mini-series for RAI (Italian) Television, and appeared on a number of variety television shows back home. He spent three years as the featured vocalist on ABC-TV’s $100,000 Name That Tune and also hosted two Los Angeles based television shows, Video 22 (a precursor to MTV) and Box Office America.
On the recommendation of Quincy Jones, Steve was tapped to be one of three featured singers for the vocal group Full Swing, which had its debut release on Planet Records. After successful tours of the United States, Brazil and Japan, Steve left the group to focus on his solo career. The first project that came to fruition was his CDSwingin’ at the Blue Moon Bar & Grille, recorded in large part with a crackerjack, L.A. based big band. One of the highlights is a live duet between Steve and his dad Mel on Straighten Up and Fly Right, which showcases a very cool, improvised “scat” lesson between student and pupil. That disc was followed up by The Night I Fell For You, featuring an alluring arrangement of the Lerner & Loewe classic On the Street Where You Live and a number of Steve’s original tunes, many penned with longtime collaborator/pianist and musical conductor Steve Rawlins. In reviews of both CDs, critics singled out a number of these new songs as “contemporary yet timeless, combining a wry sense of humor and a natural feel for romance, with classic melodies.” Those two releases were followed up by The Essence of Love, which contains some of the most romantic, well crafted standards ever written, includingBlue Skies, Stardust, Every Time We Say Goodbye and a playful duet with jazz icon Diane Schuur on The One I Love Belongs To Somebody Else. His current jazz CD, So Far (available through amazon.com and Steve’s website), combines the most popular material from his first three CDs into one “best of” recording.
Steve has wooed audiences in every venue from intimate jazz clubs to Performing Arts Centers to festivals worldwide (Australia, England, Japan, Canada, Brazil to name a few). A natural interest exists in hearing Steve sing the songs his dad was known for and because of this, in 2007 he did a 28 city, U.S. cross-country tour for Columbia Artists Mgt. Inc. (CAMI) entitled Tormé Sings Tormé. Steve is proud to have had the opportunity to pay tribute to his father. The show features a ten-piece band (dektette), extraordinary arrangements penned by Marty Paich exclusively for the Velvet Fog, and a multimedia presentation of never before seen photos and video clips of Steve and Mel singing together. A Hi-Def, 5.1 Surround Sound version of Tormé Sings Tormé was released on AIX Records. It won Best Music Dual Disc at the 2006 EMX DVD Awards Show in Los Angeles. Steve also performs a pared down version of this show in which he’s backed by a quartet.
From Broadway To The Beatles, From Mercer to Mel is one of his two symphony shows, an eclectic, exciting evening that includes music from Rodgers & Hammerstein, Stevie Wonder, Jerome Kern, Johnny Mercer, the Gershwins and The Beatles to name a few. The other is his “Holiday” symphony concert, which includes classics like “Winter Wonderland”, “I’ll Be Home For Christmas”, “Sleigh Ride” and of course his father’s timeless “The Christmas Song (Chestnuts roasting . . .)”
The show Steve performs the most is entitled “Snap, Sizzle, Pop”, which includes freshly arranged standards from the “Great American Songbook”, original songs, “pop” selections from his childhood and personal stories from his never boring life. This show is also performed with a quartet
Steve’s latest CD is entitled “inside/out”. It’s a set of twelve brand new, original tunes written entirely by Steve and is the first CD he’s recorded on which he not only sings but plays keyboards and guitar as well. “Inside/out” was written and recorded more in the “pop” vein that Steve was weaned on as a teenager and young adult and it’s now available on CDBaby.com, amazon.com and Steve’s website.
In 2013, he played The Smith Center in Las Vegas and to quote Jetsetters Magazine Editor Janice Marie Wilson: “I had forgotten how wonderful falling in love was until last Friday night, when I attended the Steve March-Torme performance at the Cabaret Jazz Theatre in Las Vegas, Nevada. It’s worth coming to Las Vegas just to see him and his musical jazz band. Because you will surely “fall in love.” The stage lights grew brighter and with an unassuming gesture to the band … BAM BAM BAM the evening took off the ground never to land until after the last standing ovation.”
In addition to his performing and recording career, he’s not only hosting his own radio show every Wed. and Thurs. afternoon (11:00 a.m.-1:00 p.m. Pacific Time, replayed from 9:00 p.m.-11:00 p.m.) on the Music of Your Life network (www.musicofyourlife.com), but he’s also the voice every week day afternoon on 91.1 FM “The Avenue” in Wisconsin and KVYL-FM in Lake Havasu City, Arizona.
With a full, rich voice that’s been described as “seductive*” and “effortless*” and a natural ability to connect with audiences, Steve March-Torme is forging his own lasting path in the world of music.
Los Angeles Times