3 Responses to “Lex Neon on Donald Fagen (Steely Dan, solo)”

  1. It amazes me how few of the players in Steely Dan were actually members of the band. Don’t get me wrong, I love Steely Dan’s work for the first eight years of their career. But this group was dependent on outside talent to give flavor to their best songs.


    • I don’t think that Steely Dan was really a band – I think it was a musical concept that was steeped in Fagen and Becker’s love – jazz and rhythm and blues.

      I think that Steely Dan (Fagen and Becker) were dependent on musicians that could really read and play. As you can see from the talent they chose to participate in their recordings, most of the players were jazz guys that were schooled on music and their chosen instrument. What’s left is a pretty incredible musical legacy. Cheers.

  2. You make an important distinction between “live” and “studio” acts. I think this is key in understanding the unique fusion of musical elements which define Steely Dan. Thank you for crafting such a thoughtful response, I will certainly address it in my next post.


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