Apr 262013


Ok, so every time I hear Steely Dan on the radio, I immediately think of Bond’s Mr. Wint & Mr. Kidd. Maybe part of the reason is that I don’t really know the “Band” — Fagen and Decker — other than small snatches I’ve seen of them — but their legend looms large in my mind.

On the surface, this is a band that I should not like a wit. Jazz Fusion! Studio musicians!! Odd vocal stylings. What gives?? Yet — although I don’t OWN any SD — I like them when I hear them. And the solo for “Reelin’ in the Years” by said studio axeman is one of my all-time faves.

By looming large, I mean I picture a studio teeming with ’70s excesses — women in jumpsuits, coke, shag carpeting, etc.

So I probably won’t be downloading and Steely Dan for the old iPod. But if I’m ever at some cool party, chock-full of modern, Eames-inspired furniture, and this is coming out of the Blaupunkt’s, I’ll nod my head and say, Yes…I can live with this.

I know most bands have a persona that is larger than life. But did Steely Dan ever try to cultivate it the way that, say Zeppelin did?

Should I break down and buy this band? Help …

Jul 172012

Last week a guy I only know through Internet means but really enjoy “seeing” posted something about how much cooler Stevie Nicks and Fleetwood Mac are than Bruce Springsteen. I’m not a fan of either band, but thoroughly dig 6 to 8 songs by each band. Stevie Nicks solo, however, is atrocious. What’s that “Tears Like a White Winged Dove” song, or whatever she’s going on about? She should have been gagged once that thing hit the airwaves.

I can understand Boss Backlash as well as anyone, but although I once did a few weeks’ time trying to convince myself of the “genius” of Lindsey Buckingham, the long-running mystification of Fleetwood Mac baffles me. They were a pretty cool, pretty weird mainstream band with a half dozen killer songs. However, I’m too old and was too-cool-for-school as an outwardly dorky teenager to pretend these days that “Landslide” and deep cutz from Buckingham’s Go Insane album should get me looking off into the distance or reflecting on missed opportunities to snort mounds of cocaine.

Fleetwood Mac, Steely DanABBA, and Bob Seger and the Silver Bullet Band have been discussed here before, I’m sure. Who approved their Critical Upgrades? Each band has its charms. I’m not immune to the best songs by those bands in small doses, but for the last 20 years their stature as Important Mainstream Rock Artists Who Were Hipper Than We Originally Thought has exploded. I can’t buy into this. There were hipper bands then, and there have been hipper bands since. The fact that they were relatively hip doesn’t make them hip. I’ve scoured enough used bins to find relative gems from an era’s music I generally (and probably rightfully) ignored.

What I want to know is which of these bands will lose their Cinderella powers first? Whose limo will turn back into a pumpkin? I think the clock is ticking on at least 2 of the following 4 artists, while 1 artist’s belated hip status is ascending. What do you think? What other bands fall into this category, and what perhaps rightfully looked down-up (by music snobs) ’80s artists are now becoming unfathomably hip?

Which '70s mainstream band that became hip long after the fact is due to revert to its previously uncool status first?

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