News Worms
News Worms


Steely Dan co-founder Walter Becker has died, aged 67

Steely Dan co-founder Walter Becker has died, aged 67

Walter Becker, guitarist and bassist for rock band Steely Dan, has passed away.

Walter Carl Becker founded Steely Dan with singer and songwriter Donald Fagen in 1972, and with the help of many talented session musicians, the band released a string of popular and critically-acclaimed albums that combined rock, jazz and studio wizardry in unprecedented fashion. His passing was first announced via his official website, and early Sunday his longtime musical partner Donald Fagen issued a statement in which he pledged to keep Steely Dan's music alive.

The cause of Becker's death was not released. He was cynical about human nature, including his own, and hysterically amusing. What other commercial band would build out an eight-minute track complete with Asian themes and sentiments ("Aja") and have jazz powerhouse Wayne Shorter serve as lead soloist (on saxophone!) on it over a lead guitarist? "That's sort of what we wanted to do, conquer from the margins", Becker told Time Out New York in 2011. It was no surprise it won a Grammy Award for Best Engineered Non-Classical Recording. And by relying on old music, sometimes performing shows devoted to individual albums, Steely Dan proved how proved how deep and enduring their catalog is. Becker and Fagen formed a band in college that included Chevy Chase on drums.

"What underlies Steely Dan's music - and may, with this album, be showing its limitations - is its extreme intellectual self-consciousness, both in music and lyrics, " wrote critic Michael Duffy in Rolling Stone in 1977 of the album. Becker developed a fluid style, one based on the blues but as fleet as hard bop.

Steely Dan is absolutely one of those bands that once you start listing songs you realize you know a lot more of their music than you thought you did.

The answer is pretty simple: Steely Dan always favored "feel".

In 2001, the band was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. And its music grew both more subtle and more magisterial, with intricate horn arrangements and pristine sound.

The personality clashes made things worse and was followed by a lawsuit, which was triggered by the drug overdose death of Becker's girlfriend Karen Stanley and a serious injury Becker sustained when he was struck by a NY cab. Becker stopped doing drugs after that and began working as a record producer, occasionally working with Fagen on some of his solo work, but the two of them didn't properly reunite until they started touring again in 1993.

follow

editors' picks

September 06, 2017
UFC to Refund Fans Who Couldn't Access Mayweather-McGregor After Ordering
UFC fighter Danny Roberts does not believe there will now be a flood of mixed martial artists heading for the ring. Forbes previously ranked McGregor as the 24th richest athlete in the world with a net worth of $34 million.

September 06, 2017
Donald Trump to nominate Jim Bridenstine as new NASA chief next week
The position has been open since Trump's inauguration with acting administrator Robert Lightfoot Jr. serving in the role. Bridenstine is an outstanding choice to provide precisely that", said Alan Stern, chairman of the board.

September 06, 2017
Apple will likely unveil new iPhones on September 12
The iPhone 8 is said to boast a vertical dual-camera system, instead of a horizontal placement that was seen on the iPhone7 Plus . Flicking or swiping gestures could replace the home button function, enabling the handset face to appear nearly all-screen.

September 05, 2017
WhatsApp starts testing tools for businesses
WhatsApp has confirmed that it is testing a new business app as well aimed at enterprise solutions. Facebook is finally looking into cashing in on WhatsApp's massive $22 billion acquisition deal.

September 05, 2017
USA flies bombers, fighters in show of force against N. Korea
North Korea labeled the flyover "a rash act", according to KCNA, the country's state news agency. The aid was part of a nuclear deal that North Korea later violated.

September 05, 2017
Kenya: A new presidential election held on the 17th October
While congratulating the good people of Kenya on the historical judgement, he called on them to be law abiding and shun violence. He was speaking a day after the Supreme Court annulled his election win last month and ordered a new poll within 60 days.

September 05, 2017
American Thomas vaults into share of Dell lead
Two things Thomas learned were patience and learning to score when he wasn't hitting it his best. The victory was Thomas' fifth of the 2016-'17 season and second in his last three starts.

September 04, 2017
Wilton Speight throws pick-six to Duke Dawson
Mazzi Wilkins's interception set up a late touchdown that ended any hope Stony Brook (0-1) had of rallying for an upset. Mayfield completed 16 straight passes to start the game. "Now he got close a year ago , but close doesn't cut it".

September 04, 2017
Suresh Prabhu says number of train accidents gone down during his tenure
After the third major reshuffle of the Narendra Modi Cabinet , Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu quits on Sunday. Mr Pradhan was given the additional charge of Skill Development Ministry.

September 04, 2017
US Open 2017: Diego Schwartzman upsets Marin Cilic to reach fourth round
The bottom half of the draw is now without a Grand Slam finalist and where American John Isner is now the highest seed at No 10. He also plays wearing a baseball cap with its band tightened to an extreme degree, drawing plenty of attention on social media.