BAUERLE: Saddened by death of Walter Becker

Becker was "a constant" in the Steely Dan band

September 03, 2017 - 4:32 pm

It is usually not good news when your phone starts buzzing and going crazy non-stop, but any fan of  B and B knows that I have been a huge fan of the music of Steely Dan and Donald Fagen for many years.

Of course, I am saddened by the death of Steely co-founder Walter Becker, who was, I believe, the best paid musician in the country between investments and royalties. He was also an amazing producer, and in music the producer is as important, if not more so, than the talent and material.


1. With all respect to Walter's memory, Donald Fagen IS the Steely Dan most of you know. He is the voice of the mega-hits you know, except "Dirty Work." And "The Danettes" sing that one.
2. Becker served as emcee, and usually sang just one song, "Daddy Don't Live..." Guitar legend Jon Herington has played the Steely signature guitar riffs since Christina and I have been stalk...err..following the band. Walter was an amazing musician and became an entertaining, almost DJ-like, on-stage voice of the band. He usually talked over an extended "Hey Nineteen" to intro the band and walked it all the way up to "the Cuervo Gold, the fine Columbian" part.
3. Becker and Fagen were the two constants in an ever-changing "Steely Dan Band" lineup, and Walter was kind of "background" on-stage except for what I've previously said. Please do NOT misconstrue what I am writing as disrespecting Walter. He was truly amazing, but who can fail to be eclipsed by Fagen? We saw Fagen a week ago this weekend and his voice is strong and when he launched into the Dan hits there was not a concert-wrecking difference between The Nightflyers and Steely Dan. At all.
4. I doubt Fagen will cancel the tour, but anything can happen. Just don't think your Steely Dan experience will be disappointing on October 17th. If Fagen wants a world-class 2nd guitar player, there is Connor Kennedy (The Nightflyers) or my brother Dick. Dick has worked with some pretty big names over the years (he had a song in "Spaceballs"), and would fit in immediately with Herington and Steely Dan. LOL. And I'm pretty sure he might know a few others looking for a job on the road.

When Fagen walks on-stage, give the band a huge ovation and Fagen will pump everything he has into the concert. He LOVES an into it crowd. Literally we have seen him feed off genuine applause and crowds that aren't comped mummies.

We'll have a member of Steely Dan on the show ASAP for a look-back at Becker and a look ahead to the Buffalo show.

And thank you very much to everyone who said hello this weekend (so far). Honestly, I still need a few more days to be back to my full self after unexpectedly euthanizing Hailey Cat, but my friends have insisted that I go out to be with them. Speaking of friends, Bellavia just called me to make sure I was OK after hearing the news about Walter. Friends make life better. Love you, bro!

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