ARTICLE: “Unconventional wisdoms” (Steely Dan)
I had the chance to just run with a sort of essay on Steely Dan by way of preparing the populace for their show at Tanglewood on Tuesday evening. Had the chance to quote some of my favorite Dan lyrics; I’m curious to hear what anyone may think of this. Just click on “Comments and Reactions” below.
“Fagen’s lyrics are frequently so dry, so cynical, so dense with in-jokes and references that hint at worlds of meaning while remaining curtly mysterious, that even hipsters can find this radio-ready mainstream behemoth to be irresistible.
In detail-rich lines dense with cultural signifiers—Dean and Deluca and Gramercy Park, a car phone in a Chrysler (in 1980), Cuervo Gold and “fine Columbian”—Fagen depicts a world of cocktail lounges and late-night ice cream parlors, romantic conquests that lead to malaise and romantic failures that inspire pride, white men possessing disposable income and a good dose of nihilism.