- Steely Dan Co-Founder and Guitarist, Walter Becker, Dies at 67
- Steely Dan's co-founder and guitarist Walter Becker died at the age of 67 on Sunday (September 3). No cause of death or other details have been announced, so far.
His bandmate Donald Fagen said, "Walter Becker was my friend, my writing partner and my bandmate since we met as students at Bard College in 1967. He was smart as a whip, an excellent guitarist and a great songwriter. He was cynical about human nature, including his own, and hysterically funny."
Back in July, he canceled Steely Dan's Classic East and West concerts due to unspecified ailment.
Walter Becker, aka Walter Carl Becker formed Steely Dan along with Donald Fagen in 1971. The band blended elements of jazz, R&B, traditional pop, and sophisticated studio production with ironic and cryptic lyrics.
But he told Rolling Stone in 1974, "I'm not interested in a rock/jazz fusion. That kind of marriage has so far only come up with ponderous results. We play rock & roll, but we swing when we play. We want that ongoing flow, that lightness, that forward rush of jazz. I learned music from a book on piano theory. I was only interested in knowing about chords. From that, and from the Harvard Dictionary of Music, I learned everything I wanted to know."
The band has released nine studio albums, 21 singles, one live album, one live set on DVD, seven compilations in the United States, one box set.
The band was broke up in 1981, but they reunited in 1993. The band won Album of the Year at Grammy Awards with their 8th studio album "Two Against Nature" in 2001. In the same year, they were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
In 1985, Walter Becker became a member of the English sophisti-pop group China Crisis, producing and playing synthesizer on their album "Flaunt the Imperfection".
He released two solo albums "11 Tracks of Whack" in 1994 and "Circus Money" in 2008, respectively.
- source : Rolling Stone