Rock Music Studies
Special Issue: Steely Dan at 50 (2022) v9n1
Abstract: Steely Dan has always been a grumpy old guy’s band. In this essay, I listen to the ways in which Becker and Fagen turn their critical misandry on middle-aged American boomer generation males, adrift in vats of self-pity, marinating in melancholy and regret, and fermenting inexorably into elderly obsolescence. The duo masked their baleful assessment of white masculinist anxieties in music which blended jazz and rock sensibilities painstakingly polished to a smooth glossy aural sheen – all of which articulated an adultification of rock music culture in the 1970s.