1 January

Pick a Day

Timeline : Steely Dan

September 3, 2017

Steely Dan co-founder and guitarist Walter Becker dies of esophageal cancer at 67.

March 28, 2013

Session rock guitarist Hugh McCracken (Billy Joel, Steely Dan) dies at age 70 of leukemia.

March 19, 2001

Aerosmith, Michael Jackson, Paul Simon, Queen, Ritchie Valens, Solomon Burke, Steely Dan and The Flamingos are inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame.

August 13, 1993

Steely Dan, who broke up in 1981, re-form and begin a US tour at The Palace in Auburn Hills, Michigan. Walter Becker explains: "We spent all the money from the last tour. We made $800 each and it's all gone now."

June 5, 1990

Jim Hodder (original drummer for Steely Dan), age 42, drowns in the swimming pool of his home in Point Arena, California.

June 21, 1981

Walter Becker and Donald Fagen announce the split of Steely Dan and begin work on solo projects. They would re-form in 1993.

November 21, 1980

Steely Dan releases Gaucho. The album is meticulously produced and features contributions from Rick Derringer and Mark Knopfler.

December 9, 1978

Steely Dan's Greatest Hits album enters the charts.

September 23, 1977

Steely Dan releases Aja. ABC Records set a deadline of March 31 for delivery of the record, which only led to more studio perfectionism (and delays) from Walter Becker and Donald Fagen.

August 3, 1974

Guitarist Jeff "Skunk" Baxter leaves Steely Dan to join The Doobie Brothers.

July 4, 1974

Steely Dan (Walter Becker and Donald Fagan) give up live performing after a show in Santa Monica so they can focus on studio work, including the album Katy Lied. They don't tour again until 1993.

December 2, 1972

Steely Dan make the Billboard 200 for the first time when their debut album, Can't Buy a Thrill, lands at #197. The title comes from the Bob Dylan song "It Takes A Lot To Laugh, It Takes A Train To Cry," where he sings:

Well, I ride on a mailtrain, baby
Can't buy a thrill

November 18, 1972

Steely Dan's first single "Do It Again" enters the pop charts. It will peak at #6 on February 11, 1973.

February 12, 1952

Michael McDonald is born outside of St. Louis. As a solo artist, his hits include "I Keep Forgettin' (Every Time You're Near)" and "Sweet Freedom," but his voice is also heard on songs he records with The Doobie Brothers and Steely Dan, as well as hundreds of other appearances as a backup singer.

February 20, 1950

Walter Becker, co-founder of Steely Dan, is born in Queens, New York City. He meets bandmate and songwriting partner Donald Fagen while attending Bard College.

December 13, 1948

"Skunk" Baxter (guitarist for The Doobie Brothers, Steely Dan) is born Jeffrey Allen Baxter in Washington, D.C.

January 10, 1948

Donald Fagen of Steely Dan is born in Passaic, New Jersey.

Back to Timelines

©2018 Songfacts®, LLC