Thursday, October 25, 2018

Countdown to Ecstasy at the Beacon Theater

Great time at the Steely Dan concert tonight. Although it was more like a Donald Fagen solo show since Walter Becker died a year ago

Whenever considering going to a Steely Dan show I always worry: "what if they don't play 'My Old School'?"

Tonight that was not a problem - the show was devoted to playing the entire Countdown To Ecstasy album and the Dan did a great job and although the band was loud I could hear people around me singing along during My Old School ('ooooh no, William and Mary won't do now.')

And then after doing that entire album they did "Black Cow" and "Peg" and "Josie" and "Hey Nineteen" and "Rikki Don't Lose That Number" and "Aja" and "Kid Charlemagne."

Actually, in spite of the consistently excellent musicianship (of course, this is Steely Dan) Fagen didn't really warm up until the Countdown set was over and he addressed the audience: "so weird day today, with the ipe-ay ombs-bay" - I'm not sure why he switched to Pig Latin to say "pipe bomb" but the audience cracked up. Until that point he had stayed at his keyboard and barely sang, especially at first - the backup vocalists did almost the entire vocal of "Bodhisatva" although luckily it doesn't have a lot of lyrics (Bodhisatva, won't you take me by the hand, can you show me the shine in your Japan, the sparkle of your China, Boddhisatva, gonna sell my house it town and I'll be there  to shine in your Japan, to sparkle in your China.

(What the kids today don't realize is that the phrase "sparkle of your china" was used in a dishwashing detergent advertisement of the time.)

Anyways, after Fagen addressed the audience in Pig Latin he got much more lively and sang louder and even stood up to play the melodica and danced around a little. He was great. And My Old School was great. And the Beacon is a 15 minute walk from my apartment. What's not to like?