Esoteric and Steely Dan are practically synonymous. For more than 40 years, the duo of Donald Fagen and Walter Becker have been pleasantly confounding music purists with their labyrinthine jazz-pop — and even more pleasantly confounding journalists in interviews.
Steely Dan is in the midst of a tour with an eyebrow-furrowing title and on some dates, the band is playing one of its classic albums in its entirety before providing some “selected” hits.
Becker and Fagen recently spent an hour on the phone with journalists and responded to questions with unusual jocularity, but frequently veered into unrelated tangents that were, if not anything else, amusing.
Here are some excerpts from that interview.