Are You Relivin’ the Years?: How Steely Dan Became a Cult Favorite for Millennials

Even as younger generations seem to be at war with baby boomer ideals, there is one relic of the ’70s they can get behind: the soft-rock sounds of Donald Fagen and Walter Becker. How did a band known for its love of jazz and songs populated with down-on-their-luck characters become popular all over again?

(via The Ringer) by Derek Robertson

To look at American society over the past decade—from its memes, to its cultural criticism, to even its electoral politics—one might surmise the nation is consumed by a bitter and Manichean generational struggle, where no quarter is given and none taken over the power baby boomers wield as they cling to institutional power.

Maybe so. But there are notable exceptions, and perhaps the most notable comes from the medium through which the boomers shaped America’s cultural identity for decades: classic rock. Steely Dan, the jazz-rock combo whose musical and lyrical checkpoints include those most boomer-ish of pursuits such as cool jazz, hot guitar licks, tiki drinks, and expensive cocaine, have become an object of millennial obsession, spawning viral tweetsmash-ups, and even a custom run of streetwear emblazoned with their album art. John Mulaney and Nick Kroll wrote a bit based on Steely Dan for their hit Broadway show Oh, Hello. David Crosby, a fellow Boomer icon who’s become a Twitter favorite in his own right, earned blog press with a new Dan-inspired (and cowritten) tune. The list goes on…

Read more: How Steely Dan Became a Cult Favorite for Millennials – The Ringer

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