Wednesday, June 26, 2013

"Hey Nineteen" by Steely Dan

Top 10 Alert!
Song#:  0427
Date:  11/29/1980
Debut:  65
Peak:  10
Weeks:  19
Genre:  Pop, Soft Rock, Jazz-Rock

Pop Bits:  Three years after their most successful album, 1977's "Aja," the non-touring studio group (consisting basically of just Walter Becker and Donald Fagan and a myriad of studio musicians) returned with "Gaucho," a seven-track album that became their last release before their initial break-up in 1981. In addition to being plagued with mishaps and lawsuits following "Aja," the delay of the album was also caused by the duo's notorious perfectionism in the studio. They would end up using over 40 different musicians for the album and would relentlessly do take-after-take on each part. Even the mixing of the album took an excessive amount of time. But their obsessiveness paid off as the album was another platium seller, peaking at #9, and this single became their third Top 10 hit.

ReduxReview:  Steely Dan's music never much excited me. Their blend of smooth jazz, rock, and cerebral lyrics just did not click with me. And for the most part, still don't. There were exceptions and this tasty groove is one of them. It almost borders on too low-key, but the wonderfully executed recording and nice harmonies make it hard to dislike.

ReduxRating:  7/10

Trivia:   The "Gaucho" album would give engineer Roger Nichols his third Grammy award for Best Engineered Recording-Non-Classical. His previous two Grammy's were for Steely Dan recordings - the album "Aja" and the song "FM (No Static At All)."



  1. There are sooo many Steely Dan haters out there, but I've always really liked them! Agree this is one of their best.

  2. Never been a Steely Dan fan, but a few weeks ago I found myself singing this in the shower - and I hadn't heard it in ages. Could that be the mark of a great song? Don't like the band, haven't heard the song in ages and yet it popped in my head?

    1. Could be. It's one of their songs that I actually enjoy. I can't remember the song, but had a similar thing happen the other day. Woke up with a song in my head that I had never really liked. Sadly, I can't remember what it was now!