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January 09, 2015

Everything you never thought you'd need to know about jazz-rock legends Steely Dan.


In addition to its normal crop of young indie bands and hipster mainstays, this year’s Coachella music festival will also feature ’70s jazz-rock–easy-listening–fusion legends Steely Dan. A lot of people going to Coachella are probably way too young to know much about “The Dan,” so we’ve provided this handy guide for millennial festival-goers to get to know them better.

  • When old white people who like jazz complain that Kenny G. isn’t really jazz, the real jazz that they’re talking about is Steely Dan.
  • Steely Dan is sort of like if the Law and Order theme song was a whole band.
  • Don’t be worried if you go see Steely Dan and can’t hear the music. Similar to a dog whistle, Steely Dan performs at a frequency that only Rolling Stone writers and baby boomers can hear.
  • If ‘70s weed had a soundtrack, Steely Dan would be on it.
  • Younger Coachella attendees will probably know Steely Dan best for their Wikipedia page, “Steely Dan”
  • “Steely” comes from an ancient Sanskrit word meaning “of, or relating to, being pussies.”
  • If you’re looking for the quintessential Steely Dan song to start with, try “I’ll Supply the Love,” which may actually be by Toto. I’m not positive.
  • It’s a little-known fact that Steely Dan is well known.
  • At some point everyone in the crowd will be expected to put their arms around each other and sway, this is like the old person equivalent of a Google Hang.
  • If you feed Steely Dan a lot of baking soda and then have them drink vinegar they will explode like a volcano.
  • Original vocalist David Palmer was forced to exit after the band caught him in his hotel room painstakingly untangling rock and jazz.
  • You can call your parents during Steely Dan’s set so they think you decided to skip Coachella and work your weekend shift at Walgreens after all.
  • Unaccompanied minors at Steely Dan shows have a way of ending up “Bigged” like Tom Hanks by the power of hot licks. Watch out!
  • The official Steely Dan font is Arial Narrow.
  • They’ve had way more sex than you will ever have.