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Steely Dan Reviews

Jazz & BluesConcerts

Average customer review: 3.5 star rating (3.3 Stars)

Number of reviews: 27



5.0 star rating Stan from Avon, Ohio


The Band was tight......Mike Leonhart and the brass were remarkable......Carolyn Leonhart and the Danettes sounded like angels.....Drummer, Keith Carlock never missed a beat......Herington's guitar was perfect.....Donald Fagan's voice and keyboards were on the money....Walter was smiling down!.....Perfect sound with a great light show......Hotter than the 104 degree Toledo Zoo show in 2011.....

5.0 star rating Bob Wheatley from Louisville, Kentucky


The sounds was tight and the lights were bright. Steely Dan at the Louisville Palace 3- Oct-18 was awesome. Yeah he could have played tracks from Morph the Cat. But what he did play was so tight it didn't matter. When Fagan goes (god forbid) slide in a replacement and keep on rolling. Nice venue for jazz. Close parking and bars and restaurants.

5.0 star rating Lester from Las Vegas, Nevada


DATELINE: Venetian Theater, 4/28/19 After many thwarted attempts to see the band live, me and the misses settled in the lovely and acoustically solid VT. The entire performance was reminiscent of an old school R&B jazz review which should be no surprise. Excellent set list that covered all the bases albeit the inclusion of "FM" (too Top 40 considering the band's deep catalog, but easily digestible for the audience) and "Dirty Work" which is a tremendous song with David Palmer's plaintive vocal but "lounge-y" as done by the female backup artists. With the exception of hard core Dan fans and budding music students (a master class if ever there was one) the crowd appeared to be ancient Midwesterner's who on a lark dropped by on their way to the Kwik-E-Mart to get a gallon of vanilla ice cream and Hershey's syrup. (See: FM) with no thought of stepping out. Perhaps Nevada's lax cannabis law accounted for the malaise but methinks 8:00pm was bedtime for many. Too bad, great show!

5.0 star rating STEVEN P from Las Vegas, Nevada



5.0 star rating Steven Schuyler from Boston, Massachusetts


Over the last 25 (!) years, my two daughters and the family have seen Steely Dan perform about 6 or 7 times. Older daughter Stephanie bought 8 tickets in the first balcony of the 150+ year old Orpheum Theater for Friday's opening night performance ("Aja and greatest hits"). I should contextualize last night's experience to say that my daughter had seen the Dan last week in New York (where David Crosby sat in for a surprise rendition of "Wooden Ships") and that our first family concert was to see them at the so-called Tweeter Center, when the kids were maybe two and six. We had a great dinner at Pho Pasteur, right around the corner, and then walked up to the Orpheum, which is an intimate setting for a concert. The band was tight, Donald's voice was stronger than ever. Watching the drummer perform is actually mesmerizing! The set list was "something for everybody." The crowd was generally above 50, and obviously digging it, but not more than my 25 and 29 year old daughters!

5.0 star rating PenguinScott from Houston, Texas


Hit after hot in the Woodlands Pavillion last night, it was such a thrill to see this band of talent supporting Donald's distinct vocals. Loved how each member had their time in the spotlight. This was not about Donald Fagan, it was about the songs, crafted to perfection in the studios and played honest to that perfection giving each familiar song its own special delivery. The opener, Snarky Puppy, was enjoyable and it was nice to see how earnest the lead was in recognition of the honor to open for the legendary Steely Dan. What a thrill it was to see this show in person.

5.0 star rating AD Houston from Houston, Texas


Considering his age and the fact that he has lost his long term partner, Donald Fagen still delivered the goods to a fond and equally aging, sophisticated audience. His team of virtuoso musicians led by Musical Director Jon Herrington delivered a tight set list with the occasional departure from the original recordings with just enough flavor to deliver the intended moment of extreme pleasure. My only suggestion would be to start earlier in the evening and lose the opening act so that the merry band of old hippies in attendance can get their fill before arriving home around midnight.

5.0 star rating Wendi Ludington from Syracuse, New York


I thought the show was amazing. Donald Fagen's voice is as strong as ever. Just disappointed they didn't play one of my favorites Deacon Blues. Overall great show and Syracuse Amphitheater is a great venue!

4.0 star rating Lamont from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania


The mix FOH wasn’t that good at all

4.0 star rating Alan Turgiss from Boston, Massachusetts


On November 17th Steely Dan preformed a selection of random stuff along with a flawless execution of the Aja Album. The band was as expected, musically tight, and locked in on an expanded rifts and highlights which all previous viewers have encountered over the years. The musicianship and presentation were top notch as the presented list of greatest hits. Donald Fagen’s performance and vocal were spot on along with great solo’s from: Keith Carlock on drums; Jon Herington & Connor Kennedy, guitar; Walt Weiskopf and Roger Rosenberg, saxes; Michael Leonhart, trumpet; Jim Pugh, trombone; and vocalists Carolyn Leonhart, Catherine Russell, LaTanya Hall and Cindy Mizelle. We enjoyed this show tremendously. Great catalog along with great performance.

4.0 star rating Luanne from San Francisco, California


Loved the show at the Concord Pavilion California last night! But also agree on sound quality - muffled at times! This is our third show and loves it when the music is crystal clear!

4.0 star rating Terry Darden from San Diego, CA


I have loved Steely Dan for years and was thrilled to finally have the opportunity to see them with Steve Winwood when I bought the tickets in January 2020 for a June 2020 show. The show got Covid-postponed twice so we finally got to see the show on May 28, 2022. We were so disappointed that Steve Winwood no longer accompanied Steely Dan, but were still excited to see the show. Donald Fagan played and sang his heart out, but his biggest strength is in his ability to select great musicians and backup singers! Our biggest disappointment was that he selected to sing so few of his prior very popular songs. They still sound great but would have loved to hear more of their hits that we knew.

4.0 star rating Alan from Houston, Texas


I’ve been listening to Steely Dan for years and admire their tight sound. On Friday night at the Woodlands Mitchell Pavilion Center they fully met all expectations! The song list was perfect, however, Donald had a hard time hitting his notes and had to lean back away from the Mic half the time. The back up singers were able to fill in the gaps but it was tough not to be disappointed not hearing the lead vocals clearly. I think Donald may need to bring the key down a notch or two to be able to hit his high notes otherwise, the vocals just did not pierce the sound of the music. Overall it was still a musical treat to listen to the band and admire their deep song list.

3.0 star rating King John from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania


Steely Dan was fantastic , as expected, but the sound system in Heinz Hall really sucked. The vocals were muffled to the point that the lyrics were usually unintelligible and were totally overshadowed by the instruments - especially the drums, which often drowned out the horn section. I had invited a friend at the last minute because my wife was ill and, although he was familiar with Steely Dan's hits, he could not understand 90% of the lyrics.

3.0 star rating Clem from Richmond, Virginia


Sold out event. Very good. However, yet another year when their Deep Tracks were not played, e.g. Boston Rag and Any World and Everything You Did. All due to lack of having his partner

3.0 star rating Bill from Boston, Massachusetts


I’ve been to 4 Dan concerts in last few years. They never play anything off Two Against Nature; favorite album. Why is that? They also hold back on Pretzel Logic and Gaucho. Very disappointing.

3.0 star rating from Portland, Oregon


I love Steely Dan! They’re gifted, talented, incredible band. Yet, I wanted to be standing up the whole time. I felt I could have if they played their top songs. It only happened the last two songs. They could really get a crowd going if they made sure they played their five top-selling songs. I’m sure they want to play new stuff. But, us old geezers need the old standard HITS!!! Love you Steely Dan. Come back to us and help us stand up and rock and roll the whole night!!!

3.0 star rating Rob Cox from Washington, District of Columbia


We were given the tickets by neighbors who could not attend at the last minute - $195 each, which if I had paid that money, I would not feel that I received value for my money. It may be time for Mr. Fagan to retire, his voice does not carry well. He also did not seem to appreciate his other musicians on stage, and seemed a bit of a loner, in his own band.

3.0 star rating Bill Turner from Alexandria VA.


(June 2002) I saw Steely Dan at Wolf Trap last night. For me, the concert fell into the trap that many reunion tours fall into: the band -who is somewhat tired of playing its crowd-favorites for the 500th time- tries to "upgrade" its music. Danger! Danger! The songs are now hardly recognizable. SD last night added so much additional music to its songs that they became hardly recognizable. A five minute song from the Aja album became a nine minute version with drawn out guitar and horn rifts. This is okay for one or two songs, but NOT for the entire playlist. Additionally, SD had four signature songs that were known to the masses during its run in the 1970s and 1980s. They played two of them last night. Most of the patrons have not seen this great band live for some time (if at all). In addition to appealing to the studio musicians in the audience, the group should also appeal the average SD fan. Last night they certainly did not.

2.0 star rating Rb from Las Vegas, Nevada


While I was really looking forward to this I have to say I was disappointed. Here’s why. The theater was perfect- my seats were great. Unfortunately mr fagans voice was in bad shape this night. But as he said- you have to roll the dice. So that wasn’t the only thing. As a long and loyal dan fan- I found that the songs they decided to play were just to vanilla . They had such a tremendous cast of musicians And could pull off anything , really. I would have liked to hear them play some more stuff from royal scan and Aja ( Jazier) but also after all of these years a little more interpretation of their own music . I really like some of the covers of the steely dan songs - particularly by the jazz crowd, and with the band they have I don’t think it would be much of a challenge to them to experiment a little. They certainly have toured a lot, and for folks like me - I just want a little more from my favorite band ever!

2.0 star rating Andy Skaff from Boston, Massachusetts


I went to the Steely Dan Show Saturday Night at the Orpheum Theater in Boston. I kept waiting for the pace to pick up. Started by playing the entire Night Fly-Donald Fagen record which put the whole audience into snooze mode. Even the Steely Dan songs that were eventually played were somewhat odd choices. Never really got rockin' in any way. The show was extremely well rehearsed, sounded great, very professional. But I think it left most fans wanting more great Steely Dan songs. Too many solo Fagen songs. Never got the crowd going.

2.0 star rating Al Ray from Memphis, Tennessee


I was a huge fan back in the day, however, very disappointed at The Dan in the Garden. The setting and night was perfect... then came the music... poor sound quality and it really appeared that Dan lip synced many of the songs. Many of the big hit songs...were almost unrecognizable. I have never seen as many people get up and leave a concert so early on. However, you still have to give this amazing guy his respect, at 74 his is still doing his thing.

1.0 star rating from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania


Why put on rock concerts with inferior sound system . Spend some money get some state of the art speakers up high you can't here squat in the balconey. I keep going thinking it will change, never does. That was my last one. Wish I could have heard just how great the band was.

1.0 star rating Barb from Rochester, New York


Very muffled sound on vocals. Very disappointed as I paid $99 to see Steely Dan. Great venue, although costly to park.

1.0 star rating Jim N from San Diego, California


I am and will always be a huge Steely Dan fan. I was privileged to see them 5 or so years ago at the Hollywood Bowl and that was one of the best concerts I had ever seen. Tonight’s concert was huge disappointment, lack luster sound, mediocre song selection and Donald Fagen’s voice was barely audible. The back-up singers did a gallant job but we’re not able to makeup for Mr Fagen’s lack luster performance. I had been waiting since 2020 to see this concert, postponed twice due to COVID and the crowning blow was Steve Winwood was taken off the show and replaced with Snarky Puppy, whoever they are. The whole event was a massive letdown.

1.0 star rating Carl from San Diego, California


Went to steely Dan concert last night what a terrible show . First of all it took the band forever to come out and play they played one hit song then played jazz music what a waste of money then they ended with reeliing in the years . They played maybe 4 of there hit songs I was waiting for there greatest hits and got nothing. Don’t waste your time or money on Steely Dan with out Walter there just a jazz band thumbs down!!!!!!!

1.0 star rating K.B. Ganley from San Francisco, California


Disclaimer: We bought out tickets about 3 years ago for Steve Winwood. When we found out he was not going to open, tried to get $ back. It was NOPE. We had expensive seats. Close up. Smuched together like it was meant for small children. Ouch. 1st "bad" was when the opening band thanked Steely Dan for allowing them to open for them, " They could have hired a piano trio." That set a very bad tone...they were replacing a legend. Then saying SD. was "the best band in the world" I almost dropped my $25.00 drink trying not to laugh. They keep the audience waiting for about 45 minutes with NO music, restless and bored, buying more overpriced alcohol. Fagan never once mentioned Winwood or Amy Mann who he dumped, never W. Becker. Played 1 or 2 songs we knew from good ol' KFRC. Doing some research, he's in the middle of lawsuits with Becker's family...hum, maybe he wasn't allowed to play songs he didn't write? We left early,as did many of us "kids". Rudeness, boredom, uncomfortable seats, TONS of $ spent. Not a good evening.


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