Tuesday, September 09, 2014

Today's Happy Hour Soundtrack, or, Where's My Flying Car?

One half of Steely Dan with the quirky I.G.Y...

Standing tough under stars and stripes
We can tell
This dream's in sight
You've got to admit it
At this point in time that it's clear
The future looks bright
On that train all graphite and glitter
Undersea by rail
Ninety minutes from New York to Paris
Well by seventy-six we'll be A.O.K.

What a beautiful world this will be
What a glorious time to be free 

(full lyrics here)
I was a big, big Steely Dan fan in the wayback, so it was only natural that I'd buy Mr. Fagen's first solo effort and I was NOT disappointed.  I love this album; it's very much like the Steely Dan albums that preceded it before Mr. Fagen and Mr. Becker decided to go their separate ways.  Which is to say a jazzy, upbeat collection of tunes with interesting lyrics, wonderful (and catchy) music with lots o' hooks, and spectacular production values.  What's not to like?

It's a mystery to me as to why I never bought another of Fagen's albums (and none of Becker's), given I like the guy(s) so much.  That said, "The Nightfly" is one of the better efforts to come out of the '80s, an era not particularly known for great, or even good, music.  Here's an excerpt from that last link:
The Nightfly was certified Platinum in both the US and UK, and produced two popular hits with "I.G.Y. (What a Beautiful World)" and "New Frontier". It also received several 1983 Grammy Award nominations. This relatively low-key but long-lived popularity led the Wall Street Journal in 2007 to dub the album "one of pop music's sneakiest masterpieces."[2]
Sneaky? That's an interesting term to describe what's clearly a masterpiece.  But, Hey!  There's prolly no finer endorsement than that given by the Journal.

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