Around 2009 I went through a weird period where the only thing I listened to besides rap was Steely Dan. Young and confused, still ridden with angst but not as angry as the peachfuzzed manchild of my teen years, I no longer found the sturm und drang of zit-poppers and teenage fascists an effective antidote to this sadistic gauntlet we call life. Instead, I found it in the limp soft-funk of two hideous paleface nerds crooning about dying behind the wheel and suicidal last-stand faceoffs with cops. And man, were they smooth! Not even Michael McDonald could resist their combination of easy-listening plastic jazz and sun-cracked noir yarns.
In this clip Donald Fagen recites the beginning of the Steely-sampling Peter Gunz & Lord Tariq's "Deja Vu (Uptown Baby)," and if they hadn't sued for 100% of publishing rights it might have been a fun lil moment. But as Peter Gunz notes, these switched-on hepcat freaks got a little too groovy with the litigation, resulting in this bizarre legal outcome: "So Donald Fagen wrote, 'I'm quick to slide off and slide this dick up in ya wife.' That's who gets credit for writing those types of lines." Walter Becker is equally insufferable and awkward as he bends over giggling, then quickly goes straight-faced like Fagen's robot lapdog, but he's also a former bandmate of noted asshole Chevy Chase, so maybe it's company culture to be rly "caustic" and "off-putting." Though I wish they weren't such living embodiments of rockism's worst impulses, it's worth enjoying as a surreal cyclical blip in history where your dad's favorite band raps lines to a B+ '90s rap hit that samples one of their songs. Anyway, here are some other reluctant contributions Steely Dan made to rap history.
"If You Want It" - The Lox & Ma$e ("Black Cow")
"Gas Drawls" - MF Doom ("Black Cow")
"Sassy Ways" - 213 ("Black Cow")
"Cutting Rhythms" - Tone Loc ("Black Cow")
"Eye Know" - De La Soul ("Peg")
"How It Gotta Be" - The UMC's ("Peg")
"Don't Trust 'Em" - Ice Cube ("Green Earring")
"Walk Into The Sun" - Organized Konfusion ("Green Earring")
"Hard As Hell" - Ant Banks ("Home At Last")
"Stripped And Pistol Whipped" - Big Shug & Guru ("Home At Last")
"Champion" - Kanye West ("Kid Charlemagne")
"Everybody Knows Me" - K-Solo ("The Royal Scam")
"Ride Up" - Ice City w/ Freeway & Joe Budden ("The Royal Scam")
"Dress Up" - Sleepy Brown ("Midnight Cruiser")
"Cemetery Made" - Mr. Serv-On & C-Murder ("The Fez")
"For Those Who Slept" - Bizzie Boyz ("The Fez")
"Live Or Die" - Naughty By Nature w/ Mystikal, Silkk The Shocker & Phiness ("Third World Man")
"On And On" (Alternate Mix) - Godfather Don & Jazz ("Josie")
"Antemeridian" - Count Bass D ("I.G.Y." - Donald Fagen)
"No Static At All" - 3rd Bass ("FM")
"We On 1" - DJ Rashad ("Aja")
And here's a lil R&B bon bon for all my '90s babies still crushin on Ashley Banks.