Steely Dan Sunday, “Aja [Live]” (1995)

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*** STEELY DAN SUNDAY INDEX ***

It’s interesting to note that Alive in America ends the way the 1994 concerts actually started.

The title song from the album Aja made its complete debut on Steely Dan’s second tour of the 90’s in 1994. It actuality is was the opener for the tour after the band played the instrumental medley. In fact, in ’93 the audience was teased with the drum solo and sax solos from the song but not the complete version. This version does the original justice.

Georg Wadenius and Walter Becker both roar on their respective guitar solos. Becker in particular seems inspired and Wadenius wisely elects not to try to duplicate the original Denny Dias solos. Bill Ware let’s his presence be heard on vibes and Warren Bernhardt tickles the ivories. The song gets even better with an amazing improvisation from Chris Potter on tenor sax before Dennis Chambers lets it fly during his drum solo.

Could they have picked an actual concert closer from the ’93 or ’94 tour such as “F.M.,” “My Old School” or even “Tea House On The Tracks” as the closer to Alive In America? Sure. But what song better represents Steely Dan?

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Preston Frazier

Preston Frazier

Preston Frazier is a bass-playing lawyer living in Atlanta. His first Steely Dan exposure was with an eight-track cassette of 'Pretzel Logic.' He can be reached at slangofages@icloud.com; follow him on Twitter: @slangofages. Contact Something Else! at reviews@somethingelsereviews.com.
Preston Frazier
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