Regarding guitar solos, the Steely Dan canon is singularly remarkable. No other artist has so many great solos by so many great players. A who’s who of guitarists guitarists appears on the Dan’s first seven albums.
Becker and Fagen were studio perfectionists who ensured each song had the perfect guitar player with the right mojo to bring magic to every track.
Best? There are many bests. How can you compare “Reelin in the Years” to “Kid Charlemagne?” You can’t. They are arguably personal bests for their respected guitarists, Elliot Randall and Larry Carlton.
Best to choose your favorite from this list of heroic performances.
- Peg – Jay Graydon
- Reelin in the Years – Elliot Randall
- Rikki Don’t Lose that Number – Jeff Baxter
- Don’t Take Me Alive – Larry Carlton
- Black Friday – Walter Becker
- Bad Sneakers – Walter Becker
- Kings – Elliott Randall
- The Fez – Walter Becker
- Do it Again – Denny Dias
- Chain Lightning – Rick Derringer
- My Old School – Jeff Baxter
- Night by Night – Jeff Baxter
- Kid Charlemagne – Larry Carlton
- Third World Man – Larry Carlton
- Your Gold Teeth II – Denny Dias
- Sign in Stranger – Elliot Randall
- FM – Walter Becker
- Bodhisattva – Denny Dias + Jeff Baxter