Steely Dan & Steve Winwood @ Rod Laver Arena, Melbourne (Thu 27 Oct 2011)

went to this 12 years ago

So, I don’t really know Steely Dan at all, and my exposure to Steve Winwood is pretty much limited to his “Back In The Highlife” album of 1986. I don’t know any Traffic or Spencer Davis Group songs, nor do I really know any Steely Dan music, except for the big hits you occasionally hear on commercial radio during peak hour when your CD player is busted.

There are a few Steve Winwood songs I really quite like. Valerie, Roll With It and Back In The Highlife are three that weren’t played tonight. He did play Higher Love though, which was great to hear, but the arrangement was a bit odd.

The band consisted or Winwood on guitar and hammond, another guitarist, a percussionist, drummer and multi-instumentalist (who was considerably younger than the rest of the band) who played keys, sax, trumpet and a variety of other things. One thing that was really missing was bass. Most of the set sounded pretty thin, and in the live context, really could have done with some fat bass to give it some solid grounding.

The solos were also out of control. Every song seemed to have an extended guitar or sax solo, which did get a bit much by the end.

My in-laws (who we went to the show with), as well as a lot of the older folk in the crowd obviously loved the show, but there were lot’s of murmerings that more songs could have been played, and a few less solos.

Apart from the tedium of guitar wankery, it was an excellent show.

Steely Dan were up next, and as it turned out, I knew a fair bit of their stuff. No, I wouldn’t class myself as a fan, but they played extremely well and the crowd did love it. Their drummer (Keith Carlock) was particularly amazing- one of the best I’ve seen.

They played the hits you’d expect, such as Dirty Work (sung by the backup singers) and Reelin’ In The Years.

It was, I’ll freely admit, a long night for a non-fan, but enjoyable nonetheless. I don’t think I’d see either band again, but I’m glad I got the chance, as I daresay their touring days are numbered.

Steve Winwood


Steely Dan


Did you see Steely Dan & Steve Winwood @ Rod Laver Arena, Melbourne (Thu 27 Oct 2011)? So far, 4 people have commented, why don't you too?

went to this 12 years ago