Walter Becker dies at his own home at the age of 67, according to the official website of Legendary Bands.
Along with his fellowmate Donald Fagen, he has written some of the greatest hits of 1970s, including ‘Rikki Don’t Lose that Number’, ‘Do It Again’ and ‘Reelin’ in the Years’.
The cause of death has not been announced but Bceker went through a surgery last month and missed the Classic East and West concerts of Steely Dan in July while he was recovering from an ailment.
Fagen told Billboard, ‘Walter’s recovering from a procedure and hopefully he’ll be fine very soon.’ Doctors advised Becker to not leave Malibu home after the operation.
Fagen paid tribute to his bandmate as ‘an excellent guitarist and a great songwriter.’
He said, “Walter Becker was my friend, my writing partner and my bandmate since we met as students at Bard College in 1967. Walter had a very rough childhood — I’ll spare you the details. Luckily, he was smart as a whip, an excellent guitarist and a great songwriter. His habits got the best of him by the end of the seventies, and we lost touch for a while. In the eighties, when I was putting together the NY Rock and Soul Review with Libby, we hooked up again, revived the Steely Dan concept and developed another terrific band. I intend to keep the music we created together alive as long as I can with the Steely Dan band.”
Walter Becker, left, pictured with Donald Fagen, also of Steely Dan, in 1977.
Steely Dan members Walter Becker (L) and Donald Fagan won Best Pop Vocal Album for ‘Two Against Nature’ at the 43rd annual Grammy Awards in Los Angeles on February 21, 2001