A New York street has been named after Steely Dan’s Walter Becker
Over a year since his tragic passing, a New York City street has been named after Steely Dan’s Walter Becker.
Back in September of 2017, the music world was rocked by the news that Steely Dan’s Walter Becker had passed away at the age of 67. Having served as one of the group’s co-founders back in 1972, Becker remained one of the band’s only constant members alongside Donald Fagen.
Sadly, Walter Becker passed away on September 3rd of 2017 with his cause of death being revealed as oesophageal cancer. However, the late musician has now been granted one of the highest honours in his hometown of New York City.
Back in July, it was announced that New York City Council member Karen Koslowitz had successfully spearheaded a campaign to have a street in Forest Hills, New York renamed after the late Steely Dan founder.
“Walter’s fans have decades of experience holding ‘Danfests’ throughout the country, and they always find innovative and eclectic ways of celebrating,” explained Walter Becker’s widow Delia, at the time. “It will undoubtedly be a fun and free gathering to honor and commemorate Walter as only they can!”
Now, Becker has been immortalised forever in the streets that made him, with New York’s Q104.3 radio station holding a ceremony in Queens to officially rename the street that he grew up on as Walter Becker Way.
In related Steely Dan news, Donald Fagen was met with criticism late last year when he sued Walter Becker’s estate in an effort to retain the band’s name.
“Decades ago, when we started the band, Walter and I had a contract,” Fagen explained to Rolling Stone in December. “It was really a simple thing that a lot of bands have – if someone resigns or is fired or dies, they sell their rock & roll stock back to the company.”
“So we signed this thing and it ended up being that Walter and I were the remaining partners…50/50 partners, and the idea was that if somebody dies the other guy would essentially run the band and take control of the band, so we’re just trying to defend that contract.”
“I would actually prefer to call it Donald Fagen and the Steely Dan Band or something like that,” Fagen explained of his new performances, noting promoters persuaded him otherwise. “That’s an ongoing debate. To me, Steely Dan was just me and Walter, really – it was like a concept we had together.”