Steely Dan – The Royal Scam

A lot of the songs on 1976’s The Royal Scam got me into Steely Dan when I was first playing guitar, and Larry Carlton’s work on this album made me a big fan of him (and The Crusaders) and of Walter Becker and Donald Fagan. If it hadn’t been for songs like Kid Charlemagne and Don’t Take Me Alive, it probably would have taken me longer to appreciate all of their work since it was the guitar that drew me in a lot more. But it seemed inevitable anyway. The greater rock focus on their songs usually results in it being ranked lower than say 1979’s Aja, but the other singles The Fezand Haitian Divorce show their versatility and humor. I bought The Royal Scam at Amoeba Music in mint condition, you can find it in many places too. Fans of Steely Dan are going to buy this record, and it is a great album, but non-fans who want to try a more rocking version should try it too.