I have spent the last few months working on a real labor of love project. There are quite a few professionally shot videos of Steely Dan in concert floating around the Internet and YouTube, but the quality is all over the place since they're mainly just hastily made copies of the house video feed. I have tried to find as many of these recordings as I can, and clean them up to look and sound as good as possible.
The video on all of these has been upscaled to 1080p using Topaz Video Enhance AI (easy to use, but took 12-24 hours to render each video!). I also did some brightness and color correction. The audio was very labor intensive... I did some noise reduction, heavy EQ adjusting, multiband compression, and stereo widening to improve the sound, and I used Izotope RX 7's Music Rebalance tool to split the audio into separate tracks for bass/drums/vox/other sounds so I could process those elements individually and blend it back into the mix.
CONCERTS WITH VIDEO:
1993-09-12 Mountain View, CA at the Shoreline Amphitheatre with special guest Boz Scaggs
A great snapshot of the early reunion days. There's MP3 style compression on the audio in the source I have, so I couldn't fix that, but otherwise it sounds fantastic. Boz Scaggs plays guitar on Black Friday.
1993-09-16 Nashville, TN at the Starwood Amphitheatre - VERSION 2
I had originally remastered this concert a few months ago, and it absolutely took off in popularity on YouTube more than any of my other videos except for Storytellers, and this was frustrating because the video quality was truly terrible since it was from a VHS tape of God knows what lineage. However, I recently found a better copy of this concert! The video is infinitely better, and the audio is also a little better than before, so I have remastered that one as well.
1996-07-21 Manassas, VA at Nissan Pavilion at Stone Ridge
My friends, this is a good one. There are some songs in this set list that don't show up in concert often like Any Major Dude Will Tell You and the reworked Rikki Don't Lose That Number. More importantly, this has the unreleased Wet Side Story, and the fiery early version of Jack of Speed with Walter on vocals.
UPDATED WITH NEW AND IMPROVED VERSION APRIL 2023
2000-01-28 Steely Dan's Plush TV Jazz Rock Party - Raw footage from 1st night of taping
When they filmed the PBS special/live DVD, they recorded it over two nights. Here is the footage from the entire first night's concert. Some of these songs made the final product, some they used the performance from the other night, and some of the songs didn't even make the cut to the final product at all!
2000-06-25 Detroit/Clarkston, MI at Pine Knob Music Theatre
Some real magic here! Walter takes vocals for Daddy Don't Live and Monkey in Your Soul, and I am a big fan of how those two sounded in concert. The set list is filled with other cool stuff, like The Boston Rag, Night by Night, and West of Hollywood. Also, there's a brief power outage issue during Josie and they have to restart the song, but I added a little Easter egg to the video there.
2003-07-23 Costa Mesa, CA at Pacific Amphitheatre with special guest Dean Parks
This was the 2003 tour opener, yet the band already sounds in fine form. The set list is a bit different than most shows the rest of that tour, including The Last Mall, Do It Again, and Reelin' in the Years. Dean Parks appears at the end to play guitar on FM. Great show!
2003-08-11 Detroit/Clarkston, MI at Pine Knob Music Theatre
One of my personal favorites. It's a combo of a great variety of songs plus the band hitting on all cylinders, and the quality of the recording is pretty solid. Highly recommended.
2003-08-23 Camden, NJ at Tweeter Center
This show has the same set list as the Clarkston show from a couple weeks before it, and the performance is great. The audio quality isn't quite as good here, as I had to splice it together from multiple incomplete sources.
2006-08-12 Charlotte, NC at Verizon Wireless Amphitheatre with special guest Michael McDonald
Here is a really good quality recording of a great concert. Unlike almost all the other audio I've been working from, this one was in stereo! The addition of Michael McDonald to several songs makes for a nice change of pace too.
2006-09-04 St. Louis, MO at UMB Bank Pavilion with special guest Michael McDonald
The 2006 tour closer, which is neat since they celebrate the behind the scenes guys before the encore. A couple of minor set list changes here compared to the Charlotte show, including Chain Lightning. For the video, good news is that it's widescreen! (Even if not quite as good quality as the video from the Charlotte show). Despite the source audio being mono, this one sounds really nice.
2007-07-25 Bonn, Germany at Museumsplatz
Beautiful video quality here for a great show! I love Walter's solo on Bad Sneakers in this concert, and during his Hey Nineteen rap you get to hear him talk about "pitching woo in earnest" in a beautiful forest, "which parenthetically happens to be an enchanted forest."
2008-07-13 Cincinnati, OH at National City Pavilion
IMPORTANT! 1) I actually attended this concert, so it's really neat to have a recording of it anyway, and 2) this was perhaps the best concert I've ever attended. It was one of those nights where everybody in the band was locked in tight and taking it to the next level. And the set list! The Fez, Everything You Did, Parker's Band, an incredible fucking version of Glamour Profession, and Walter singing Gaucho!! Oh, and bonus points for Walter's Hey Nineteen rap. Must watch!
2011-07-08 Los Angeles, CA at the Greek Theatre - "Aja Night"
You Got The Bear!!! How cool is that?? And just to sweeten the deal even further, Your Gold Teeth and Everything Must Go. Walter avoided "the usual cornball rap" since it's Hollywood where things are "weird," and boy does it make for a fun one.
(Removed from YouTube, let me know if you want a copy)
2011-09-17 New York, NY at the Beacon Theatre - "Rarities Night"
I have finally remastered the Rarities Night concert! I was able to find video for about half of the songs, and for the other songs I just did a slideshow. It's pieced together from audience recordings of varying quality, but other than a couple of the last songs it actually sounds very nice.
2016-06-18 Hollywood, CA at the Hollywood Bowl, featuring the Hollywood Bowl Orchestra
A unique concert, as it's the only time Steely Dan has performed with an orchestra. I had two audio sources to work with thankfully, since noise was a serious problem on both recordings, and even after doing a lot of very careful noise reduction, I was only able to retain the treble and presence of the instruments by combining the two audio sources. I left in some noise because any more reduction sucked all the feeling out of it. This video is a mix of some different video clips I found filmed from the audience, along with some slideshow stuff to fill in the gaps.
Steely Dan's Plush TV Jazz Rock Party - DVD release
Here is the live DVD with the video AI upscaled to 1080p so it looks stunning, and I boosted the bass ever so slightly.
While there is some great live music in this special, the highlight is hearing Walter and Donald answer the audience questions, because regardless of how simple or silly the questions are, the answers are always entertaining. I absolutely cracked up at the useless oversized map part.
AUDIO ONLY CONCERTS:
1974-03-20 Los Angeles, CA at the Record Plant
Great performance, and you can really feel the energy now thanks to the improved sound quality!
1993-08-22 Saratoga Springs, NY at the Saratoga Performing Arts Center
This is the earliest soundboard recording I've found from the '93 reunion tour, neat to hear them still finding their sound on the same songs they'd do in later recordings in the coming weeks. (The soundboard recording doesn't have the last few songs of the night, I was able to find alternate sources for most, but this is missing the encore unfortunately)
1993-09-01 St. Louis, MO at Riverport Amphitheatre
This soundboard recording started off overly bright with almost no bass, and it was in mono. I've managed to bring it some much needed fullness. I was putting the finishing touches on this one the other night when I found out that Warren Bernhardt passed away. Unfortunately this recording is missing only one song from the concert, the performance of his song Tuzz's Shadow, but thankfully we get a chance to hear his wonderful playing throughout the rest of that night.
1993-09-02 Houston, TX at the Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion
This might be the best sounding recording we have from the '93 tour, definitely worth checking out!
1994-09-02 Dallas, TX at the Starplex Amphitheatre
Excellent soundboard recording, with more reverb than most Steely Dan soundboard concert recordings for a unique vibe. Down in the Bottom and Hard Up Case both are exceptional here!
1994-09-17 Irvine, CA at the Irvine Meadows Amphitheatre
Stunning sound quality on this soundboard recording, a little more room sound and reverb than Alive in America but just as good in its own way, and Walter performs both Down in the Bottom and Hard Up Case!
1996-08-17 George, WA at the Gorge Amphitheatre
The last American stop on the Art Crimes tour. Great soundboard audio, and it gives us a killer version of Jack of Speed with Walter on vocals, My Waterloo and the unreleased Cash Only Island.
2000-07-15 Mansfield, MA at the Tweeter Center
Taken from an assisted listening device, this recording has some static at times, but it doesn't ruin the whole show or anything.
2000-07-22 Manassas, VA at the Nissan Pavilion
This one was hot! As in the recording itself was too hot and there was some distortion and clipping. I did my best to clean that up, and it ended up sounding very nice!
2000-09-10 London, England at the Hammersmith Apollo
I was surprised how good this soundboard recording ended up sounding after I did some work on it, it was technically in stereo but sounded almost mono, and I was able to really liven it up and make it sound much more full and rich.
2003-10-02 Los Angeles, CA at the Universal Amphitheatre
Best audio quality of any recording from the 2003 tour. John Beasley stopped by for a guest appearance on FM, and speaking of keyboard players I think Ted Baker was in fine form throughout this whole show.
2006-08-27 Mansfield, MA at the Tweeter Center
Another soundboard recording from the Steelyard Sugartooth McDan tour featuring Michael McDonald. I had to clean up a lot of noise from this one, but it still sounds really nice.
2007-07-14 Rotterdam, Netherlands at Ahoy from the North Sea Jazz Festival
A beautiful soundboard recording, even if it's short set list.
2009-07-22 Boston, MA "Aja and The Royal Scam Night" at the Wang Theatre
This one is pretty cool as they played both the Aja AND Royal Scam albums back to back. They also played The Boston Rag and a cover of Dirty Water to salute the Boston crowd. Phenomenal sound quality!
2009-09-03 Chicago, IL "Royal Scam Night" at the Chicago Theatre with special guest Larry Carlton
I was inspired to go ahead and remaster this one after listening to a wonderful interview Inside Musicast did with Larry where he mentioned this run of shows -- he agreed to appear, but then realized he hadn't played most of these songs in decades and had to go re-learn them! Fantastic interview from a great podcast, go check it out. In the meantime, you ABSOLUTELY must listen to this one. The sound quality is almost as good as the officially released live albums, and how cool is it to get to listen to Larry Carlton play with them for an entire show?
2011-07-22 Toronto, Ontario, Canada at the Molson Amphitheatre
An excellent soundboard recording, other than the bass guitar being mixed extremely low. I did my best to repair that, so it isn't perfect, but overall the sound is fantastic on this one. Your Gold Teeth is a big highlight for me!
2014-07-12 Inglewood, CA at the Forum
Recording taken from an assisted listening device... I had to fix some serious reception issues, but now it sounds great outside of some static here and there in the last few songs.
The Dukes of September Rhythm Revue 2010-09-29 Los Angeles, CA
While this is not a Steely Dan video, and Walter does not appear at all, this fun show is still worth a watch. Stunningly good audio quality too.
(Removed from YouTube, let me know if you want a copy)
Donald Fagen 2006-03-18 Chicago, IL with special guest Howard Levy
Another video sadly without Walter, but worth sharing with people who love Steely Dan. And I wanted to share this one in particular because it's a show that I taped myself, and I have yet to find any other recordings of, so it's nice to get this one into circulation. The quality is... not great. I did my best to clean it up, but my recording equipment at the time was limited by my being a broke college student. That also meant I didn't have the greatest seats either! I still did my best to clean this recording up and make it sound better, and since it's audio only I included a slideshow too.
Donald Fagen 2006-03-03 Westbury, NY
I was putting the final touches on this one when I heard about us sadly losing Jeff Young. Take some time to sit down and listen to his wonderful playing during one of the early shows from Donald's 2006 solo tour. Phenomenal sound quality here, and even a couple brief video clips (which are low quality, but better than nothing).
Donald Fagen 2006-03-07 New York, NY with special guest Martha Wainwright
Another Donald solo show, this one with the infamous surprise Martha Wainwright appearance halfway through the night grinding the momentum to a halt according to a good chunk of the crowd. Fantastic soundboard audio for this one to go with an audience member's camerawork.
Donald Fagen 2006-03-13 Toronto, Ontario, Canada at Massey Hall
Pristine sound quality and a neat setlist, this one includes my favorite live version of the DF+WB song Snowbound.
Donald Fagen 2006-03-28 Oakland, CA at the Paramount Theatre
This soundboard recording features a rarely heard performance of Maxine.