Deacon Blues

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For the racehorse, see Deacon Blues (horse).
"Deacon Blues"
Single by Steely Dan
from the album Aja
B-side "Home at Last"
Released 1977
Format Single
Recorded 1977
Genre Jazz rock
Length 7:36
6:33 (7" version)
Label ABC
Writer(s) Walter Becker, Donald Fagen
Producer(s) Gary Katz
Steely Dan singles chronology
"Deacon Blues"
"FM (No Static At All)
Aja track listing
"Deacon Blues"

"Deacon Blues" is a song by Steely Dan from their 1977 album Aja. It peaked at number 19 in the Billboard charts.[1]

The song, while contrasting winning and losing in life, does so by taking as an image the perennial powerhouse college football team, the Alabama Crimson Tide. Group member Donald Fagen said, "Walter (Becker) and I had been working on that song at a house in Malibu. I played him that line, and he said, 'You mean it's like, they call these cracker assholes this grandiose name like the Crimson Tide, and I'm this loser, so they call me this other grandiose name, Deacon Blues?' And I said, 'Yeah!' He said, 'Cool! Let's finish it!'"[2]

In a 1994 AOL chat interview with Becker, someone asked him about the inspiration for "Deacon Blues". He answered, "It was an outgrowth of a specific mood that pertained at a given time," and later added, "...I remember the night that we mixed that one thinking that it was really good and wanting to hear it over and over which is never the case."[3]

"Deacon Blues" was Steely Dan's fifth Top 20 hit on the Billboard Hot 100 chart in the US, where it peaked at #19 in 1978. The song remained in the Top 40 for eight weeks.[4]

The Scottish pop/rock band Deacon Blue are thought to have taken their name from this song.[5] William Gibson's book Mona Lisa Overdrive features a gang called the Deacon Blues.



  1. ^ Steely Dan USA chart history, Retrieved May 28, 2012.
  2. ^ "News". Rolling Stone. Retrieved 2013-07-23. 
  3. ^ "AOL Chat". 1994-11-17. Retrieved 2013-07-23. 
  4. ^ Whitburn, Joel (2004). The Billboard Book of Top 40 Hits, 8th Edition (Billboard Publications)
  5. ^ "Deacon Blues". Retrieved 2009-12-31. 
  6. ^ Classic Albums: Steely Dan – Aja (documentary, 2000)

External links[edit]