Donald Jay Fagen (born January 10, 1948) is an American musician and songwriter, best known as the co-founder, lead singer, and the principal songwriter of the rock band Steely Dan (along with partner Walter Becker).
Fagen is known for his use of jazz harmonies, elaborate arrangements, and attention to detail. Following the break up of Steely Dan in 1981, he launched a successful, if sporadic, solo career in 1982, spawning three albums to date, with a fourth album set to be released in 2011. Fagen has toured with Becker since Steely Dan reunited in 1993
Fagen was born in Passaic, New Jersey, on January 10, 1948 to Joseph "Jerry" Fagen, an accountant and his wife Elinor. From the age of 12 to 17, Elinor sang in a hotel band in upstate New York's Catskill Mountains until bouts of stage fright (a condition her son would later be afflicted with) forced her to discontinue performing live. Fagen would later recall: "I can't ever remember when there was silence around the house. She was either playing records or singing."