I guess that joke missed.Walter Becker died on September 3, 2017.
Steely Dan went on tour following the release of their debut album, "Can't Buy a Thrill". The band toured for three years before Becker and Walter Fagan decided they hated hated their live sound.
After seeing them in Moline last summer, their live sound is spectacular.
Becker and Fagan (and Becker especially) hated touring.
They did have something like a band early on, but I have always fundamentally seen them as two songwriters in the studio working with a talented but rotating supporting cast. I would imagine they probably saw themselves like that more, too.