Saturday, May 14, 2011


Traffic started out with Steve Winwood, Dave Mason, Jim Capaldi, and Chris Wood after Winwood left The Spencer Davis Group. From their beginning, in 1967, they were quite popular in their native England, though success elsewhere was slower in coming. Their first three albums combined psychedelic rock and soul with elements of British folk music, giving them a unique, groundbreaking sound. Their most popular single was Dear Mr. Fantasy, from the album of the same name.

Traffic reached a much wider audience when, on the dissolution of Cream, two thirds of that band, one third being Eric Clapton, joined Steve Winwood (during a temporary Traffic disbanding) to form Blind Faith, which also included future Traffic member and sometime Family man, Ric Grech.

In 1970, after the disbanding of Blind Faith, Winwood set about recording a solo album. After Chris Wood and Jim Capaldi became involved, the decision was taken to release this album (eventually what would become John Barleycorn Must Die) under the Traffic name, despite the absence of Dave Mason.

Around 1971, Mason left for good (having been in and out of the band from the beginning), and the the band experienced a variety of personnel changes. The resulting band added some jazzy elements to their style, pioneering the jazz-rock genre, and the compositions tended to stretch out over longer lengths. With their albums The Low Spark of High Heeled Boys (1971) and Shootout at the Fantasy Factory (1973) their popularity in the US grew. After two more albums, personnel problems resulted in the band calling it quits (but for a brief reunion in 1994 without Wood, who had died in 1983). Winwood, Mason, Capaldi, and Wood all pursued solo careers, with Winwood garnering the most success.

November 18, 1970
Fillmore East - New York City

Superb recording.


01. Introduction by Bill Graham
02. Medicated Goo
03. Pearly Queen
04. Empty Pages
05. Heaven Is In Your Mind
06. Forty Thousand Headmen
07. John Barleycorn Must Die
08. Who Knows What Tomorrow May Bring
09. Every Mother's Son
10. Glad/>Freedom Rider*
11. Means To The End
12. Dear Mr. Fantasy

* - some minor glitches from master reel

Steve Winwood (guitar, organ, vocals)
Jim Capaldi (drums)
Chris Wood (piano, sax, flute)
Ric Grech (bass)


Anonymous said...

I wonder if there are any live Traffic boots out there with Dave Mason on them?

Anonymous said...

Sure! Would love to hear that.
This Fillmore West show here is an excellent post. The quality of the recording is really good. The wife and I were digging to it in the music room last night (party night!). It went down really smooth. Thanks again.

24HRDEJAVU said...

I will post that one and another Traffic selection in the next couple of days I enjoy Traffic myself. I got a chance to see them late 90's during their Far From Home tour

Timmy said...

Really great sound & performance. You are too good to me, THANX..........

Anonymous said...

By any chance do you have the Fillmore West concert from 1968? Part of it wound up on Last Exit. Would love to hear the whole show. Thanks

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