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TRAFFIC

Eclectic Prog • United Kingdom


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Traffic picture
Traffic biography
Formed in Birmingham, UK, in 1967 - Disbanded in 1975 - Partial reunion, with Winwood and Capaldi, in 1994.

TRAFFIC were formed in 1967 by Steve Winwood, Chris Wood, Jim Capaldi and Dave Mason. Winwood had previously found fame in the SPENCER DAVIS GROUP whose biggest hit single was "Keep on running". While Traffic's sound then was very much of its time, the emphasis on Winwood's keyboards and Wood's wind instruments set them apart from their guitar driven peers.

The band's first single "Paper Sun", gave them instant chart success, reaching No. 5 in the UK. The follow up, Mason's "Hole In My Shoe", is probably their best know single, being a mildly amusing piece of psychedelia. Winwood was reportedly unimpressed with the song's success though, feeling it misrepresented his vision for the band.

The first album, "Mr Fantasy" followed the same year, but before it had even been released, Mason had left. Winwood's position as the dominant member of the band was already well established, his (and also Wood and Capaldi's) jazz orientation appearing at odds with Mason's lighter melodic style. Mason quickly returned however for the recording of the band's second album "Traffic" in 1968, writing or co-writing many of the tracks including his often covered "Feelin' Alright". It appears the band realised at that time that without Mason they would struggle to write sufficient material to meet their contractual obligations.

Mason was subsequently ejected from the band in 1969, Winwood later announcing that the band had run its course. Island records released what appeared to be a posthumous album of b-sides, singles, studio outtakes and live recordings in the form of the appropriately named "Last Exit". Winwood though was still contracted to Island for 2 more albums, so the following year he started work on a solo album, calling in Wood and Capaldi to assist. The TRAFFIC name was quickly resurrected, and the album, "John Barleycorn Must Die", was released. For many, this is Traffic's best album. While the title is taken from a traditional folk song, the music is a wonderful blend of prog, jazz, rock, and folk.

Following that album's release, Rick Grech (ex-FAMILY) joined, to ease the pressure on the multi-instrumental Winwood. Various subsequent line up additions and changes took place, including another return by Mason. The live album "Welcome To The Canteen" (strangely not credited to TRAFFIC, but to the band members individuall...
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Buy TRAFFIC Music


Traffic GoldTraffic Gold
Remastered
Island 2005
$6.44
$18.12 (used)
The Low Spark Of High Heeled Boys (Remastered)The Low Spark Of High Heeled Boys (Remastered)
Extra tracks · Reissued · Remastered
Island 2002
$5.33
$2.88 (used)
Mr. FantasyMr. Fantasy
Remastered
Island Uk 1999
$5.55
$2.98 (used)
Traffic - 5 Classic AlbumsTraffic - 5 Classic Albums
Box set
Universal 2017
$12.43
TrafficTraffic
Remastered
Island Uk 1999
$5.37
$3.73 (used)
Far From HomeFar From Home
Virgin Records Us 1994
$18.95
$1.79 (used)
Heaven Is in Your Mind/Mr. Fantasy [Vinyl]Heaven Is in Your Mind/Mr. Fantasy [Vinyl]
SUNDAZED MUSIC 2017
$22.30
$16.69 (used)
Welcome To The Canteen (Remastered)Welcome To The Canteen (Remastered)
Reissued · Remastered
Island 2002
$5.21
$3.82 (used)
When The Eagle Flies(180 Gram Audiophile Vinyl/Anniversary Limited Edition)When The Eagle Flies(180 Gram Audiophile Vinyl/Anniversary Limited Edition)
Limited Edition
Friday Music 2015
$29.11
$7.99 (used)
John Barleycorn Must DieJohn Barleycorn Must Die
Extra tracks · Remastered
Island Uk 1999
$5.00
$3.18 (used)

More places to buy TRAFFIC music online Buy TRAFFIC & Prog Rock Digital Music online:

TRAFFIC discography


Ordered by release date | Showing ratings (top albums) | Help Progarchives.com to complete the discography and add albums

TRAFFIC top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.62 | 174 ratings
Mr. Fantasy
1967
3.40 | 51 ratings
Heaven Is In Your Mind
1968
3.43 | 131 ratings
Traffic
1968
2.74 | 81 ratings
Last Exit
1969
3.91 | 340 ratings
John Barleycorn Must Die
1970
4.07 | 305 ratings
The Low Spark Of High Heeled Boys
1971
3.81 | 170 ratings
Shoot Out At The Fantasy Factory
1973
3.31 | 111 ratings
When The Eagle Flies
1974
3.07 | 53 ratings
Far From Home
1994

TRAFFIC Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.40 | 59 ratings
Welcome to the Canteen
1971
4.10 | 77 ratings
On The Road
1973

TRAFFIC Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

3.77 | 11 ratings
Live at Santa Monica
1991
3.77 | 9 ratings
The Last Great Traffic Jam
2005

TRAFFIC Boxset & Compilations (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

2.85 | 17 ratings
The Best Of Traffic
1969
3.00 | 1 ratings
Heavy Traffic
1975
2.82 | 2 ratings
More Heavy Traffic
1975
4.06 | 12 ratings
Smiling Phases
1991
3.92 | 5 ratings
Heaven Is In Your Mind. An Introduction To Traffic
1998
4.00 | 2 ratings
Feelin' Alright: The Very Best of Traffic
2000
3.38 | 4 ratings
The Collection
2002
2.09 | 2 ratings
20th Century Masters - The Millennium Collection: The Best of Traffic
2003
4.22 | 10 ratings
Traffic Gold
2005

TRAFFIC Official Singles, EPs, Fan Club & Promo (CD, EP/LP, MC, Digital Media Download)

TRAFFIC Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 The Low Spark Of High Heeled Boys by TRAFFIC album cover Studio Album, 1971
4.07 | 305 ratings

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The Low Spark Of High Heeled Boys
Traffic Eclectic Prog

Review by patrickq
Prog Reviewer

4 stars The Low Spark of High Heeled Boys is a very good album and the equal to its predecessor, John Barleycorn Must Die. In fact, I'd say it's nearly John Barleycorn Must Die II.

The first incarnation of Traffic had two viable lead vocalists, guitarist Dave Mason and keyboardist Steve Winwood. But when the group reformed for John Barleycorn, it was comprised only of Winwood (who also played guitar and bass), multi-instrumentalist Chris Wood, and drummer Jim Capaldi. Confusingly, when the band doubled in size for The Low Spark of High Heeled Boys, two of the new members, Jim Gordon and Rebop Kwaku Baah, were drummers/percussionists. Rounding out the six-piece was bassist Ric Grech. So Traffic had three members dedicated to percussionist, but no full-time guitarist.

Of the six compositions here, the four strongest are the Winwood-Capaldi compositions, all of which are sung by Winwood. Whereas Winwood did most of the singing on John Barleycorn, Capaldi sings lead on two songs here, "Rock & Roll Stew," written by Grech and Gordon, and "Light Up or Leave Me Alone," written by Capaldi himself. Both sound a bit out of place, but not because of Capaldi's vocals. "Rock & Roll Stew" is a good album-oriented rock song, reminding me a little of the Hollies, while "Light Up" sounds like the Doors, post-Morrison. Other than those two, the closest Traffic comes to a rocker here is the title song, featuring some surprisingly good lead guitar work by Winwood.

Despite the band's psychedelic proto-prog beginnings and its frequent jazziness, the fairest classification of Traffic as a prog-rock act "progressive folk." Indeed, half of The Low Spark of High Heeled Boys is comprised of three excellent folk-rock songs, "Hidden Treasure," "Many a Mile to Freedom," and "Rainmaker." Each is pastoral but not sing-song, and each balances the group's guitar-rock orientation with colorful chords and the judicious use of Wood's flute and Baah's congas.

The Low Spark of High Heeled Boys represents Traffic at their best, so I'd recommend it to anyone whose interest in the band has been piqued by having heard a song or two of theirs on the radio. Fans of prog-folk will also probably find plenty to enjoy here.

 Mr. Fantasy by TRAFFIC album cover Studio Album, 1967
3.62 | 174 ratings

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Mr. Fantasy
Traffic Eclectic Prog

Review by patrickq
Prog Reviewer

2 stars Mr. Fantasy seemed like a no-brainer - - an album that had to be good. First, I'd been very impressed with Traffic's 1970 album John Barleycorn Must Die and its follow-up, The Low Spark of High Heeled Boys. I also liked Traffic's debut single, "Paper Sun," released a few months before Mr. Fantasy. There was also the fact that I knew of and liked the title track, "Dear Mr. Fantasy."

In opening the proceedings, "Heaven is in Your Mind" signals that this album would at least acknowledge the Motown affinity singer-pianist Steve Winwood had displayed on the Spencer Davis Group's "Gimme Some Lovin'." A good start - - but as it turns out, "Dear Mr. Fantasy" and "Heaven is in Your Mind" are the only strong tracks on Mr. Fantasy.

According to Wikipedia, Traffic recorded Mr. Fantasy between April and November of 1967. At the end of May, the Beatles' monumental Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band was released, and it's hard to picture what Mr. Fantasy might've sounded like without the Beatles influence. The individual songs on Traffic's debut don't sound like Fab Four knockoffs, but from the stylistic approach (including having two divergent songwriters) to the diverse instrumentation to the juxtaposition of thoughtfulness (e.g., "No Face, No Name, No Number," "Hope I Never Find Me There") and amusing irreverence ("Berkshire Poppies" and especially "Hole in My Shoe," which appeared on the US release of the album), Mr. Fantasy is heavily Beatlesque. But unlike other late-1960s LPs sometimes considered "proto-prog,"Mr. Fantasy has not aged well.

Aside from the derivative feel, a major deficiency is the mismatch between Dave Mason's clever, from-the-head compositions, and the more from-the-heart songs jointly credited to Jim Capaldi, Winwood, and Chris Wood (or sometimes just to Capaldi-Winwood). Thus, the album is a collection of disparate songs rather than a synergistic whole à la Sgt. Pepper. But ultimately, my issue with Mr. Fantasy is the quality of the material. "No Face, No Name, No Number" and "Coloured Rain" are decent album cuts, which leaves six sub-par tracks. Replacing three of these with the singles "Smiling Phases," "Here We Go Round the Mulberry Bush," and "Paper Sun" would probably have made for a three-star album.

If you're a Traffic enthusiast or a fan of any of the individual members, you probably already have Mr. Fantasy and/or the superior US variant Heaven is in Your Mind. For anyone else I'd suggest any Traffic compilation which includes both of the title songs: "Dear Mr. Fantasy" and "Heaven is in Your Mind," including the two-CD Traffic Gold, the single disc sets 20th Century Masters - The Millennium Collection: The Best of Traffic and Feelin' Alright: The Very Best of Traffic, and the four-CD Winwood collections The Finer Things and Revolutions - - The Very Best of Steve Winwood. Most of these also have "Smiling Phases" and "Paper Sun."

P.S. There are just over a thousand singles and albums inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame. Sixty-nine of these are rock albums released after 1966 (this includes punk, country rock? any kind of rock). So we're talking about albums like Abbey Road, All Things Must Pass, Born to Run, Blood on the Tracks, Hotel California, Rumors, Tommy, and the White Album. Mr. Fantasy is also one of those albums. So take my advice with a proverbial grain of salt.

 The Low Spark Of High Heeled Boys by TRAFFIC album cover Studio Album, 1971
4.07 | 305 ratings

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The Low Spark Of High Heeled Boys
Traffic Eclectic Prog

Review by TheCrimsonPrince

5 stars This was the release the band was building up to their whole career. For me, their earlier albums are all-over-the- place, but this is where they succeed in finding their sound.

The band leans more towards rock than prog, ditching the symphonic overtones and heavy instrumentation even in their longest song. Each song is slow and bluesy but not dragging; Light Up Or Leave Me Alone, notably.

Hidden Treasure and Rainmaker are my personal favorites, but who could forget their most recognizable hit, The Low Spark of High Heeled Boys? Traffic's lyricism hits its peak on this 12 minute track, but you can interpret it however you like. I lose it whenever the piano solo comes up - it is the pinnacle of jazz-rock blended with eclectic rock.

 John Barleycorn Must Die by TRAFFIC album cover Studio Album, 1970
3.91 | 340 ratings

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John Barleycorn Must Die
Traffic Eclectic Prog

Review by TheCrimsonPrince

4 stars This album is one of Traffic's greatest records, with such classic songs like Glad and the title track. Steve Winwood's wit shines once again. However, one major grievance I have with this album is that some of the tracks are poorly mixed, especially Glad. Some of the songs are great, like the two I mentioned plus Stranger to Himself, but the others are just good. Every Mother's Son is a bit boring, notably, but other than that, Traffic remain consistently entertaining and jazzy throughout. The most I can say about this album is that there's no moment that stands out, because all of the songs sound relatively similar - still, consistency matters.
 John Barleycorn Must Die by TRAFFIC album cover Studio Album, 1970
3.91 | 340 ratings

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John Barleycorn Must Die
Traffic Eclectic Prog

Review by patrickq
Prog Reviewer

4 stars I'll bet that there are plenty of serious prog-rock fans who haven't heard John Barleycorn Must Die in its entirety. I'm guessing this because there are so many "classic" albums I've never listened to closely. Plus, while Traffic is respected by many, it has quite a few degrees of separation from the big names - - Pink Floyd, Genesis, Jethro Tull, etc. There really isn't an obvious "gateway band" leading to Traffic. Stomu Yamash'ta, maybe?

I got this cassette around 1990 from a radio contest. I was the correct caller, and maybe had to answer a question. The winner got to stop by the station offices and choose a couple of cassettes. (My other choice was an Elton John tape: Goodbye Yellow Brick Road, I think.) The version of John Barleycorn Must Die I'm reviewing is the first US CD issue (Island, 1990). I would describe the sound as flat, or compressed in its dynamic range, compared to what remastered CDs from the 1970s usually sound like. Nonetheless I'd say the production is good (most of the album is remastered on a box set I have, and these tracks sound good).

Traffic is listed under the "eclectic" subgenre, but of course that doesn't describe the music. In terms of progressiveness, John Barleycorn Must Die is roughly equal parts progressive folk and jazz rock. And given that Steve Winwood is the bandleader and main vocalist - - drummer Jim Capaldi provides harmony vocals on two songs - - there's some soulfulness as well. Guitarist/bassist/singer Dave Mason, who had appeared on the group's previous albums, is not on John Barleycorn Must Die.

Winwood plays all of the keyboard, guitar, and bass parts on the album except for the some of the organ parts on "Empty Pages," played by Chris Wood. Wood also plays all of the wind and reed instruments. Capaldi plays the drums on every song but "Stranger to Himself," on which Winwood is the drummer. The playing is solid throughout, with Winwood and Wood displaying some virtuosity, especially on "Glad."

The only weakness, in my opinion, is with the quality of some of the songs themselves. Side one of the original vinyl, the jazzier side, is made up of excellent compositions: "Glad," "Freedom Rider," and "Empty Pages." The centerpiece of the second side, "John Barleycorn," is a centuries-old English folk song arranged by Winwood to good effect. But the remaining songs, "Stranger to Himself" and "Every Mother's Son," are relatively bland. I'm reminded of the title of a 1972 Winwood-Capaldi composition: "(Sometimes I Feel So) Uninspired."

But while they are certainly the weakest songs on John Barleycorn Must Die, "Stranger to Himself" and "Every Mother's Son" nonetheless are each a good fit, a logical part of a cohesive album.

Overall, a very good album, and one I would recommend to any fan of progressive rock.

 Far From Home by TRAFFIC album cover Studio Album, 1994
3.07 | 53 ratings

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Far From Home
Traffic Eclectic Prog

Review by aglasshouse

3 stars Traffic is by far one of my favorite bands of all time. The innovative music they cranked out in such an early stage of progressive rock was nigh unparalleled by many other bands. Traffic split up rather early in the seventies (in '74), but at the same time had released a studio album practically every year up to that point since their debut in 1967. The split couldn't be more appropriate. Traffic was releasing great material seemingly effortlessly, until that year with When The Eagle Flies, debatably their weakest album of the period. They went quiet for three decades until in 1994, they released a sudden comeback album out of the blue. This was none other than Far From Home, a haphazard assemblage of 90's pop rock and very vague progressive undertones. Was it as great as any of the classics?

No, not really. Now you could say that with such an old band as Traffic, thinking that an album released thirty years after their golden era would be as great as when the band was young is wishful thinking. I don't believe that Far From Home should match any of their old albums in the slightest. To me, a comeback album is one that is more of a callback to old material, replicating it slightly but with other sounds and gadgets to make up for weak points. This is especially the case when an album is such a flash-fire like Far From Home was (the band released and nothing subsequently). But this didn't happen. FFH was a complete overhaul of Traffic's sound, demolishing the eclectic folk influence, the progressive construction, and any semblance of what made Traffic Traffic. If every element of the band was removed, then what exactly was left? Nothing particularly remarkable.

Far From Home, in layman's terms, is a glorified Steve Winwood solo album, the only difference being that drummer Jim Capaldi from the original lineup joined him on it. The album is over-saturated, much like Winwood's albums, with harmonized synth keyboards, slow echoing drumming, and soul backing vocals. To call Far From Home a prog record would be a stretch, but you could make a case for it. The album does have many Latin and salsa jazz influences, no matter how badly used they may be. Funnily enough this album features some of Traffic's longest tracks, which have little-to-no experimentation in them; this may be a trap for you if you're going into the album looking for some hardened progressive rock, so it's better to be aware. Winwood's vocals in their early stages were quiet, yet when required were able to belt out power notes. However after spending the 80's successful with just using the latter, Winwood's over-enthusiastic yell became the centerpiece of the vocal arrangements. Capaldi, who I know is a great drummer, is restricted within this genre with slow, linear drum patterns that rarely shift from their solid mold. Mick Dolan and Davy Spillane appear as newcomers to the band, on rhythm guitar and Uilleann pipes (a type of Irish bagpipe) respectively. Even with their presence though, it's undoubtedly primarily Capaldi and Winwood doing the work.

The album has some pretty good moments, the title track is stand-able and features one of those super-filtered guitar solos from Winwood at the end of the song. The tracks that I always come back to are that of 'Nowhere Is Their Freedom', a punchy film-score esque epic, and the wonderful closing instrumental 'Mozambique'. The other tracks are forgettable, but I wouldn't necessarily go so far as to say they wouldn't appeal to anybody because this music definitely still has an audience.

Far From Home is not a fantastic record. It has more ups than downs, and unfortunately isn't that great of a resurrection of such a classic band. Yet if you are open minded I'm sure this album would have it's fans. My two- cents don't mean anything in the wider picture. Happy listening.

2.5 rounded to a 3.

To think of it, maybe Traffic needed a little more Mason after all. If anyone can do campy right, it's him.

 Welcome to the Canteen by TRAFFIC album cover Live, 1971
3.40 | 59 ratings

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Welcome to the Canteen
Traffic Eclectic Prog

Review by thwok

4 stars Welcome to the Canteen demonstrates what an entertaining live band TRAFFIC must have been! The band's instrumental skills are well-known, and probably don't need to be discussed by this reviewer. There aren't many bands, in my opinion, who can make a 10 minute song, or longer, consistently interesting. One of the best things about this album is the fact that they play a variety of songs from different albums.

I only have two relatively minor complaints. The first is that Reebop's contributions, as skilled as he is, are not essential IMO. I much prefer the original "Gimme Some Lovin" to this rearrangement. The other is regarding the order of the album. It's unbalanced, with all the longer songs at the end. It must have been a frustrating problem in the early 70's. These days, of course, it's easily fixed. On the whole, Welcome to the Canteen is an excellent live album by one of the most unique and skillful bands of the 1970's.

 On The Road by TRAFFIC album cover Live, 1973
4.10 | 77 ratings

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On The Road
Traffic Eclectic Prog

Review by aglasshouse

5 stars On The Road is the second and last live album from Traffic not too long before they broke up. '73 was undeniably a big year for rock, with Pink Floyd's Dark Side of the Moon, Selling England by the Pound by Genesis, and to a lesser extent Shoot Out At the Fantasy Factory was released in that year. Like any progressive rock band Traffic has to live up to other amazing live performances by other bands of it's caliber. Welcome to the Canteen wasn't terrible two years prior but it's undoubtedly pushed aside by the fantastic jam that this is.

With a very small track-list of only four songs, The performance does lack slightly on the variety they could have had if they had played from their earlier albums. But the epics are the ones to come first which is always pleasant. 'Low Spark' is obviously the main event here; the icing on the cake if you will. With a run time that goes about five minutes or so over the studio version, Traffic really does play their hearts out over this one. Their playing on it is unbroken and contrasts very well with the original, albeit with some more jazz and psychedelic tidbits in the longer time-span. The band does rock pretty hard as well with 'Shoot Out' where the tempo's quickened to a beating pace. Again, flawless performance with Winwood's fantastic playing. '(Sometimes I Feel So) Uninspired' was spiced up a little to the point where it seemed more like 'Sometimes I feel so inspired'. Even 'Light Up or Leave Me Alone', perhaps my least favorite track on Low Spark was made great with a longer run time for more experimentation and rocking capabilities. Truly marvelous.

A great staple on the progressive live performance scene if I've ever seen one.

 Traffic by TRAFFIC album cover Studio Album, 1968
3.43 | 131 ratings

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Traffic
Traffic Eclectic Prog

Review by aglasshouse

4 stars While 1967's Mr. Fantasy was inspired by the psychedelic bands of the time, Traffic evolved rapidly and suddenly with the release of their second album the coming year. Folk rock entered the stage in a much more prominent role, mostly carried by Mason's song writing. What came from the self titled was doubtlessly more structured than the prior, and acclaimed similar positive critical reception.

Traffic takes a different approach on the composition, with a theme of split sides; one being the bouncy, folk Mason end where all songs are catchy and sing-song. The opposite end is led by the haunting Winwood, whose writing I've always preferred due to it's stylistic nature of more prominent coinciding elements. The music especially from Winwood ages much better than the 60's-born folk that Mason wrote. I won't deny that Mason struck gold a few times, although songs like the slightly annoying 'You Can All Join In', mostly meant as a sort of sing-a-long (living truly up to it's name) tone, can get degrading the more times you cycle through the album.

As for instrumentation, consistency is something the album does best. Sometimes vocals from Mason, Winwood and Capaldi can get a little strained to match the pitch of the song, but the actually instruments maintain the beat steadily and don't find much issue in jumping back and forth across the different styles presented each track.

This self titled from the late 60s is of course emblazoned with the stamp of the decade, but is less of a product of the times as Mr. Fantasy unduly was. Unique variation is something that is found in large amount with all of the tracks. Anyone, prog fan or not, could find this enjoyable in some way. Fun for the whole family!

 Shoot Out At The Fantasy Factory by TRAFFIC album cover Studio Album, 1973
3.81 | 170 ratings

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Shoot Out At The Fantasy Factory
Traffic Eclectic Prog

Review by Guillermo
Prog Reviewer

4 stars In December 1971, Ric Grech and Jim Gordon left TRAFFIC, and Jim Capaldi went to record a solo album to Muscle Shoals Studios in Alabama with the famous musicians from The Muscle Shoals Rhythm Section (drummer Roger Hawkins, bassist David Hood, keyboard player Barry Beckett, and guitarist Jimmy Johnson), plus The Muscle Shoals Horns. That first solo album was titled "Oh How We Danced", and six of the eight songs from that album were recorded in Alabama, while two other songs were recorded in London, one of which ("Open Your Heart") was recorded with TRAFFIC`s line-up of their previous album titled "The Low Spark of High Heeled Boys". Some of the eight songs from that album also have appearances from Steve Winwood, Chris Wood, Reebop and Dave Mason. The album was released in April 1972, and at least in my country, Capaldi had a Hit Single with "Eve", the first song from that album which was (and still is) played in some FM Radio stations in my city. It seems that by that time Steve Winwood became ill with peritonitis, but when he recovered from that illness, Capaldi suggested to invite Roger Hawkins and David Hood to join TRAFFIC. They joined the band and started playing concerts, one of which was filmed and released as "Live at Santa Monica" in 1972. Later the band went to Jamaica to record a new studio album, titled "Shoot Out at the Fantasy Factory". which was released in February 1973.

This album is less inspired by Folk music and most songs are more inspired by Rock music in general, with Winwood playing some distorted guitars in several parts. This can be listened more clearly in the title track of the album which also has some very good Latin music influenced percussion playing from Capaldi and Reebop. "Roll Right Stones" has a very good electric sax solo played by Chris Wood (with some "wah-wah" sound effects) in the extended final instrumental section of this song. "In "Evening Blue" Winwood plays acoustic guitars and maybe this is the most "relaxed" song in this album. The next song, "Tragic Magic", was composed by Chris Wood (all the other songs from this album were composed by Winwood and Capaldi), and this instrumental song has a lot of influences from Jazz Rock music with very good saxophones played by Wood. The final song in this album, and maybe the best from this album, is "(Sometimes I Feel So) Uninspired", a song with somewhat sad lyrics. Maybe Capaldi (the lyricist) was a bit tired of being working in the music bussiness, so he wrote the lyrics of this song. The music in this song is particularly very good, and this song includes very good lead guitar parts played by Winwood. In this album Capaldi did not sing lead vocals on any song, but his backing vocals are listened more clearly in "Roll Right Stones". Jimmy Johnson and Barry Beckett are mentioned with a "thanks to" in the credits section in the album s cover, but it is not clear at least for me if they also played in some parts of this album.

For their 1973 tours the band also invited Barry Beckett to join the band on keyboards, giving more freedom to Winwood to play guitar or keyboards as he wanted apart from singing lead vocals on most songs, and also giving freedom to Chris Wood who previously sometimes also played keyboards in some songs while Winwood played guitar or other keyboards. I think that this line-up of the band was one of the best they had, with the three members of The Muscle Shoals Rhythm Section being very good and experienced musicians, playing very well. This line-up recorded the very good live album titled "On the Road" in Germany in April 1973. Jimmy Johnson also joined the band but as sound engineer for the concerts. Unfortunately, all these very good musicians from The Muscle Shoals Rhythm Section left the band in September 1973 (but they carried on working with Capaldi in some of his solo albums from the mid seventies). Capaldi then returned to play drums with the band, while their new bass player was Rosko Gee, from Jamaica. Reebop stayed with the band until mid 1974, with him apparently appearing uncredited in two songs from TRAFFIC`s next and then last album (titled "When the Eagle Flies", which was released in September 1974) before they split in December 1974.

This album, "Shoot at the Fantasy Factory" is very good. It also has a vey good recording and mixing, and like their previous album from 1971 ("The Low Spark of High Heeled Boys") it also has a very original cover design done by Tony Wright.

After a long time of not listening to some of TRAFFIC`s albums, it really was very good and enjoyable for me to listen to them again recently. TRAFFIC was a very good band, in my opinion, despite all the changes in personnel they had.

Thanks to easy livin for the artist addition. and to Quinino for the last updates

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