Tuesday, March 18, 2008
Yahoo LAUNCHCAST Song Of The Day-Traffic
Song:Light Up Or Leave Me Alone
Album:The Low Spark Of High Heeled Boys
The British group Traffic started out as a standard Beatles influenced group but as the personnel changed they added jazz, folk and R & B elements. It also proved to be a launching pad for Steve Winwood's successful solo career. Steve Winwood (born May 12, 1948 in Birmingham, England) started out at age 15 as lead singer of The Spencer Davis Group (Gimme Some Lovin'). He quit the group in 1967 and started Traffic with guitarist Dave Mason (born May 10, 1946 in Worchester, England), drummer Jim Capaldi (born Aug. 2, 1944 in Evesham, England) & sax player Chris Wood. Traffic signed with Island Records in the UK and were released in the US by United Artists. They had success on the UK charts but conflict between Winwood & Mason caused Mason to leave in Jan. 1968. He came back but was fired in Oct. 1968. Traffic split up and Winwood started the supergroup Blind Faith with Eric Clapton, Ginger Baker & Ric Grech. They flopped after one record. Winwood was recording a solo album but Capaldi & Wood joined and it became the hit Traffic LP John Barleycorn Must Die. Traffic's sound had changed significantly to include jazz elements. They were less of a pop group now. In preparation for touring and the follow up album The Low Spark Of High Heeled Boys, Traffic added Ric Grech on bass, Jim Gordon on drums and Reebop Kwaku Baah on percussion. The album sold a million copies. Light Up Or Leave Me Alone is a Jim Capaldi song and like most of the album is about the rigours of touring. The album was released on CD in 2002 with a bonus live track. Traffic was waylaid by Steve Winwood's health problems. After some personnel changes, the group continued but Capaldi and and then Winwood had solo success. Occasionally Traffic has reunited over the years until Jim Capaldi's death on Jan. 28, 2005 ended the group permanently. Here's Traffic performing Light Up Or Leave Me Alone in Santa Monica, CA 1972.