VOLUME 124, sent February 28, 1998

Topics in this issue:
  1. Re: Inspiring Songs
  2. Re: Blues Brothers 2000
  3. Guitar playing
  4 - 11. Capaldi/Mason tour
 12. Let's All CALM DOWN
 13. Steve in the Wall Street Journal
 14. Web-site

From:             "Jason Nickerson" 
Subject:          Re: Inspiring Songs
Date sent:        Sun, 22 Feb 1998 22:07:17 -0700

> From: KristinArt@aol.com
> Date: Thu, 12 Feb 1998 15:06:41 EST
> Subject: Inspiring Songs
>      The song I love the most of Steve Winwood's is..(DRUM
>      ROLL!!)....
>  "Everyday (Oh Lord)", off of 'Refugees of the Heart' (
>  Winwood/Jennings ).
> That song speaks right to my soul!!!! (As do many of his songs).

I agree, one of my favorite songs of mine also :-)

> Go listen to it ----RIGHT NOW!!!!!!!

I feel your frustration.  The reason why it may not speak to a lot of people
is because harsh music is the name of the game, not music like this :-))

>    Well, while I'm at it!>>>> also I think "In the Light of Day",
>    and "I will be here" deserve some credit off this album. (Do
>    you still call them 'albums'?-Ha!)

Yes, one of my favorite albums...

Here is an excerpt from the special SP #100 which Bobbie encouraged

From: "Jason Nickerson" 

My favorite of all his singles, is "In the Light of Day".  I believe this one song
is the pinnacle of his solo career.  His power of soul reigns here, that very few
artists can match.  This one song encapsulated, I believe, everything that Steve
Winwood stands for.  "Roll With It" is my favorite album because it got me
through some real tough times.  Thanks, Steve Winwood...

From:             Harlanfan@aol.com
Date sent:        Mon, 23 Feb 1998 12:56:31 EST
Subject:          Re: Blues Brothers 2000

     To all who read Steve Seim's review in the last Smiling Phases, I offer a
rebuttal.  And Steve, please don't take this personally because it's not intended
that way.

     The blues jam scene at the end of the movie was terrific!  Steve Winwood
was in excellent form and I thought he stood out from the crowd in his vocal
performance.  He really seemed to be giving his all musically for this scene,
and also was genuinely happy to be there.  Yes, I too wish he would have been
featured more, but just to be included with the other legendary talent on that
stage says something in itself.

     However, that one scene was the only thing worth seeing is this
disappointingly drab rip-off.  It was a direct retelling of the original movie
and an insult to the intelligence of the audience.  If a replay (poorly done)
of Elwood and his new siblings spending an hour "getting the band back
together," including having to convince each one of the old band members
(again) to rejoin the group is what a viewer was looking for then that viewer
was happy when s/he exited the theatre.  Yes, Elwood's going to visit "The
Penguin," yes Aretha Franklin is going to object and then sing and then give
in again, yes they're going to a tent revival with James Brown, yes the boys
will shame and abuse the gang into going along.   It's all been done before,
and much much better, in the original movie.

     At least John Belushi could sing a little.  John Goodman's attempt at music
is, at best, grating on the eardrums.  Dan can't carry the band, and the other
new members aren't exactly setting the blues world on fire, either. Which made
me appreciate Sam Moore's outstanding performance late in the show, as well
as the final jam session, that much more.

     Here's another example of how this show played down to a dumb audience:
You all remember how Dan pulled the Blues Mobile around by spinning the car
180 degrees across four lanes of traffic to fit perfectly in a parking spot. It was a
great scene!  And I loved it when he did it again in this movie, paying homage
to a neat trick in the original film.  But after he did it six times, my mind felt
numb with disappointment again.

     No huge car chase at the end?  I thank God for that, at least.  Although there
was one completely boring scene where they crashed about 100 cars. Enough
already!  Excess seems to be the proverbial middle name of this celluloid loser.

     I do have to agree with your statement that "one gets a certain feeling of
pride from seeing SW in it. . . I think in some ways being in a Blues Bros.
movie is sort of like being inducted into a blues hall of fame."  Amen.

     All in all, my advice is to rush out and buy the soundtrack.  Or, if you're
forced to see it in a theatre, close your eyes and just listen.  The music is
fantastic!  The movie sucks.

     Gary Bray

From:             BalletStks@aol.com
Date sent:        Mon, 23 Feb 1998 13:57:36 EST
Subject:          Guitar playing

It seems that as into it as SW fans seem to be, there's not many "gearheads"
I've been playing guitars a long time, and have seen all the greats, I saw SW
in the Filmore West @69-70 Steve played a 2nd edition Gibson Firebird, and
guitar was not his long suite . The singing, songwriting, and vocals more than
made up for it!! Hope he keeps working on it, Roll with it was a great step in
the right direction for my tastes, Thanks, Bart  P. S. did I mention Keyboard
playing #1!!! I'll keep trying to find out about those drums if it kills me!

Date sent:        Mon, 23 Feb 1998 12:05:58 -0500 (EST)
From:             "R.E. Kastner" 
Subject:         Capaldi/Mason tour

Dear SPers:

  I would like to second all the comments to the effect that THERE IS AND
is certainly no excuse for anyone billing the JC and DM  tour as a "Traffic

  Unfortunately, pettiness is commonplace in this world. But fortunately, it's not
Steve who is being petty.

  Re Steve Seim's comments about "Low Spark": isn't it interesting how SW
fans can have such a range of tastes. The songs that he calls the weakest on the
record are among my favorites. While I love the way Steve sings loud blues,
I also like the way he can get soft and lyrical. This range of expressiveness is
one of his strengths. I think that one reason Steve liked Traffic was because he
could explore these other styles.

  Finally, I wish people would avoid knocking Bobbie G. because she does a
fantastic job with the website.


Date sent:        Mon, 23 Feb 1998 12:36:55 -0500
From:             Bob Craig 

I concur with this group's feelings regarding the Traffic and Mason/Capaldi
connection, but there is one wildcard missing............

Chris Wood

No Chris, no Traffic.  They have all said that at one time or another.
Everything else is propaganda for self-serving or other interest.  Now, I don't
understand such a strong link to Chris, but maybe those who took the journey
with Traffic from 1967-74 can fill us in.  I always followed them then, but my
attention was always on SW.  It wasn't until 1976-77 that Wood's role changed
for me.  I remember seeing them for the first time in 1974, and Chris was OK,
but struggled (like he frequently did) with his equipment and equilibrium.  I
have heard Chris be absolutely brilliant, and then there were the other times.

Anyway, I support this outrage, I support that without SW there is no Traffic,
but I also believe enough in the things that SW and JC said in 1994 to convince
me that they believe in the Wood theory.  Mason was always a fringe player
that USED Traffic for his own interest, not that of participating in a band.

Finally, all respect for Mason went out the window for me in 1979 during a
meeting with him in Laguna Beach, CA (I lived two towns over in Mission
Viejo at that time).  I will not go into details here, but his behavior, attitude,
demeanor, and the rest were revolting.  I hope JC did some hard thinking
before signing on to this cavalcade.  A Traffic reunion?  Hardly!  How about a
celebration of Traffic's music.  That I could buy, but considering Mason is part
of this, well, then I'm not.

I close, humbly yours, with "Roll Right Stones" playing in the back.

Bob Craig

From:             sohi@aabc.dk
Date sent:        Tue, 24 Feb 1998 10:44:32 +0100

I have just finished reading volume 123, and I feel that I need to comment on
the JC/DM vs. SW conflict.

As I may have mentioned in a previous post, I have been a fan of SW since
1964 (yes, I'm an old guy of 46). I remember vividly how outraged everyone
was when Steve said "I want out" of the SDG and then retired to the cottage
with a bunch of completely unknown musicians. We all waited eagerly for the
first single, and quickly realized that Traffic was going to be much more
experimental than the SDG.

I first saw Traffic live in August 1968. Dave was there, and they played a
number of the songs from the second album, which had not yet been released.
Steve's role surprised me a lot, since he left most of the talking to Jim, and
generally just proved his almost uncanny skills as a musician.

I saw them again in 1971 with the six piece outfit, (no Dave), and frankly I did
not miss him. Again Steve seemed to prefer a background role, and this may be
part of the explanation why the "Jim did all the work" thing has started.

I feel very strongly that Traffic was and always will be Steve supported by two
very able musicians who both contributed a lot to the timeless music we still
love so much. Jim is probably the ideal drummer, and I will forever miss
Chris's beautiful flute-work on such classics as No Face, No Name and No
Number plus numerous other songs. The THREE-PIECE TRAFFIC to me is
the best of all the different versions.

I do with to stress that without Steve there would not have been a Traffic, and
as Shannon pointed out in SP123, Dave's revolving door attitude to the group
did not in any way affect the success (or the quality) of Traffic, but when Steve
decided to try a new avenue, there was no Traffic. Thank God that he decided
to involve the other two in the Mad Shadows project so that we got John

I do not particularly like the exploitation of the Traffic name by Jim and Dave,
but if that is what they need to sell tickets then good luck to them. After seeing
Steve in concert in July of last year it is very clear that he does not need any
gimmicks to attract the crowds. His unique voice and musicianship will always
be able to do that.


Date sent:        Tue, 24 Feb 1998 18:06:13 +1300
From:             Murray Dreyer 

Whilst everyone is talking about Dave Mason I thought I should add my
two cents worth regarding the man.

Although I clearly acknowledge his contribution to early Traffic, and his part in
what they were trying to achieve, In my opinion the best thing he ever did was
leave Traffic (the first time). Before anyone gets jumpy let me explain.

He left Traffic to produce a emerging English Band called Family. Their first
Album "Music From a Dolls House" is today still regarded as one of the great
debut albums from the late 1960's.

Produced by Dave Mason and including a Mason composition "Dolls House"
featured the incredible voice and lyrical talents of Roger Chapman and the late
Ric Grech (later of Traffic & Blind Faith) on Bass, Violin and Vocals.

Nearly 30 years on I am still a Roger Chapman fanatic (second to SW of
course) and have over 30 of his Albums from the bands "Family" through
"Streetwalkers" to his solo material from the early 1980's and on.

Roger Chapman is an acquired taste and its probably best to start with a Family
Album if you haven't heard him before. He has an incredible rock voice and
writes a beautiful Lyric over music with some interesting melodies and

Check him out if you are into something a bit wild and original.

I would like to know if anyone else made the same connection as I did all those
years ago.

Thanks Dave Mason as it was you who made Roger Chapman happen for me.

Murray D

Date sent:        Wed, 25 Feb 1998 15:14:01 -0500 (EST)
From:             Berkin Altinok 

Berkin is speaking listen all carefully.
Guys,, Guys,,, people, settle down, what is this adrenaline rush, i can not
believe what i am reading, What war? What hostile feelings? i must be out of
my mind? Everybody sounds like they have a problem with Traffic. The
mason\capaldi thing was fine, great but that was it. First of all I was not the one
who asked Jim About steve's commercial, it was somebody else, and Jim said
"he's lost it", it is true but he said in a humorous way. he  was giggling (I did
not know i was supposed to mention that, give me a break i have written the
post, the day after the show) I  with everybody else was positive that Jim was
kidding, I am sorry, maybe i am the only one who understands Jim's character,
and his homour, and when he said " tell that to Winwood" about Traffic, i felt
he just felt sad, because steve had done  a solo project and not another Traffic
album, but he did not say it as if he did not care or anything. Of course Steve is
Traffic, no body is saying It is not. How

In accordance, they are not using the name Traffic, they are not traffic, the
concert goes by "co-founders of Traffic", there is nothing wrong with that, it is
just the mentality of selling  a little more tickets. they are not as popular as
steve, so they just want to attract people. that's it. I am not defending them ,
because there is nothing to defend, no issue,  at hand. Yes they Sang traffic
tunes, so does Steve, these are all Joyous journeys people, please let's not spoil

I am again apologizing if i have caused any misunderstandings.

   Berkin has spoken.

From:             sohi@aabc.dk
Date sent:        Fri, 27 Feb 1998 08:03:49 +0100

If JC/DM really mean what they said on stage about who wrote what then why
did Jim introduce Steve at Woodstock 94 with the words "My friend for many
years, the greatest musician on the planet!!!"

Apart from "Feelin' Alright", what did Dave ever write that was truly
memorable?  I have always been surprised that Steve agreed to release "Hole In
My Shoe". Sadly, this song is what most people remember Traffic for.


Date sent:        Thu, 26 Feb 1998 18:49:42 -0600
From:             Craig Richards 

The Mason/Capaldi concert in Lawrence, KS was Great! I thoroughly enjoyed
it! They were introduced as Dave Mason and Jim Capaldi. I think all the
publicity as being associated with Traffic was just for name recognition. We all
know that you can't have Traffic without Steve Winwood. Nevertheless, they
played their hearts out. Their performance was tight and they didn't talk any
trash, just introduced the songs. The set list was pretty much the same as the
earlier shows, with the exception of not playing Gimme Some Lovin and
Shouldn't Have Took.  The highlights for me were the Traffic tunes, especially
40,000 Headmen and Low Spark. Dave Mason played an incredible solo on
Low Spark. Throughout the show his guitar playing was awesome. Jim Capaldi
was totally into his playing - drums, percussion and guitar. His drumming on
Dear Mr. Fantasy was great. They both did a wonderful job of giving life again
to those familiar songs.

 After the show, Jim Capaldi chatted with fans and signed autographs. Dave
Mason must have headed back to the bus, he was all sweaty. I encourage
anyone who can to go check out their show. You'll enjoy it!

Craig in Kansas City

From:             LesterJake@aol.com
Date sent:        Sat, 28 Feb 1998 10:21:41 -0500 (EST)

Well, I would think that if Winwood showed up and played with Mason and
Capaldi in NY (a concert I would dearly have loved to have been at) then it
seems to me he has "blessed" their project.  Plus, I thought Steve spent a fair
amount of money in 1994 buying the right to use the name Traffic from Chris
Blackwell, so I suppose they're billing themselves as Mason and Capaldi, but
playing the Dave Mason Traffic tunes.  This seems fair, too, since Steve would
not play certain Dave Mason tunes at the post-Mason Traffic concerts.

At any rate, if Mason and Capaldi are going to bad-mouth Mr. Winwood, is
there anything we can/should do about it?  We can show irritation, but so what?

As you can infer, I'm not getting too bent out of shape about this.


[As Les says, Steve spent a fair amount of money buying the rights to the
Traffic name; but Les is wrong in supposing that Mason and Capaldi are not
billing themselves as Traffic and in supposing that they are only playing Mason
songs. (Several people have reported here that they play "Low Spark" and
"Dear Mr Fantasy".) They are doing both, and without permission.  One of my
concerns through all this is not only are M&C attempting to make money by
misleading the public, which may or may not be unethical, but they have also
opened themselves up to a lawsuit, should it ever come to that.   --BG]

Date sent:        Tue, 24 Feb 1998 22:08:45 -0500
From:             Dawn 
Subject:          Let's All CALM DOWN

OK, OK, We are all getting a little too tense about this "feud", myself included.
Let's all sit back a moment and see what happens. Hopefully, the boys will have
worked this out by the time you are reading this post.

May I inject a moment of levity here? I think we desperately need some comic

Here follows a tongue-in-cheek Top Ten List, and I hope that you "get" the
little bits of Traffic trivia in it.  Remember, kids, this is just for fun, so don't get
your panties in a twist about any of it, 'kay?  Zzzzzzzippp! (Zipping up my
"Flame" retardant suit, just in case! ;-))

Top Ten Reasons Why The Traffic Squabble REALLY Started:

#10.	Six or seven too many pints of beer.  And then the raid on the hard-
liquor cabinet...

#9	Jim's new white sneakers are blinding everyone onstage. (They
thought that WAS Winwood at the keyboards!)

#8	Dave has begun hearing voices, particularly from one blind Alsatian
dog, which tells him what to do...

#7	Even in the "House for Everyone", no one wanted to take out the trash.

#6	Miraculously, everyone agrees on one point:  It all must somehow be
Chris Blackwell's fault!

#5	Someone must've said, "Capaldi" in the AOL chatroom (this is an
"in-joke", you know)  Now see what you've done, Larry!

#4	Glyn Johns' car insurance company is STILL after Jim for wrecking
his Rolls, so Jim's not REALLY touring, he's actually on-the-run!

#3	It all goes back to the secret pact Steve made with the Devil, in
exchange for Ray Charles' voice.

#2	Touring as "Fleetwood Mac Revisited" wasn't going NEARLY as well.

And the #1 reason that this feuding really started...

Too much damn apple yogurt!

aka Pollypossm@AOL

[Dawn - Do you want to explain what "apple yogurt" is, or shall I?  -

Date sent:        Wed, 25 Feb 1998 14:29:48 -0600
From:             Lester Jacobson 
Subject:          Steve in the Wall Street Journal

An unusual venue for Steve Winwood, today's Wall Street Journal, in a page
one story about EMI Recorded Music, which includes Steve's label, Virgin. The
story sets up EMI's rapid rise, thanks to the husband-and-wife executive
leadership team of Ken and Nancy Berry.  Then it goes on to say:

"But lately there has been tumult in the Berrys' musical kingdom. The Spice
Girls helped raise EMI's US market share from last to third out of six and
plumped Virgin's profits.  But recent releases from such stars as Steve
Winwood were disappointments.  The Stones, David Bowie and Janet Jackson
have undersold industry expectations, despite their multi-million dollar
advances and expensive promotions.  When nominations for tonight's Grammy
Awards were counted, the Spice Girls were ignored, which doesn't bode well
for the longevity of EMI's top-selling act."

From:             "BobbieG." 
Date sent:        Tue, 24 Feb 1998 16:41:52 -0700
Subject:          Web-site

This is a purely personal milestone for me, but on February 24,  not quite 9
months since first being written, the Smiling  Phases web-site registered its
10,000th visitor.

Cool ....