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VOLUME 134, sent June 3, 1998

Topics in this issue:
  1. Podiatrist Special
  2. May 24th Show, Seattle
  3. SW and VM
  4. Traffic--spare parts
  5. 5/30 Catalyst Mason/Capaldi Review & Traffic Tape
Offer
  6. bootlegs, mr. fantasy
  7. May stats, Congrats, SP Vacation

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1*1*1*1*1*1*1*1*1*1*1*1*1
Date: Fri, 22 May 1998 23:27:25 -0500
From: Dawn 
Subject: Podiatrist Special

Podiatrist Special

Have you ever noticed all the references to feet and shoes
in SW and Traffic songs?  The wackos in the chatroom kind
of "stumbled" onto this the other evening, and, pardon the
pun (and those to follow),  "ran" with it...

"Something's Got a Hold of My TOE".  Well, must be because
I've got a "Hole in My SHOE".  That's okay, "I know just
where my FEET should go, and that's enough for me."  When I
got there, "I must've weighed 100 tons, between my head and
TOES."  And I met a Pearly Queen, who had "some gypsies
blood flowing through her FEET."  She told everyone about
the "Low Spark of HIGH-HEELED Boys".  With all that going
on, how could you not "Put on Your Dancing SHOES"?

Why even stop there? How about "Can't Find My Left Shoe",
"Coloured Rainboots", "Vagabond Hammertoe", "Heaven is in
Your Mules", "Dear Dr. Scholl's"...?

Just thought that the sillier SPers would get a "kick" out
of this.  We really could "pump" this topic for more
examples, but I didn't think that you could "stand" any
more.   Have a great summer!

Peace,
Dawn



2*2*2*2*2*2*2*2*2*2*2*2*2
From: Ericrichd@aol.com
Date: Tue, 26 May 1998 01:40:23 EDT
Subject: May 24th Show, Seattle

Please let me know if Jim Capaldi, Dave Mason and Al
Stewart will return to Seattle.  Last night, I went to
review the show for the online music magazine, Cosmik
Debris (http://www.cosmik.com), but when I asked five
different
employees of the Ballard Firehouse, each gave me a
different story of why the show was cancelled at 7:00 PM.
One told me that the band was ill, the other said that no
one at the record company returned 40 phone calls and yet
another told me that "sure, Traffic's coming back, no
problem."  Thank you for your help.

Eric Steiner


PS: Saw Traffic at the Gorge in Central Washington in '94
and wanted to see "Rock and Roll Stew" again.


3*3*3*3*3*3*3*3*3*3*3*3*3
Date: Tue, 26 May 1998 15:23:05 -0600
From: SVK 
Subject: SW and VM

I'm listening to a Van Morrison tape right now.  I always
wanted him and Steve to work together  ever since I heard
they're friends.  We saw Van M. in a great concert a few
years ago in L.A. at the Universal Amphitheater. His band
was fronted by Georgie Fame, who played organ and piano.
They did a couple of great duets.  Guess what I was
fantasizing about???  Oh well, maybe someday.

--Shannon

*********************************************
The only function of economic forecasting
is to make astrology look respectable.
                             --John Kenneth Galbraith
*********************************************



4*4*4*4*4*4*4*4*4*4*4*4*4
From: RBERG51@aol.com
Date: Fri, 29 May 1998 09:18:30 EDT
Subject: Traffic--spare parts

I'm looking for Traffic Trades.

I've assembled a dat of spare parts so to speak some mono
mixes from Mr Fantasy, some upgraded BBC stuff from the
boots including a performance of BLIND MAN, and a few
tracks from their HYDE PARK show in 68 with an instrumental
version of PEARLY QUEEN!

Neil


5*5*5*5*5*5*5*5*5*5*5*5*5
Date: Sun, 31 May 1998 13:39:27 -0700 (PDT)
From: Charles Dirksen 
Subject: 5/30 Catalyst Mason/Capaldi Review & Traffic Tape
Offer

**DISCLAIMER**:  I've been lurking for a few months on the
Steve Winwood/Traffic Digest (thanks Bobbie!), and didn't
want to post anything until I had something substantive to
say.  **AVERT THINE EYES FROM THE SCREEN** if you are
planning to see Mason and Capaldi anytime soon and want to
be surprised (perhaps unpleasantly!).  There is a tape
offer towards the end of this post, though (not for last
night's
show, however; if someone was stealth taping they did a
good job of it!).  I've been a hard core Traffic fan since
the late 1970s, and have always respected Winwood's music,
even if some of his 1980's pop material makes me nauseous
and depressed.  I'm also definitely on the side of those
who argue that the promotion of Mason and Capaldi as
"Traffic" is grossly insulting to everyone who loves
***TRAFFIC***.
Anyway, I always tell it as I hears it, so here goes..
please email me privately if the following enrages you to
the point of flaming, and avoid littering the Digest with
flames.

Thanks very much to Jeff Tucker for the ride down to the
Catalyst and back up to San Francisco, and to the person
who recently posted a setlist and review of Mason and
Capaldi (the one which made the last digest;  I owe you a
free Traffic tape so please email me; your post brought
this lyric to my attention:

"The things that have been written are just the opinion of
one man's mind."  (from "You're Standing in My Light"(?)).

May 30, 1998  THE CATALYST, Santa Cruz, CA
*Dave Mason (lead acoustic GIBSON, I believe)
*and Jim Capaldi (acoustic guitar, misc. light percussion
incl. tambourine and bongos)
("formerly with Traffic")
*Alex [something] stood in on acoustic guitar and
occasional back-up vocals from "Love Will Keep Us Alive"
onward

World in Changes
40,000 Headmen
Love Will Keep Us Alive (Capaldi on lead vocals)
Famous Ventures'(?) Instrumental (w/ Al Stewart)
Famous Ventures'(?) Instrumental (w/ Al Stewart)
Let It Go, Let It Flow
Low Spark
You're Standing In My Light (?)(new song, on "Hell Freezes
Over"; Capaldi on lead vocals)
Seasons of Change (?)(new song I guess)
We Just Disagree
You've Got A Hold On Me (?)(new song)
Dear Mr. Fantasy
Feeling Alright

Only You Know and I Know (E)
Shouldn't Have Took More Than You Gave ->
Dear Prudence (for a measure or two, dedicated to John
Lennon) ->
Shouldn't Have took More Than You Gave (E)


If you've never been to Santa Cruz, it's a relatively
small, friendly beach town effectively but not literally in
the armpit of California. There's a bong full of young,
pierced & dyed punk kids, burned out Original Hippies,
aspiring, dosed wookie-hippie children, drunk vets, and
whacked out long gone freaky people littering the brightly
lit, relatively clean downtown streets.  Santa Cruz is more
like a sprawling beach suburb than a town, with more bike
shops than churches and more concrete than sand. It was a
gorgeous day yesterday, though, so spirits were high.  The
ticket holder's line outside the Catalyst stretched for a
block or so by 8pm (tickets said show at 9:30pm).

The Catalyst is a longer-than-wide club that holds
somewhere around 500 people, and is basically run by a
bunch of middle-aged assholes who were definitely on their
best behavior last night (why can't they treat ZERO FANS as
well as they did that handicapped woman who wanted a place
from which she could see the show last night?).  The show
didn't sell out, but the room was almost full.  If you face
the stage from about 100 feet back (the stage is almost 6'
off the floor), there are tables and chairs on the right
and left hand sides of the floor of the long room, and an
open, chair-free corridor down the middle. There's also
about 25x40 feet of open space front of stage. There are
long, narrow balconies on the left and right sides of the
room, too, with tables and chairs for your drinking
pleasure (even if you can't really see the stage from most
of those tables).  The Catalyst sounds fine, but I hope
someone tells Mason and Capaldi to play the faaaaaaaar more
pleasant Great American Music Hall when they come back next
year (Mason said long after last night's show that they
would be back "next year").  They should actually play two
shows at GAMH (one of the most beautiful venues for music
in the country).

Al Stewart opened the show at 9:45pm on acoustic guitar for
a 45 minute set, which of course concluded with "Year of
the Cat."  I'm astounded that Al's voice is still as
beautiful as it was A Long Time Ago.  His voice is still
basically a cross between Ian Anderson of Tull, Robyn
Hitchcock, and a cat, and he looks strikingly like a thin
Jon Lithgow (spelling) of the spectacularly embarrassing
"Third Rock from the Sun" sitcom.  He was very well-
received by the predominantly 40-something crowd.  He still
has "it," in case you were wondering: strong guitar skills
and a soothing, pleasant (if numbing after awhile) voice.
If you have ever enjoyed anything Al's done in the past,
you'll like his tasteful 45 minute set, and perhaps even
his sense of humor.  Just be sure not to kick over anyone's
beer if you choose to rush willy-nilly towards the front
center of the stage during "Year of the Cat" to wave your
drunk forty-something arms lovingly at Al's fifty-
something, handsome and lily white visage.

After a half-hour break (and after Alex "I also play
acoustic guitar in this band" [Last Name unknown] checked
mics), Dave Mason and Jim Capaldi arrived.  If you haven't
seen them in years, fear the worst. Jim played his heart
out last night (God bless him), but he honestlylooks like
he's HAD IT WITH LIVING and is entering The Final Chapter
screaming, kicking and carrying a much too heavy load.  You
haven't seen the son of Frankenstein until you've seen Jim
Capaldi. For the sake of his health I hope he chooses not
to tour anymore, even if it will be depressing for all of
us to see him (gasp) retire.  Dave Mason is twice the man
he once was, but has otherwise aged well, and if you're
around 30 years old, resembles your ultra-cool hippie
uncle. He might have a year or two of touring left in him,
even if he was
dripping sweat by the second tune of their hour and fifteen
minute set.

The famous Ventures instrumentals (at least I assume they
are Ventures -- and not Shadows -- guitar instrumentals)
were wonderful, if only competently performed (no jams
here, folks).  Al Stewart seemed to be enjoying himself on
stage with Jim and Dave (and Alex; let's not forget Alex),
but that was it for him after these Ventures covers, much
to the disappointment of many in the audience it seemed
(those
who came for a BAND and not an acoustic duet/trio,
perhaps).

40,000 Headmen and Low Spark were of course wonderful to
hear, even if these versions -- in spite of the
Mason/Capaldi acoustic arrangement -- aren't shit in light
of *any* Traffic versions.  It was fun to hear them played
*live* by these legendary performers, but I really couldn't
help but think how much better they'd have been with a real
BAND playing with Jim and Dave.  Close to the show's
beginning, Jim commented that they decided to do an
acoustic duet sort of thing because they felt that it
worked.  In my opinion, it does "work" for a $15 or so
ticket and for a serious Traffic fan, but the gig
nevertheless should have been honestly advertised as
acoustic.  I talked with a few people in the crowd, and it
seemed to me that most people expected an electric BAND --
not an acoustic duo. Mason's gorgeous Gibson really worked
well (rich, full tone), but it
is still likely that many folks' expectations were not met.

The "new" songs  were ok, except for "You've Got on Hold on
Me" (with Mason on lead vocals), which was patronizing and
cliche'd.  The song itself is magnificently repetitive,
with chords and lyrics repeated ad nauseum, and to make
matters worse, Capaldi led the crowd in a tribal chant
involving the word "loving" during this song -- as a
brilliantly white light illuminated the crowd's waving
arms.  It was too rock
star, too cheezy, too scary.  If I didn't know better, I
might have left at this point in the show.

Dear Mr. Fantasy was interesting, if it lasted only a few
measures (maybe 3 minutes?).  I never want to hear it sung
by Mason again.  Not because Mason has a bad voice (his
voice is actually doing fine after all these years, in my
opinion), but because Winwood has a great voice and does it
much, much better to my ears.  Even Brent Mydland of the
Grateful Dead did a more rousing, more passionate cover of
this tune than Dave did last night.  I still loved hearing
it, of course!  How could you not?  Who covers Dear Mr.
Fantasy anymore?  Who covers **any** Traffic tunes??  Why
is that?!

Feeling Alright, which closed the set, was definitely the
most interesting tune played last night, even if it was
dwarfed by every Traffic, Grand Funk, Cocker, etc. version
I'd heard before.  The version last night started out
sounding exactly, note for note, like a Grover Washington
Jr. tune, which I believe is called something like
"Funkfoot."  Alex played this "Funkfoot" melody line for
the whole version, while Jim smacked some bongos and Dave
forcefully and funkily fingered his Gibson.  I love this
song and enjoyed this version, especially given the unusual
Grover Washington Jr. underlying funk theme, but if you see
Mason and Capaldi expecting to hear this song -- or
anything else -- "jam," you are going to be disappointed.

The encores were wonderful (though brief).  And the
dedication to John Lennon in the form of a smooth segue
into and a measure or two of "Dear Prudence" -- out
Shouldn't Have Took More Than You Gave (a song I love) --
was moving, if a wee bit platitudinous.  Particularly when
you already know the setlist, it is difficult to look on
the stage (at
least once) without sneering at the obvious lack of
improvisation. Did Jim tell that same joke at all the other
venues, too (Traffic/Tragic mispronunciation)?  Did Dave
say those same words at every other venue before song X?
Was the Low Spark we just heard basically performed almost
note for note the same as it has been at every show this
tour, as I suspect?

In my opinion, improvisation is what distiniguishes
brilliant, truly original musicians apart from merely
competent musicians (however famous or legendary they might
be).  Al Stewart seemed to impress more in the audience
with his good guitar skills than Dave Mason (at least last
night.. maybe Dave wasn't well?).  If you're impressed by
Dave Mason on guitar (acoustic or electric, for that
matter), you need to hear more guitarists, in my opinion.
A hell of a lot more.  From what I heard last night, Jerry
Garcia's half-finger could have admirably challenged
Mason's full ten.  Do yourself a favor and buy yourself
some Tony Rice, or at least some Grant Green, Robert Fripp,
Steve Howe, Steve Kimock, etc.

None of this is to say that I didn't have a good time last
night.  I think every Traffic fan should support Mason and
Capaldi and see them play together again.  I enjoyed
hearing traditional Traffic tunes, even if the versions
performed were musically dwarfed by all Trafficversions
I've heard (which admittedly isn't that many!). I'll see
Capaldi and Mason again if they return to the Bay Area, for
sure.

So go see Mason and Capaldi if you consider yourself a
Traffic fan! You'll enjoy yourself if you know what to
expect, I assure you. Definitely do not go if you are a
Winwood-head and enjoy Winwood's 1980's pop music (you will
almost undoubtedly be disappointed -- unless, of course,
you like Al Stewart..).

That's my two cents, folks.  If you wanted Traffic fan boy
b.s., my apologies.

All that said, I promised myself that I'd make a Traffic
tape offer in the first post I made to the Steve
Winwood/Traffic Digest, so here goes.  Recently, people on
the ZERO mailing list helped me acquire a few *live*
Traffic tapes, and I would like to offer that material.
Quality ranges from extremely shitty and awful to OOOOUU
LAAA
LAAAAAAAA.  You'll have to guess, because I don't want to
make a zillion copies of only the high quality material
(well, ok, 1973 London is nice quality and good music, so
I'd recommend that for you sensitive types).  Please send a
pleasant, thoughtful email request for no more than 2 tapes
worth of material.  I'll accept around 40 people (you too,
Zero folks).  Thanks very much to Dominic Droz, Chic Taber,
Dave Curtis, crostalk@aol.com, and Rosanna... and I hope
I'm not forgetting someone!! :-(

Tape One (90):  7/27/68 Hyde Park on side A; 1972
Winterland on side B (with Bill Graham intro)

Tape Two (90):  1967-68 misc. outtakes and stuff.

Tape Three (90):  1973 London England

Tape Four (90): London 1970 on side A, and Stockholm 1967
on side B

Tape Five (90): 10/14/71 Boston Music Hall

Tape Six (90): 9/12/67 Stockholm on side A (this is not the
same material that is on Tape Four side B); 1970 BBC
broadcast on side B

Tape Seven (90):  6/30/70 Fillmore West

two cents
charlie "who's got his ticket to the June 4 Other Ones
show" dirksen


6*6*6*6*6*6*6*6*6*6*6*6*6
From: rpawlys@thestar.ca
date: Fri May 22 14:37:40 EDT 1998
subject: bootlegs, mr. fantasy

   Hi. I've been a Traffic fan for about 25 years. I've
been going through the archives one at a time (I'm at 101
now), and they've really rekindled my interest. For the
moment, I'd just like to squeeze a few questions in before
SP goes on hiatus for June.

   BOOTLEGS: I recently picked up my first-ever bootleg CD,
Traffic's A Group, A Dog, A Ghost, which is the Fillmore
West concert from July, 1970. I'm happy with it, although I
remember the BBC London broadcast from the same era as
being a better performance with better sound. (But that
could be memory playing tricks on me.)
   The high point for me is Winwood's absolutely demonic
organ solo at the end of ``Glad,'' and the electric piano
solo on ``Empty Pages'' isn't bad either. ``No Time To
Live'' sounds better live than I ever imagined it could,
but
unfortunately, it ends abruptly after about 4 minutes. I
could live without ``Dear Mr. Fantasy'': SW stops twice to
adjust his agonizingly out-of-tune guitar while Capaldi and
Wood soldier on. (He actually sings ``Do anything to take
us out of this TUNE.'') Bobbie's Tapes in Circulation page
mentions that ``Stranger to Himself'' is part of this
concert tape, but it's not on my copy. Am I missing
anything much?
   Now that my appetite has been whetted, I'm desperate for
the Paper Rain and Woodwind boots. Anyone have any tips on
where I might find them?

   MR.FANTASY: I've read that there's a CD of the U.S.
version of Mr. Fantasy (supposedly on Mobile Fidelity, but
the Mr. Fantasy I've seen on that label is the British
version). Does anyone know if it's available and where
from?
   Actually, I think Mr. Fantasy is long overdue for a
proper reissue. Why not gather together all 10 tracks on
the British release, the 3 extras on the U.S. version (not
counting ``We're A Fade..''), the vocal version of ``Giving
to You,'' plus any other oddities, like the mono version of
``Heaven is in Your Mind'' with its different guitar solo.
Dream on, I suppose. But if reissuers at, say, Columbia
Legacy can do such a first-rate job with the Byrds and
Santana, why not Traffic?

   Cheers,
   Roman Pawlyshyn


7*7*7*7*7*7*7*7*7*7*7*7*7
From: "BobbieG." 
Date: Mon, 1 Jun 1998 08:07:55 -0700
Subject: May stats, Congrats, SP Vacation

In the month of May, we welcomed 13 new Subscribers, and
said goodbye to 7, (and 1 changed addresses) so we have a
total of 354 members on this List. I sent 3 volumes,
totally 24 posts, at an average of 11.6 KB per volume.

I'm sure everyone joins me in wishing long-time Subscriber
Jeanie and her husband Richard our congratulations on 25
years of marriage on June 9. Way to go, guys, slap us 5!

I'm leaving for Mexico tomorrow (June 4), will be back for
one day next week before heading up to Colorado, and will
not be able to receive email during that time. Email posts,
or unsubscribes or changes of address, just like usual, but
don't expect the usual prompt reply, okay? ;-) We'll all
get started again in July, and I'll sent one or two volumes
to catch-up on all the posts!

Happy June,
Bobbie   (bobbieg@azstarnet.com)

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END OF SMILING PHASES, VOL 134