Sometimes there are tracks or bands that, if you are into music, you should know but for some reason have escaped you all these years. One day you hear one, innocently ask what it is and get a look of disbelief from everyone in the room (happens to me often). Additionally, sometimes there are tacks that if you play for people they go…oh yes, classic. Then you ask them who it’s by and they stare at you blankly, un-able to quite pin point why they know it but not the name of the band. I kind of put Feelin’ Alright by Traffic into this category (some people, I know, will think eh! But what can I say).
I pulled out an old mix cd this morning to play in the car and on this came, instantly making me into a laid back driver come hand clapper. To be honest I don’t know a great deal about them or the rest of their stuff…I just love this track. For those who don’t know, Traffic were around in the late 60’s and had in their ranks Steve Winwood who had left The Spencer Davis Group (which he joined when he was 15) and who I think has one of the best voices – it’s hard to argue with ‘I’m a man’ – although he isn’t lead vocals on this. The track was written and sung by David Mason but the backing singing by Winwood really lifts it. Their stuff had country rock, jazz, blues and psychedelic touches depending on which album and track you listen to. The jazz elements are really prevalent on this track through the base, piano saxophone and percussion. It’s such a lovely track with what I think are great lyrics too….But when I had a bit of a look into their history and this track in particular, what I found amazing was the amount of people who had covered it, such as: Joe Cocker, Mongo Santamaría, Grand Funk Railroad, Three Dog Night, The 5th Dimension, Lou Rawls, Freddie King, Paul Weller, Lulu, Chairmen of the Board, Rare Earth, The Electric Concept Orchestra , Mother's Finest, The Ohio Players, Diana Ross with the Jackson 5, Maceo Parker, Gladys Knight & the Pips, Widespread Panic and The Black Crowes, with a special mention to the Maceo Parker version which is worth checking out on YouTube (god bless Wikipedia – I couldn’t have compiled that on my own). That is the way it used to be and considering the style of the track it isn’t odd that so many soul and funk acts have had a go at it, but I am still amazed, a few I knew, many I didn’t. It’s certainly a track no one should be without – well worth picking up.
Playlist: Tuesday 21st February 2012
As mentioned above I drove into work today. Just me, as my wife and son were at home today, so the music was on nice and loud. In my car I have stacks of cds I have compiled over time, some so knackered that they barely play. But it’s nice to pull one out and play it through as they often throw up tracks I have forgotten or weren’t expecting. This was the case with Traffic and it really put me in a good mood. I got through most of the cd before I hit work. The music took a crazy path from the laidback instrumental hip hop of Aeroc, past the Scandinavian folk rock of The Amazing, via the messed up hip hop of AWOL One & Daddy Kev to the beautiful closing tune of Emanuel & The Fear – The Rain Becomes The Cloud, a real beauty to end on and set me up for the day.
Playlist: Traffic – Feelin’ Alright, Aeroc – Daisy Chains, Adam Greene – What Makes Him Act So Bad, Akron/Family – Sun Will Shine, The Amazing – Deportation Day, Atlas Sound – Sheila, AWOL One & Daddy Kev – Suck My Brain, Bad Sports – And It Goes, CFCF – Sogni Rossi, Chapel Club – O Maybe I, Cold War Kids – Let Your Hair Down, Emanuel & The Fear – The Rain Becomes The Clouds.