Traffic Jam

Is that a pun on my old band? Who writes for this pathetic blog?

Is that a pun on my old band? Who writes for this pathetic blog?

Funday Monday has rolled around again, so it’s time once again to crack open the vault that houses The Nest’s unnecessarily large collection of almost forgotten music so we can scrape the mold off another lost gem to play from the Dusty Vinyl Archive!  DJ Scratchy and the Sponkie twins will be taking us back to perhaps my all-time favorite year in the history of records that rocked and rolled, 1983!  So whip out those leather pants and heavy eyeliner and enjoy today’s underground classic!

dusty vinyl

Several of the members of the short-lived, but very influential 60’s psychedelic rock band Traffic went on to experience solo success.  Steve Winwood had quite a career in the 80’s, and we just agree that Dave Mason earned himself a little one hit wonder love to make a name for himself.  However, the man who wrote most of the lyrics for the band had a much harder time establishing himself despite releasing almost a dozen solo albums.  Jim Capaldi couldn’t hit the US pop charts with a telephone pole until longtime collaborator Winwood showed him how much more awesome songs with synthesizers are than songs without synthesizers.

Play it one more time, and I'll claw your eyes out, Stevie.

Play it one more time, and I’ll claw your eyes out, Stevie.

His ninth album, 1983’s “Fierce Heart,” was heavily synth driven and also gave Capaldi his lone taste of heavy US airplay.  Billboard will tell you his lone Top 40 hit was “That’s Love,” a song which I have no recollection of.  But from that same album was a song that was a favorite of the rock station my parents listened to when I was an 8 year old aspiring shitty music connoisseur.  Almost a decade before Aerosmith sang about it, Capaldi was telling us what “Living on the Edge” was like…

The 80’s were the beginning of the end for what was a golden age of radio… a time when radio stations felt free to play almost anything without feeling chained to a strict genre format or a tight playlist.  MTV’s influence as a national pop music power and the rise of mega-corporate radio empires in the 90’s pretty much killed off the almost college-like music format that dominated my younger years.  One of the things that became a dinosaur along with that FM evolution was the phenomenon of the local/regional hit.  These were songs that got airplay like a Top 40 hit in a certain city or geographical area, but never broke through as a nationwide hit.  “Edge” (The 15th best song of 1983 per that station I listened to) is the first of many St. Louis area regional hits from the 70’s and 80’s I plan to use the DVA to give better exposure to… songs whose effects on the brain may explain our high ranking on this prestigious list:

Credit to Draliman for sending this to me, fearing for my safety.

Credit to Draliman for sending this to me, fearing for my safety.

We’ll do this again should I manage to live to see next Monday…

About evilsquirrel13

Bored former 30-something who has nothing better to do with his life than draw cartoon squirrels.
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24 Responses to Traffic Jam

  1. Ally Bean says:

    I remember “That’s Love” was played everywhere I went. At the time I thought the “You’ll never change the world” chorus was pessimistic. Now, I think it might be the most accurate lyric ever written. 😉

  2. fanrosa says:

    This is one of those songs that almost sounds familiar. So you keep listening waiting for the dime to drop, and it never does. but MTV was on 24/7 in my house BITD so I’m sure I heard it.

    Meanwhile….it’s pretty obvious why all those bad ass 70s bands broke up and/or faded into obscurity once videos hit. They were some pretty sketchy looking characters who were previously relegated to midnight and later. It’s funny now to think that we never know what so many bands looked like until they were on Midnight Special or Don Kirschner’s.

    This dude sort of looks like what might have happened if Lemmy had hooked up with Paul Benedict…..

  3. I liked his version of Love Hurts very much. I had no clue that he died in 2005 …think I’m getting old there is so much good muzak I can’t remember :o( I’m glad Marseille isn’t on that list… but nevertheless this is not the place for my next holiday :o)

  4. I kept thinking I’d heard that song before but STILL not sure and I listened twice……maybe just a familiar tune…….ANYWAY, I was surprised Washington, DC wasn’t on that most dangerous cities list and may I say now (considering where you are and where your city ranks in the standings) that it’s been nice to know you. 🙂


  5. Even I have heard of Stevie Winwood. You finally featured someone whose name I recognize, even if I can’t quite place the sound of his music. I embarrass myself by my ignorance.

    • Well, most of Steve Winwood’s most recognizable solo work was during the 80’s. Probably his most recognizable group song from the 60’s is “Gimme Some Lovin” where he sang lead for the Spencer Davis Group.

  6. Trisha says:

    Ah, the good old days when even synthesizers sounded like music and not just a collection of weird noises!

    • I don’t know if they even use real synthesizers anymore… it’s probably all computer generated weird sounds now (Though some of it sounds good). I can picture the Beatles and Rolling Stones sampling music and looping record now….

  7. 1jaded1 says:

    I don’t remember this…maybe it’s blocked. Please stay safe. Wow.

  8. Don’t worry most people are murdered by someone they know and love…..Come to Australia. All you have to fear here is killer snakes and other assorted poisonous critters. If you remember to always watch where you are stepping it is (almost) always alright! 😉

  9. goldfish says:

    There was a time when Detroit was the murder capital of the world. Now it doesn’t even crack the list of 50 most dangerous cities. Those were the days…

    • Don’t worry, Detroit checks in at #28 on that list. For most of the last decade, we annually traded spots with Detroit for the coveted “Most Dangerous City in America” title. Nothing like a little gallows humor bragging rights when your hometown’s the worst in the whole Free World, though…

  10. reocochran says:

    Fun times and questionable music. Hahaha! 😉

  11. draliman says:

    I’ve not heard of this chap or his song regardless that was apparently English. I feel a bit sorry for him that he did all those albums and never hit the Big Time, though he seems to have collaborated with some of the greats. I guess this song grew on me through listening, sort of background music.
    But the best thing it said on Wiki is that his first name was “Nicola”. Ha ha ha. I bet his school days were full of fun with a name like that.

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