Owing to Randall Jentzen’s Facebook page, I’ve been skipping down musical memory lane of late. Late last night Randall’s tour took me to Steve Winwood’s solo version of John Barleycorn Must Die, hauntingly beautiful as ever.
Compare that to Winwood’s onstage version as the linchpin of Traffic, harmonizing with Jim Capaldi, 40 years earlier.
In 1967, Steve Winwood left The Spencer Davis Group (Gimme Some Lovin’ and I’m A Man) to join the band Deep Feeling, anchored by Jim Capaldi and Dave Mason. Capaldi convinced the his mates to rename themselves Traffic. Though they made sweet music together, Traffic disbanded after a year when Mason went out on his own and Winwood joined Blind Faith with Eric Clapton and Ginger Baker. Thankfully Winwood re-formed the band in 1970, the year that John Barleycorn was born.
Dave Mason did okay on his own and, speaking of old guys who sound as good as ever, can still do a great rendition of Only You Know And I Know …