Sunday, April 29, 2007

Jim Capaldi

@ Jim Capaldi
At the turn of the century, Pasquale Capaldi left his native Italy and ventured into Scotland. Later, settling in Evesham, England, he planted a Capaldi tree that would spread its branches across the sea to the United States as far as Michigan and Pennsylvania.

They lived and breathed music and when Jim was born on August 2, 1944, music was already in his blood. At the vanguard of popular music now for three decades, Jim Capaldi has always been involved in music. He formed his first band at the age of fourteen and was soon recording for Pye records with the Hellions. Shortly thereafter, he was gathering rave reviews in a band called Deep Feeling which he shared with fellow Traffic founder Dave Mason & Family founding member Poli Palmer. The band played rock & blues and locally were in a league of their own.

In the mid 60’s, Jim became a regular face at the legendary Birmingham late nightclub "The Elbow Room". After following their shows, he would go and jam together with other Birmingham bands and it was here that the idea of Traffic was born.

Apart from the group's eleven album multi- platinum career fueled by Jim's writing partnership with Steve Winwood, Jim has enjoyed a solo career of note with eleven solo albums since the days of his first solo project, while still a member of Traffic. Love Hurts was a major hit worldwide in 1975. Jim has maintained his momentum with U.S. successes like "That's Love" from the Fierce Heart album with Atlantic Records in 1982, "Something So Strong" from the Some Come Running album in 1987 with Island Records and touring throughout this period in Europe leading his own band "The Contenders".

Jim was working on his twelfth solo album when Steve called to ask for his input on a forthcoming Winwood album which, in fact, was to become Traffic's return to the scene. Subsequent to the reformation of Traffic in 1993 and the release in 1994 of the album Far From Home", the band toured America for five months, headlining 75 shows to over 500,000 people. They appeared at Woodstock and played ten shows together with fellow rock legends "The Grateful Dead".

Jim has always been a gifted songwriter. A five time winner of either BMI or ASCAP awards, in respect of most played compositions in America, he has been sought after for many projects. His most recent was The Eagles return; having written their massive radio cut "Love Will Keep Us Alive".

In 1998, Jim and fellow Traffic co-founder Dave Mason toured the U.S. =>>>>>>>>>>>

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@ Wiki
Jim Capaldi (2 August 1944 – 28 January 2005) was an English musician and songwriter and a founding member of Traffic. He drummed with several famous singers and musicians, including Jimi Hendrix, Eric Clapton, and George Harrison.

Career Overview
Born Nicola James Capaldi on 2 August 1944 in Evesham, Worcestershire, England to musical Italian parents, Jim Capaldi's musical career lasted more than four decades. He co-founded Traffic in Birmingham with Steve Winwood and the band's psychedelic rock was influential in Britain and the United States. Capaldi and Winwood wrote many of Traffic's major hits and most of the tracks on the band's ten albums.

Early days
As a child Capaldi studied the piano and singing with his father, a music teacher, and by his teens he was playing drums with his friends. In 1961 Capaldi played drums for the Worcester band The Sapphires and in 1963 he formed The Hellions with Dave Mason on guitar and Gordon Jackson on rhythm guitar. In August 1964 Tanya Day took The Hellions to the Star-Club in Hamburg, Germany as her backing group. The Spencer Davis Group were staying at the same hotel as The Hellions and it was there that Steve Winwood befriended Capaldi and Mason.

Back in Worcester, The Hellions established themselves as busy professionals of sufficient repute to provide backing to visiting performers including Adam Faith and Dave Berry. By the end of 1964, they had a London residency at the Whisky-A-Go-Go Club. In 1965 the band released three singles but none charted and later that year John "Poli" Palmer joined the band on drums and Capaldi became the lead vocalist.

The Hellions moved back to Worcester in 1966 in an attempt to reduce their costs but local tastes had changed and the band relaunched themselves as The Revolution with a fourth single that also failed to chart. Disillusioned, Dave Mason left the band. Capaldi replaced Mason with Luther Grosvenor and renamed the band Deep Feeling. They played gigs in Birmingham and the surrounding Black Country area where they developed a significant fanbase. Capaldi, Jackson and Palmer wrote original songs for the band that were heavier than the Hellions repertoire. Although they recorded several studio tracks only "Pretty Colours" (Capaldi/Jackson/Palmer) has been released.

First success
Capaldi and the band played frequently in London and Jimi Hendrix played guitar with them at the Knuckles Club as an unknown musician in his first UK performance. Back in Birmingham Capaldi would occasionally join his friends Mason, Winwood and Chris Wood for impromptu performances at The Elbow Room club on Aston High Street. Early in 1967 they formalised this arrangement by forming Traffic and the other members of Deep Feeling disbanded. In 1968, Capaldi, Winwood and Mason contributed backing music to a solo album by Gordon Jackson.

The new band was signed by Island Records and rented a quiet cottage in Aston Tirrold, Berkshire in order to write and rehearse new material. The cottage did not remain quiet and had frequent visitors including Eric Burdon, Eric Clapton and Pete Townshend as well as Trevor Burton (of The Move) amongst many others. Capaldi wrote the lyrics for Traffic's first single "Paper Sun", which appeared in the UK singles chart at number 5 in the summer of 1967. Two more singles were released successfully in 1967 and in December the band released the album Mr. Fantasy, which demonstrated the individual talents of each member. Mason left the band soon after the album's release, but returned the following May before finally leaving again in October. Winwood also left Traffic (to form Blind Faith) and the rest reluctantly concluded that the band was over.

Reformation and beyond
Capaldi now tried to form another band with Mason and Wood but the creative tensions that had caused Mason to leave Traffic remained, and Wynder K. Frogg only lasted until March 1969. In January 1970 Capaldi and Wood joined Winwood in the studio to record Winwood's solo album. These sessions were so successful that the three of them reformed Traffic (without Mason) to release the album John Barleycorn Must Die. They then toured the UK and the U.S. with a band extended by several session musicians.

Although the next Traffic albums were successful, Capaldi began to develop his solo career and released his first solo album Oh How We Danced in 1972. This set featured contributions from Free guitarist Paul Kossoff, Barry Beckett and Rebop Kwaku Baah as well as several members of Traffic.

He followed this up with Whale Meat Again in 1974 before releasing what many consider to be his masterpiece, Short Cut Draw Blood, the following year. Full of tracks with lyrical bite, the album tackled issues such as the environment, government corruption and drugs.

In October 1975 a single taken from the album, a cover version of The Everly Brothers' "Love Hurts", reached number five in the UK chart, and charted worldwide.

Capaldi's first and only solo Top 40 hit in the United States was from his 1983 album Fierce Heart, yielding the hit single "That's Love", which climbed to Number 10 in Billboard's Top 40 in the summer of that year. The track was a simple arrangement with synthesized drums, electric guitar, and keyboards.

Capaldi was noted for the extent of his collaborations with other musicians. In 1973, he played drums at Eric Clapton's Rainbow Concert and on some Clapton studio sessions.

Jim Capaldi's success as a lyricist continued throughout his life. He was a five times winner of coveted BMI/Ascap Awards for the "most played compositions in America", and sales of songs written or co-written by him exceeded 25 million units. He numbered Bob Marley among his friends and they travelled together whilst Marley was writing the Catch A Fire album. Capaldi wrote the lyrics to "This Is Reggae Music".

Jim Capaldi married Brazilian born Aninha in 1975 and in 1976 he toured with his band Space Cadets before moving to Brazil in 1977. His daughters Tabitha and Tallulah were born in 1977 and 1979, respectively. The Capaldis lived in the Bahia region of Brazil until the beginning of 1980 and while there he became heavily involved with environmental issues. The track "Favella Music" on his 1981 album Let The Thunder Cry arose from his love of Brazil, and he worked with several Brazilian composers.

In the 1980s, Capaldi collaborated with Carlos Santana contributing songs and ideas to Santana's projects and in the 1990s he wrote the song "Love Will Keep Us Alive" for the Eagles' successful Hell Freezes Over album. His own 1988 album Some Come Running included Eric Clapton and George Harrison on the track "Oh Lord, Why Lord".

In 1993, Traffic reformed (without the late Chris Wood) and recorded a new album Far From Home and in 1994 Capaldi toured the U.S. and UK with the band. In 1998 he paired up again with Mason on an extensive American tour.

The final years
In 2001, Capaldi's twelfth solo album Living On The Outside featured George Harrison, Steve Winwood, Paul Weller, Gary Moore and Ian Paice. George Harrison played guitar on the track "Anna Julia", which is an English translation of a song by the Brazilian band Los Hermanos, and Capaldi played at the Concert for George in 2002.

Outside his music and his environmental activism, Capaldi also assisted his wife in her work with Jubilee Action to help Brazilian street children. He remained professionally active until his final illness prevented him from working on plans for a 2005 reunion tour of Traffic. He died of stomach cancer at 02:30 on 28 January 2005. He was 60 years of age. He is survived by his wife and two daughters.

Dear Mr Fantasy
Dear Mr Fantasy was a celebration of Jim Capaldi's life and music that took place at the Roundhouse in Camden Town, London on Sunday 21st January 2007. Guests included Steve Winwood, Cat Stevens, Paul Weller, Pete Townshend, and many more. Dear Mr Fantasy featured the music of Jim Capaldi and Traffic, and all profits went to The Jubilee Action Street Children Appeal.

Solo discography
* Oh How We Danced (1972)
* Whale Meat Again (1974)
* Short Cut Draw Blood (1975)
* Play It By Ear (1977)
* Daughter of the Night (1978)
* Contender (1978)
* Electric Nights (1979)
* Sweet Smell of ... Success (1980)
* Let The Thunder Cry (1981)
* Fierce Heart (1983)
* One Man Mission (1984)
* Some Came Running (1988)
* Prince of Darkness (1995)
* Let The Thunder Cry (1999)
* Living On The Outside (2001)
* Poor Boy Blue (2004) =>>>>>>>>>>>

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Drummer with rock group Traffic who also enjoyed solo success

Richard Williams @ The Guardian
Saturday January 29, 2005

With his handsome boxer's face and a singing voice of bruised soulfulness, Jim Capaldi might have achieved the degree of fame that fell upon his friend Steve Winwood. Instead, Capaldi, who has died of cancer aged 60, will remain best known as the drummer with Traffic, the group he and Winwood formed in 1967 with two other West Midlands musicians, the guitarist and songwriter Dave Mason and the saxophonist and flautist Chris Wood.

Traffic, who were inducted into the US Rock and Roll Hall of Fame last year, pioneered the concept of "getting it together in the country". Their earliest performances took place at a gamekeeper's cottage in Berkshire, outside which they set up their instruments. In the absence of mains electricity, the musicians ran their amplifiers off a portable generator and rehearsed the songs for their debut album, titled Mr Fantasy, to an audience of rooks, rabbits and field mice. "Camping out, cooking over an open fire, it was like William and the Outlaws," Winwood remembered.

Born in Evesham, Capaldi came from a family of musicians. His paternal grandfather, Pasquale, had settled in Worcestershire after arriving from Italy. Pasquale was an accordion player, as was his son Nicola (Nick), who performed on stage and on the radio with his wife. Their son Jim started his career in local groups at the age of 14 and it was while playing at the Elbow Room, a Birmingham club, that he met and jammed with Winwood, who was on the brink of leaving the Spencer Davis Group.

Capaldi and Winwood co-wrote many of Traffic's best-known songs, including their first single, Paper Sun (1967), which captured the optimism of the first summer of love and reached No 4 in the UK chart. Tensions within the group were already apparent, however, and Capaldi later dismissed their second single, Hole In My Shoe, a winsome fantasia composed by Mason, as "pop bubblegum".

A third hit, the theme song to the film Here We Go Round the Mulberry Bush, preceded Mason's departure at the end of the year. Traffic continued to perform as a trio, making their US debut at Bill Graham's Fillmore East, but in the first weeks of 1969, shortly after the release of their second album, the group broke up amid the news of Winwood's announcement that he would be joining Eric Clapton in a "supergroup" to be known as Blind Faith. Plans for Capaldi to join them were scuppered by Clapton's management, which installed Ginger Baker in the drummer's chair.

Blind Faith lasted less than a year, and in 1970 Traffic returned to action with an album titled John Barleycorn Must Die. Well received by their old fans, it was followed by The Low Spark Of High Heeled Boys, Shoot Out At The Fantasy Factory and When The Eagle Flies before they broke up again in 1974.

Capaldi's first solo album, Oh How We Danced, appeared in 1972, but a widely admired song titled Eve mystifyingly failed to give him a hit single. When he did enter the charts under his own name, it was with an imaginative version of an old Everly Brothers song, Love Hurts, which reached No 4 in 1975. Several more solo albums followed, plus one more under Traffic's name when he and Winwood got together (Wood had died in 1983) for a reunion tour in 1994.

In 1975 Capaldi met Aninha, a Brazilian student. They married later that year, establishing homes in Marlowe, Buckinghamshire and Ipanema. She and their two daughters, Tabitha and Tallulah, survive him.

· Nicola James Capaldi, musician, born August 2 1944; died January 28 2005 =>>>>>>>>>>>
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Jim Capaldi, ex-drummer of Traffic and friend of the LSS dies aged 60

@ London School of Samba
It has recently been announced that the world famous drummer Jim Capaldi has died. Born in 1944 in Evesham, UK, he was best known as the drummer for the legendary Traffic - the band he formed with Steve Winwood in 1967, who had hit singles such Paper Sun and Hole In My Shoe (1967). One of his obituaries in The Independent said that he considered Brazil his second home - he met his Brazilian wife Aninha Campos (Anna) in 1975, and they married later that year, and had two children, Tabitha and Tallulah. The obituary also said that the couple "campaigned on behalf of various charities there", including the São Martinho children's project in Rio de Janeiro.

Recently, Anna accompanied Tony and Cherie Blair on a fact-finding mission of Rio. Anna was also our Porta Bandeira at our parade in the Notting Hill Carnival in 1995 - and Di Foden remembers her well:

Jim Capaldi was something of a background figure for me - a large and silent man with a face that bore the marks of a thousand gigs. I remember thinking that he looked exactly how an old rock star should. I mainly dealt with his lovely wife Anna, who turned up one year at Carnival in 1995 with a small entourage, a large dog, and an Emmanuel dress (the designers responsible for the Princess of Wales' wedding dress, so a not inconsiderable piece of gear), and pronounced she would be our Porta Bandeira.

In inimitable Brazilian fashion she settled in for the weekend, sewed and chatted. The entourage and the dog did their best to look as if they understood. I remember particularly, late on the Sunday night when Anna had left, a gang of awestruck women standing drooling round the dress, stunned to silence by the loveliness of it.

I will never forget her dancing down Ladbroke Grove in this stunning dress. What a lovely woman. She was standing outside the gate last year to see us off on our 20th Anniversary parade in 2004.

My sympathy and love to her and her family.

I think it's likely that Jim came across samba at an early stage of his career. After the military seized power in Brazil in 1965, it soon cracked down on anyone who opposed the regime. Musicians such as Gilberto Gil and Caetano Veloso were no exception and they were sent into exile - ending up in London in 1969. According to one biography l read, they spent three weeks in London hanging around with Jim and others such as Alan Watts and Yoko Ono. I guess it was through Jim's friendship with Gil and Veloso that he first became interested in Brazilian music - either way by the mid-seventies he was in Brazil and it was there that he met his wife Anna.

l remember the first time l met Capaldi was at an LSS gig we did at a smart hotel in London sometime around 1994. The batería was playing on stage led by Adrian Bond when l noticed a guy with a snare drum suddenly come up from the audience in the middle of the set and join the front row of the batería. A few of us looked at Adrian and then looked at this guy, not knowing who he was - although l looked at him and recognised him from somewhere but could not remember where. At the end of the set, we all paraded off stage to the area backstage, and when we stopped playing, l went up to him and shook his hand saying ãI don't know who you are - but l recognise you!". He just laughed and later, when he left the dressing room, someone came up to me and said "that's Jim Capaldi from Traffic!".

The next time l saw him at an LSS gig was when in 1996 we did a special show at the Union Chapel in Islington which we recorded and intended to release as a live tape. I was on the door at one point and was amazed when suddenly he appeared and came in. He was very friendly and l was hoping that he would join us again on stage - but he spent the night watching us play and l never got the chance to talk to him again - although he also came down to join the party at our Barracão in Notting Hill after one of our Carnivals around this time.

It was around 1994 that the LSS first got involved with supporting the São Martinho children's project in Rio de Janeiro and as far as l remember, we helped fund the cost of teachers and the purchase of instruments to set up a children's batería for the project. The involvement of the LSS continued until around 2001, and during that time not only did we do several benefit gigs to support São Martinho, but many visits were also made by LSS members to its headquarters right beside the famous old tram viaduct at Lapa in Rio.

Jim was also involved and when some LSS members went over in 2000 to join the children's batería for the parade of the São Martinho carnival he was there helping out during rehearsals. I found several pictures in our archive showing Jim playing with the batería of the São Martinho project in 2000.

We will always remember him as someone who was a good friend of the LSS, and a great supporter of the São Martinho project in Rio.

Mestre Mags
January 2005 =>>>>>>>>>>>

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