Jim Capaldi


So sad to hear of the passing of Jim Capaldi, legendary drummer and co-founder of Traffic. Deepest condolences to his family and friends.

Traffic were at the forefront of the English “Flower Power” movement (nothing could be more evocative of the era than their wonderful psychedelic hit single “Hole In My Shoe”). But behind this was a group of very talented musicans whose live performances (I was lucky enough to see a couple of them) were a unique and very innovative melding of the new Rock, or “Rhythm and Blues” (as it was then called) and Jazz, and poetic vision. Capaldi and fellow members Dave Mason, Steve Winwood and Chris Wood were able to wander deep into improvisation in their shows, an inspiration to many who followed. Steve Winwood was already famous for his superb vocals in the Spencer Davis Group, but he became a legend in Traffic, and he and Jim Capaldi were the joint creators of many of Traffic’s great songs. Immortal stuff.

Capaldi remained a fiercely independent and colourful spirit in music all through his life. Only in later years did I meet Jim, with his lovely wife Aninha, doing great work to alleviate the terrible plight of dispossessed children in Brazil, and encouraging us all to help.

RIP Jim Capaldi