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4.5 out of 5 stars
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4.5 out of 5 stars
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After Steve Winwood left the Spencer Davis Group, he formed Traffic, a group that recorded several fine albums between 1967 and 1975 There was a brief disbandment, during which period Steve joined Blind Faith. The original Traffic albums generally sound more cohesive than any compilations, but everybody has to begin somewhere. A compilation allows you to identify which of the original albums is likely to appeal most to you.
Traffic had three top ten hits and one minor hit in the UK although they made little impact on the American singles charts. Their music is somewhat different from the Spencer Davis Group, which was a British R+B band. While R+B is one of the ingredients of Traffic's music, there is also some rock, jazz, psychedelia and traditional folk in the mix.
As far as the UK hits are concerned, Paper sun made the top five, Hole in my shoe made number two, Here we go round the mulberry bush (from the similarly-titled movie) made the top ten and their chart history ends with the minor hit, No face no name no number. Of these songs, a cover of Hole in my shoe (recorded for charity) made number two in the eighties, thus matching Traffic's original achievement.
Those hits are all here, together with some interesting album tracks, among them the title tracks to three of their albums (Dear Mr Fantasy, John Barleycorn must die, Low spark of high-heeled boys).
Buy this to get a feel for what Traffic is all about, but if you really enjoy at least some of the tracks, identify the albums which your favorite tracks originally appeared, then buy them. Their original albums were Mr Fantasy (1967), Traffic (1968), Last exit (1969 - recorded just before their temporary disbandment and it shows), John Barleycorn must die (1970), Welcome to the canteen (1971), Low spark of high-heeled boys (1971), Shoot out at the fantasy factory (1972), On the road (1973) and When the eagle flies (1974).
This compilation serves as a great introduction to Traffic's music but can't do them full justice. Only the original albums (except Last exit) can do that.
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on 13 June 2004
I sneaked this one out of my dads collection while secretly indulging in a session of musical psychadelia, which I always mocked him for listening to over the years... Snigger. Anyway I am only just discovering the immense talent that these groups really did have back in the 60's and I found this album to be absolutely amazing! Good music like this does not really exist anymore and these grooves pricked up my ears. The minute it graced my speakers I knew I loved this band. I have never heard any of the other albums that make up this compilation but I would definately recommend this disc to anyone with an interest in good old fashioned, well orchestrated rock. Sweet discovery, will have to raid some more of this stuff when my old pa aint around hehe
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on 12 March 2012
Although there are better sounding Stereo-Mixes from original-label Island/Universal (Paper Sun, Hole in my shoe) you`ll find only Mono-Mixes on this CD. If you prefer better sounding songs you should buy original-Island/Universal-CD Traffic/Gold (originals digital remastered).
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on 22 August 2014
Decent 17 track compilation which covers the period of the band's existence from 1967 to 1974 and includes the likes of 'Coloured Rain', 'Dear Mr. Fantasy', 'Freedom Rider' and the lovely acoustic song 'John Barleycorn (Must Die)'. Good introduction to one of Britain's most interesting British bands; hopefully, the listener will be attracted to the superb back catalogue from the band as a result including their first 3 albums 'Mr. Fantasy', 'Traffic' and 'John Barleycorn Must Die'.
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on 20 July 2001
After the top 20 successes of 'Keep on Running' and 'Gimme some loving' many people often over look Winwoods later works. Some fine tracks here, much more musically complex than the normal formulaic pop hits of the time. Lay back, light up and enjoy. '40,000 headmen wouldn't make me change my mind.' (Track 14)
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on 27 February 2013
There are four tracks that are really good - Hole in My Shoe, Paper Sun, Here we go Round the Mulberry Bush and Low Spark of High Heeled Boys. For me, the rest are just so-so - but music is an individual taste. I remember the first 3 from decades past - I enjoyed them then and they are still good! The last one (Low Spark) I hadn't heard before. It sounds a bit like Neil Young with jazz thrown in and goes on a long time. Apparantly it sold well in the USA at the time and after a couple of plays I can see why. I would have given the CD a better star rating if I had enjoyed more of the tracks but I didn't and afterall this is supposed to be the best of Traffic.
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on 6 September 2013
Just as i remember it from all those years way back when just like really nice lovely days and beautiful songs from an era of "Love and Peace to all" except from the war in vietnam never should have gone there
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on 10 September 2011
It is a nice cd. But I could see that I better had bought John Barleycorn and Mr. Fantasy. These 2 albums are outstanding.
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This is an excellent compilation of The group Traffic that originated in the West Midlands. The group formed in 1967 as a psychedelic rock group notched up an impressive set of hits and recordings.
The group did develope and progress through changing group members and styles from 1970 onwards.

This CD only covers some key tracks from that late sixties psychedelic era with tracks like The brilliant Hole in my shoe, Here we go round the Mulberry Bush, Am I what I was or am I what I am?, Dear Mr Fantasy, You can all join in, No face no number, coloured rain and paper sun from the earlier period before 1970/ The CD also includes two excellent tracks from 1970 rock and roll stew and the brilliant rock version of the traditional folk song John Barleycorn (must die)

This CD doesn't go any further than the beginning of the seventies but it does offer a great introduction by focusing on some of their biggest hits.
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on 21 July 2010
i am quite pleased with this product considering the price i paid for this item,the song titles i were looking for are all on this collection and that makes it all the more a bargain,the tracks im not keen on i just skip,the 8 tracks i wanted are worth the price i paid for this,anyone with a serious interest in late 60s rock wont go wrong purchasing this collection.
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