Traffic is dead, but the corpse is lively. Though Steve Winwood has split to find his own way, the rest of Traffic is carrying on with a new name, a returnee from Traffic past, and a new member. New name is "Mason, Capaldi, Wood & Frog," reflecting the new lineup: Dave Mason, bass and vocals; Jim Capaldi, drums and vocals; Chris Wood, reeds; and Mick Weaver, leader of the Wynder K. Frog band, on organ, in place of Winwood.
Traffic has broken up. The announcement, made in London this week, came at a time when Traffic had finally broken through in the United States.
The group's second album, entitled Traffic, made a spectacular one hundred position leap on the trade charts this week, moving over 125,00 copies in five days. It is expected to be the final album by the group. In addition, there are strong rumors that one Traffic member, Steve Winwood, is to record an album with ex-Cream guitarist Eric Clapton. Member of the trio were unavailable for comment on the split, which was confirmed by Traffic's manager, Chris Blackwell.
(2001 US CD Reissue Essay by Brian Hogg):
In January 1968 the original Traffic line-up: Stevie Winwood (vocals/guitar/organ), Dave Mason (vocals/guitar), Chris Wood (saxophone/flute) and Jim Capaldi (drums/vocals) had, by January 1968, been reduced to a trio by the departure of Mason. Undaunted, the band took to the road and in doing so discovered an extraordinary bond. Naturally the spotlight fell on Winwood who filled the sound with pedal bass lines, organ and soaring voice, but Capaldi's measured, rhythmic punch and Wood's intuitive woodwind breathed colour into the sound. (A flavour of Traffic as a trio is preserved on two live tracks issued on the 1969 album 'Last Exit').
Chris Wood's tenor sax and Steve Winwood's guitar fused so well together it was sometimes difficult to tell them apart. "You can all join in" followed and confirmed my opinion that it should be put out as a single. Here it would be a giant. It's slightly hillbilly flavor and easy pace have made it a firm favourite on the Continent and with British fans who have heard it.