TRAFFIC's drummer Jim Capaldi is remembered and highlighted on the next "Rock 50" show, which is scheduled to air March 12 on WPMD (a college radio station at Cerritos College in California). Bill Ward, BLACK SABBATH drummer and host of the program, will play a special segment of Jim's work with TRAFFIC and two tracks from the 40,000 Headmen Tour of 1998. In the meantime, Ward has issued the following statement regarding Jim's passing:

"For those who don't know, Jim Capaldi, songwriter, drummer/percussionist and vocalist extraordinaire, died recently on January 28th at a London clinic from stomach cancer.

"Jim Capaldi, probably best known for his creative work with TRAFFIC, was for me, an inspiration. As a teenager, I would sit next to the stage at Birmingham's all nighters and study Jim's technique. At that time, Jim played with a Worcestershire-based band called DEEP FEELING, which also included Luther Grosvenor, later of SPOOKY TOOTH, and Chris Wood, later of TRAFFIC. Jim was a unique player, and back then at the all nighters he had a heart of many talents.

"I got to know Jim, and he gave me a most precious gift. A gift that as a teenage drummer, I probably needed more than anything else. The gift was validation. He validated my playing. At that time, this meant a lot to me. During the heady days of the all nighters, Dave Mason would visit, and in what seemed no time at all, TRAFFIC with Steve Winwood, was born. TRAFFIC's journey is rock history now.

"I've admired Jim's work over the years and up until today. Jim Capaldi was a giant in music. I believe he took musical risks that are so important to do. He knew how to play in a band, and that requires in part, listening techniques and selflessness. His rhythms were always cutting-edge, and his songwriting was powerful.

"I thank you, Jim, and pay my respects to you. I will never forget what you gave me and how much you've brought to music.

"On Saturday, March 12th, we'll play some songs Jim wrote and recorded as a tribute to the man, legendary and very important to rock's history.

"Thanks, Jim."

In other news, 2005 marks the 35th anniversary of the release of BLACK SABBATH's first two albums ("Black Sabbath" and "Paranoid"). To this, Bill wants to know what your favorite BLACK SABBATH song is. Please e-mail it to him at [email protected] The votes will be tallied and will be divulged in a future "Rock 50" show.


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