RS-1-3050 Electric Nights
Produced by Jim Capaldi
(tracks 1,4,7 by Jimmy Miller)
Released on May 1979
no chart information
Find it at GEMM
RS-1-3050 cover
[high resolution photo]

S ometime around the mid Seventies occurred a great migration of psychedelic folkies from the fields and festivals into the dark, dank confines of the studio. There, without a window to judge east from west, these onetime icons made directionless rock music that pledged allegiance to the tastes of the time. Rock, funk, country, disco, ballads and social criticism, filigree and filler all got mixed into this melting pot of mediocrity. It gained momentum under the boogaloo aesthetic of the ex-Beatles and found its greatest expression in bands like The Eagles and Steely Dan. You could hear some of that creeping into Traffic’s music at the end, but Steve Winwood’s voice somehow elevated the end result. Jim Capaldi is no Winwood, not even a Don Henley. He’s not a flashy drummer, has an unremarkable voice, and writes the sort of pedestrian rock songs that other folks (Ringo, Roger Daltrey) pay to have written for them. High in the wood-panelled bungaloes of Nice or Los Angeles (or wherever the beautiful people go to be groped and gawked at), maybe “Wild Geese” or “1890” seemed like grand statements. An impressionable mind could hear these songs, Bob Dylan’s Street Legal still fresh in their mind, and mistake Jim Capaldi as a resolute, solitary songwriter. But there’s no heart in the performance, no soul left to lay claim to after piffle like “Shoe Shine” has passed your lips. I’d actually toyed with giving this a safety orange rating, toyed with suspending judgment, with going outside and playing in the snow, but there’s mostly fire in my belly this morning. Forget about Electric Nights. Forget about 1979. Go play in the snow instead. That’s where I’m headed.

RS-1-3050 back cover
RS-1-3050 back cover


  1. SHOE SHINE    (Jim Capaldi/Peter Bonas)    4:52
  2. HOTEL BLUES    (Jim Capaldi)    3:30
  3. WHITE JUNGLE LADY    (Jim Capaldi)    3:42
  4. TABITHA    (Jim Capaldi/R. Otu)    4:11
  5. TIME    (Jim Capaldi/Peter Bonas)    4:38
  6. ELECTRIC NIGHTS    (Jim Capaldi)    4:16
  7. WILD DOGS    (Jim Capaldi)    4:46
  8. 1890    (Jim Capaldi/Peter Bonas)    4:11
  9. WILD GEESE    (Jim Capaldi)    6:54


JIM CAPALDI -- vocals, drums, backing vocals, percussion, timabalis
RAY ALLEN -- saxophones, percussion, congas
PETER BONAS -- guitar
PHIL CAPALDI -- backing vocals, percussion
ROSKO GEE -- bass
CHRIS PARREN -- keyboards
Peter Cox -- backing vocals (7)
Simon Kirke -- drums
Trevor Morais -- drums
Alan Spenner -- bass
Super Bear Gang -- carnival crowd (8)
John Etchells -- engineer, mixing
Bloomfield/Travis -- sleeve design
Adrian Day -- illustration
Dick Polak -- photography

UK/GER/NOR May 1979 Polydor LP 2383 534  
US May 1979 RSO LP/CS/8T RS/CT/8T-1-3050 picture sleeve


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