Traffic – “John Barleycorn”


Traffic – John Barleycorn

This year alone, I’ve bought two new versions of Traffic’s “John Barleycorn” album!

LP            JOHN BARLEYCORN MUST DIE                                 ISLAND UK         ILPS 9116  LP

1970 6 TRKS UK original issue, gatefold cover

LP            JOHN BARLEYCORN MUST DIE                                 POLYDOR CAN  2334 013   LP

1970 6 TRKS cover variant, different typeface, paper

LP            JOHN BARLEYCORN MUST DIE                                 U.A. US              UAS 5504  LP

1970 6 TRKS US original issue, which came with a “Traffic” sticker on the cover

CDx2        JOHN BARLEYCORN MUST DIE (Deluxe edition)          ISLAND UK         533241-1   CDx2

2011 16 TRKS (10 x bonus tracks) (’70 original issue)

CD            JOHN BARLEYCORN MUST DIE (Kami)                       UNIVERSAL JPN                 UICY-9273 CD

1970 11 TRKS (’03 issue) kami sleeve (4 x bonus tracks) based upon the UK ’01 re-master

SA            JOHN BARLEYCORN MUST DIE (SHM-SA-CD Kami) NH                       UNIVERSAL JPN

UIGY 9049  SA

1970 6 TRKS (’10 issue) SA-CD non-hybrid, no bonus tracks here

LP            JOHN BARLEYCORN MUST DIE re-issue                     ISLAND UK         ILPS 9116  LP

1970 6 TRKS UK EMI re-issue, single sleeve


7″             EMPTY PAGES / STRANGER TO HIMSELF                U.A. US              UA 50692  7″

1970 2 TRKS no pic sleeve, promo

Oddly, I first owned this album as an 8-track tape!  Long gone, unfortunately.  I don’t remember ever having a factory-made cassette of it…got my first Island UK LP of it about ’73 or ’74 – it always had a nicer cover printing job than the US issue – imagine my surprise at finding a Canadian version with a cover variant!  Further variant?  When Island UK re-issued the LP, the cover was no longer a fold out.

The Japanese paper sleeve CD has some fairly interesting bonus tracks, too!

This year I’ve bought both a Deluxe Edition and a Japanese non-hybrid single layer SA-CD of “John Barleycorn”, with really excellent sound.

The Deluxe Edition has come to my collection most recently;  only some of the bonus tracks from the Japanese edition made it to the Deluxe Edition, so I guess I’ll have to keep my paper sleeve CD edition (yes, it’s different than the SA-CD version).

Most exciting about the Deluxe Edition:  they give you an entire unreleased live album – the rumored “Traffic Live – November 1970” album – not to be confused with “Welcome To The Canteen” – a completely different record!

And I do not know why, but the British never did a single from “John Barleycorn”, but we Americans did:  “Empty Pages” b/w “Stranger To Himself” – I certainly never heard that on the AM radio at the time!

So, thanks to Steve Winwood, Jim Capaldi and Chris Wood!  Great album, boys!

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One Response to Traffic – “John Barleycorn”

  1. Pingback: Recommended Cd Sleeve

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