Traffic's newly expanded lineup focused their live energies into the studio without Dave Mason but with more than a little blind faith. The trio of remaining original members Steve Winwood, Chris Wood, and Jim Capaldi were joined by Ric Grech on bass and violin, Jim Gordon on drums, Rebop Kwaku Baah on percussion. 'The Low Spark of High Heeled Boys' was produced by Winwood at Island Studios in London. It went gold, hitting number seven on the US album chart and went on to sell over a million copies.
Jim Capaldi and Steve Winwood co-wrote the disillusioned title track. According to Capaldi: "Pollard and I would sit around writing lyrics all day, talking about Bob Dylan and the Band, thinking up ridiculous plots for the movie. Before I left Morocco, Pollard wrote in my book 'The Low Spark of High Heeled Boys.' For me, it summed him up. He had this tremendous rebel attitude. He walked around in his cowboy boots, his leather jacket. At the time he was a heavy little dude. It seemed to sum up all the people of that generation who were just rebels. The 'Low Spark,' for me, was the spirit, high-spirited. You know, standing on a street corner. The low rider. The 'Low Spark' meaning that strong undercurrent at the street level."
"The percentage you're paying is too high-priced,
While you're living beyond all your means.
And the man in the suit has just bought a new car
From the profit he's made on your dreams
But today you just read that the man was shot dead
By a gun that didn't make any noise.
But it wasn't the bullet that laid him to rest,
Was the low spark of high-heeled boys."
'Light Up or Leave Me Alone'
"Sometimes I feel like I'm fading away
You're looking at me, I've got nothing to say
Don't make me angry with the games that you play
Either light up or leave me alone"
'The Low Spark of High Heeled Boys'
"Hidden Treasure" (Steve Winwood, Jim Capaldi) – 4:16
"The Low Spark of High-Heeled Boys" (Steve Winwood, Jim Capaldi) – 11:35
"Light Up or Leave Me Alone" (Jim Capaldi) – 4:55
"Rock & Roll Stew" (Ric Grech, Jim Gordon) – 4:29
"Many a Mile to Freedom" (Steve Winwood, Anna Capaldi) – 7:26
"Rainmaker" (Steve Winwood, Jim Capaldi) – 7:39