Traffic and Weather

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Traffic and Weather
Studio album by
ReleasedApril 3, 2007
GenrePower pop[1]
ProducerAdam Schlesinger
Fountains of Wayne chronology
Out-of-State Plates
Traffic and Weather
Sky Full of Holes

Traffic and Weather is the fourth studio album by the American rock band Fountains of Wayne. It was released on Virgin Records in April 2007.


While previous Fountains of Wayne albums saw lead singer Chris Collingwood and bassist Adam Schlesinger write songs separately then arrange them with the rest of the band, initial work on their fourth album saw them trying a new approach in which they wanted to get guitarist Jody Porter and drummer Brian Young more involved by jamming together at Bearsville Studios in Woodstock, New York. While it yielded many ideas, it didn't result in any finished songs.[2] In the end, "Strapped for Cash" was the only song developed from the Bearsville sessions, as the band reverted to their usual methods.[3] However, Collingwood was suffering from depression and alcoholism during the making of the album. As a result, he only penned three songs for it — "Fire in the Canyon", "Hotel Majestic" and "Seatbacks and Traytables" — while Schlesinger wrote the rest.[4] (In a Lennon/McCartney-like arrangement, the writing of each individual song is still credited to both Collingwood and Schlesinger, even though both in fact write separately. However, for this album, the publishing credits tell the story — all songs are published by Schlesinger's company Vaguely Familiar Music, except for Collingwood's contributions, which are published by Collingwood's company Monkey Demon Music.)

According to an interview with New York all-news radio station WCBS, the band claimed the title of the album, which was mixed by Michael Brauer and John Holbrook, was inspired by the station's slogan promising "traffic and weather together on the eights".


Describing their process for the album, Schlesinger said, "We'll bring a song in, then Brian will come up with a feel for it, cut a basic track, then we'll spend a lot of time with Jody experimenting with different guitar parts. On this album more than any, you can really hear Jody's playing and the incredibly wide range that he's capable of."[5]

The song "Someone to Love" includes backing vocals from former Smashing Pumpkins and Hole bassist Melissa Auf der Maur,[6] "Fire in the Canyon" contains backing vocals from the Candy Butchers' Mike Viola, "Seatbacks and Traytables" features former Smashing Pumpkins guitarist James Iha, and "Strapped for Cash" features trumpeters Ronnie Buttacavoli and Scott Wendholt; the former trumpeter also plays on "Yolanda Hayes".


Professional ratings
Aggregate scores
Review scores
Alternative Addiction[9]
The Austin Chronicle[10]
American Songwriter[11]
Entertainment WeeklyB+[12]
MSN Music (Consumer Guide)A[13]
Rolling Stone[16]
Stylus MagazineD−[17]

The album was met with moderate commercial success and generally favorable reviews. It reached #97 on the Billboard 200 albums chart,[18] and the song "I-95" was named #54 in Rolling Stone's's list of the 100 Best Songs of 2007.[19] Blender described the album as having "more witty tales of confused young people caught between destinations".[20]

The song "Traffic & Weather" was used on KYW-TV/WPSG in Philadelphia during its morning traffic and weather segments. Likewise, several of WCBS's sister all-news stations used the song in promotions tongue-in-cheek to promote their own 'traffic and weather together' efforts.

Track listing[edit]

All tracks are written by Chris Collingwood and Adam Schlesinger

1."Someone to Love"3:53
2."'92 Subaru"3:13
3."Yolanda Hayes"4:01
4."Traffic and Weather"3:37
5."Fire in the Canyon"2:47
6."This Better Be Good"3:04
7."Revolving Dora"2:42
8."Michael and Heather at the Baggage Claim"3:42
9."Strapped for Cash"3:31
11."Hotel Majestic"3:28
12."Planet of Weed"2:46
13."New Routine"4:14
14."Seatbacks and Traytables"3:31
15."Sense Into You" (Japan bonus track)3:30
16."You Gotta Go" (Japan "Tour Edition" bonus track)2:06


Fountains of Wayne
Additional Musicians
Technical Personnel
  • Arjun Agerwala - assistant engineer
  • Michael Brauer - mixing
  • Cliff Burnstein - management
  • Rudyard Lee Cullers - assistant engineer
  • Shauna Haider - artwork, design
  • John Holbrook - engineer
  • Eiji Kikuchi - photography
  • George Marino - mastering
  • Peter Mensch - management
  • Geoff Sanoff - engineer
  • Ken Weinstein - publicity
  • David Wolter - A&R

Quotes about the album[edit]

All quotes from Adam Schlesinger.


  • "I don't think anybody is counting on us for another one [Stacy's Mom Standard Hit] of those. I hope not."[20]
  • "As usual, there are a lot of songs about transportation and travel."[20]
  • "Our goal is 12 units, then if we hit 13, it looks like a runaway success."[20]
  • "(Billy Corgan) was busy putting that other Smashing Pumpkins reunion together while we were working on this Smashing Pumpkins reunion on our record."[21]


  • "Someone to Love": "a little bit 'Eleanor Rigby'-esque, in that it's about these two lonely people living in New York. It has a disco-y beat, which is something we don't do a lot of. Melissa Auf der Maur sings backing vocals, and that's the first female vocal we've had since Dominique Durand from Ivy on the first album."[22]
  • "'92 Subaru": "It kind of sounds like The Doobie Brothers or Little Feat or something."[22]
  • "Yolanda Hayes": "About a woman who works at the DMV"[22]


  • "We had these grand ambitions to change our process, we went up to Woodstock and jammed, but in the end, only one thing from that session, 'Strapped for Cash,' turned into an actual song. For the rest of it, we went back to our usual method of writing on our own and bringing in a song to be arranged by everyone. Woodstock was good to get back together and loosen up, but I guess we're pretty set in our ways."[22]


  1. ^ Layman, Will (April 15, 2007). "Fountains of Wayne: Too Smart to Be a Rock Band, Too Smart to Be Anything Else". PopMatters. Retrieved March 28, 2023.
  2. ^ "Fountains Of Wayne Get Busy On New Album". Billboard. January 18, 2006. Retrieved January 4, 2019.
  3. ^ Bruno, Anthony (February 28, 2011). " Folding Into for One-Stop Entertainment Shop". Billboard. Retrieved June 15, 2013.
  4. ^ Kelly, Amy (April 26, 2007). "Fountains Of Wayne Frontman: 'On New CD I Didn't Bring A Lot To The Table!'". Ultimate Guitar. Retrieved January 4, 2019.
  5. ^ Johnson, Heather (April 1, 2007). "Fountains of Wayne". Mix. Retrieved January 4, 2019.
  6. ^ "Fountains Of Wayne ready new album". NME Online. January 19, 2007.
  7. ^ "Traffic And Weather by Fountains of Wayne". Metacritic. Retrieved March 31, 2018.
  8. ^ Erlewine, Stephen Thomas. "Traffic and Weather Review". AllMusic. Retrieved March 31, 2018.
  9. ^ "Album Review of Traffic and Weather by Fountains of Wayne". Alternative Addiction. Retrieved May 8, 2018.
  10. ^ Beets, Greg (April 13, 2007). "Review: Fountains of Wayne". The Austin Chronicle. Retrieved March 31, 2018.
  11. ^ Gallucci, Michael (May 1, 2007). "FOUNTAINS OF WAYNE > Traffic and Weather". American Songwriter. Retrieved May 25, 2018.
  12. ^ Collis, Clark (March 30, 2007). "Traffic and Weather". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved March 31, 2018.
  13. ^ Christgau, Robert (September 1, 2007). "Consumer Guide: September 2007". MSN Music. Retrieved March 31, 2018.
  14. ^ LeMay, Matt (March 28, 2007). "Fountains of Wayne: Traffic and Weather Album Review". Pitchfork. Retrieved March 31, 2018.
  15. ^ Vrabel, Jeff (April 1, 2007). "Fountains of Wayne: Traffic and Weather". PopMatters. Retrieved March 31, 2018.
  16. ^ "Fountains of Wayne: Traffic and Weather". Rolling Stone. Archived from the original on April 7, 2007. Retrieved April 25, 2007.
  17. ^ Cohen, Ian (April 2, 2007). "Fountains of Wayne - Traffic and Weather". Stylus Magazine. Archived from the original on February 23, 2008.
  18. ^ "Traffic and Weather: Charts & Awards". allmusic.
  19. ^ "The 100 Best Songs of 2007". Rolling Stone. December 11, 2007. Archived from the original on December 15, 2007.
  20. ^ a b c d "25 Reasons to Love '07". Blender. January–February 2007. Archived from the original on February 12, 2008.
  21. ^ Pais, Matt (August 31, 2007). "'Smart, cool people like it' | Metromix Chicago". Archived from the original on February 14, 2012. Retrieved March 12, 2012.
  22. ^ a b c d Cohen, Jonathan (January 18, 2007). "Fountains Of Wayne Untangle 'Traffic' Jams". Billboard.

External links[edit]