Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Strawberry Alarm Clock


2-3-10 Strawberry Alarm Clock


7" BAREFOOT IN BALTIMORE / AN ANGRY YOUNG MAN UNI US 55076

1967? 2 TRKS no pic sleeve

7" GIRL FROM THE CITY / THREE UNI US 55241

1971 2 TRKS no pic sleeve

7" INCENSE & PEPPERMINTS UNI US 55018

1967 2 TRKS no pic sleeve

CD INCENSE & PEPPERMINTS MCA US MCAD-22015

1990 10 TRKS 60's recordings

CD STRAWBERRIES MEAN LOVE BIG BEAT UK CDWIKD 56

1986 21 TRKS (8 x bonus tracks) (60's recordings) (’91 issue)

7" TOMORROW / BIRDS IN MY TREE UNI US 55046

1968 2 TRKS no pic sleeve


Easy to dismiss the Strawberry Alarm Clock as a one-hit-wonder, with “Incense and Peppermints”, but I do like them as a band. Trainspotters note: “Incense and Peppermints” only exists in mono, folks – doesn’t matter if it’s on a 7”, LP or CD – it’s mono or nothin’ at all! And it’s still a great single, 40+ years later…


Several years ago, I found some SAC singles that were not “Incense and Peppermints”: “Girl From The City” and “Tomorrow” (which would’ve been a great follow-up to “I&P”, but I didn’t hear it until 2007 or so). I even have an easy listening orchestra version of “Tomorrow”, believe it or not!

There are 4 x proper SAC LP’s, all of which have been re-issued on CD by Collector’s Choice. I recently found the UK collection CD “Strawberries Mean Love”, and it’s excellent. 21 tracks, mostly in stereo. Gets me where I want to go. Obscure 60’s in digital!


For years, I read that the SAC were from San Jose, but I read in the booklet for “Strawberries Mean Love” that they were originally from Santa Barbara. Tarred and feather for their genius “Incense and Peppermints”, I guess if the hippies couldn’t take them seriously…who could? And I don’t know of an easy listening orchestra version of “Incense and Peppermints”…too difficult to arrange for a big band?

So get yourself some hippie thrills and chill to the non-hit tunes of the Strawberry Alarm Clock on a CD today (oh, and have a nice clean mono listen to “Incense and Peppermints”).


p.s. Happy Joe Meek Day!


4 comments:

REVO said...

I've always loved I&P and should probably hear more from SAC. It's too kicky for the E-Z listening filter to work on it.

Ron Kane said...

The track "Tomorrow" is nearly as good as I&P. I also enjoy "Barefoot in Baltimore". There are some album tracks that are good, too. Amazing to me, they were from Santa Barbara, CA. Nothin' much is ever from there...in pop music.

Brian Ware said...

I love I&P as well. My band used to cover it and it's even on our live CD. I actually remember hearing "Tomorrow" a time or two on Orlando's WLOF TOP 40 AM back in the day. It was nice getting a copy on those discs from your party in Portland last year. I'd love to hear more...

Brian Ware said...

I just checked iTunes and there is an easy listening version of I&P on an LP called "Ultra Lounge - On The Rocks". It's by Martin Denny and it's a 5:31 medley with "A Beautiful Morning". The 30 second sample is of "Incense" and it's arranged EXACTLY like we'd want to hear it. An MP3 with a listening sample is also available on Amazon. It's worth checking out.