Strawberry Alarm Clock-Incense & Peppermints


The psychedelic band, Strawberry Alarm Clock, began in Los Angeles in 1967. They have had many lineup changes over the course of their career. Their music has been described as psychedelic rock, psychedelic pop, and sunshine pop.

Strawberry Alarm Clock’s debut record entitled “Incense and Peppermints,” was released in 1967, and the song Incense and Peppermints reached number one on the Billboard Hot 100 Chart.

The record being reviewed here is the compilation album entitled “Incense & Peppermints,” which may be confusing because it has an ampersand in place of the word “and” on the original debut. This review is of the songs listed on the compilation.

The first song on the compilation is their biggest hit, and most recognisable song Incense and Peppermints. It became a huge number one hit and is remembered as their signature song. It is my favorite Strawberry Alarm Clock song, and to watch the video below, I get that trippy feeling that is what these psychedelic bands were going for back in that era.

The next song on the compilation, Rainy Day Mushroom Pillow is a song that is pretty self explanatory. It is slow, mellow, and just the right song for the lazy summer day in the sun, or the rain, psychedelic sixties style. Or take it indoors, turn down the lights, fire up the lava lamp, and do whatever people did back in the day. I wish I was around then to enjoy the vibe, but as I’ve stated before in other reviews, I just missed all the fun.

Birds In My Tree is the next song which starts out like it is going to be hard, but slows down when the vocals kick in. It is another feel good mellow song of peace and hope, at least that is how I interpret it.

Sit With The Guru is a happy song, and is a tune that perfectly describes what the phrase sunshine pop means. Listen, get happy, and feel good is the message.

Tomorrow is the next song on the compilation, another feel good trippy tune with some great harmonies. A beautiful song.

Barefoot in Baltimore is another song with great harmony parts, and it is a tune that seems to show a scene in the hot summer hanging out in Baltimore. Another feel good song to me, if not a bit about the hardships of growing up in the city.

Good Morning Starshine is another tune that can be considered sunshine pop, and it has been covered by many musicians, but this version is my favorite.

Birdman of Alkatrash is a silly spoof about the birdman of alcatraz, and has Donald Duck make some appearances. It was the b-side of the number one hit Incense and Peppermints. It is a garage rock sounding song that many people seem to dislike. I think it’s fun, and it makes me wonder what the guys were on when they recorded it.

Strawberries Mean Love is my least favorite on the compilation, and I still like it. It is kind of slow and drawn out, which works for this band most of the time.

The last song on the compilation, Starting Out The Day, is an upbeat tune that makes me feel that everything is alright with the world, at least back in the psychedelic sixties.

I was actually confused myself when I purchased the cd, because I thought it was Strawberry Alarm Clock’s debut album. After listening to it multiple times, and doing some research, I realized that this is a compilation, and I like it so much, now that I know better, I need to get all their studio albums. Much more great music to be discovered by Strawberry Alarm Clock.

Rating: A

6 thoughts on “Strawberry Alarm Clock-Incense & Peppermints

  1. Great info on Strawberry Alarm Clock. I remember hearing some of their music on the radio in the past and even today occasionally. Harmonies were very big in the late 50’s, 60’s and even into the seventies. Great music from the days gone by. Do you know what has become of the guys from Strawberry Alarm Clock?

    1. Hi Mitch, thanks for stopping by! The Strawberry Alarm Clock had many members over the years, but the majority of them are still around, with the exception of Lee Freeman, who passed in 2010 from cancer. You can get specifics as to what the band is up to here

      Please visit again! Happy you like the post!

  2. It’s interesting to read about Strawberry Alarm Clock. It’s my first time to read some details about this song from your article. I remember hearing about some hits before but I’m not well conversant with the band.

    I wonder if the band has produced any new hits lately? Personally, I love rock, reggae and country music and I love reading reviews about them. Many times I like slow music like the Mushroom Rainy Day Pillow and others especially when am relaxing on the couch.

    I enjoyed reading your review and I’ll be following you up for more posts.

    Best of luck


    1. Thank you Paul, Strawberry Alarm Clock have not any hits in a long time. But their music is timeless, Thank you for visiting, please come back again!

  3. I enjoy Pink Floyd’s music, but have only really listened to their later stuff. I knew who Syd Barrett was, but I wasn’t familiar with his music. I found this album review very interesting, especially hearing Barrett’s sound. It makes you wonder what Pink Floyd would have ended up taking if Syd Barrett remained their front-man.

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