August 11th, 2007 |


At the sunshine-pop end of the psychedelic spectrum, ‘60s legends Strawberry Alarm Clock played in the cozy backroom of the Pig ‘n Whistle in Hollywood at the Mods & Rockers closing-night party presented by the American Cinematheque. The band originally formed in Glendale in 1967, landing a chart-topping hit with the charmingly upbeat “Incense & Peppermints” and going through more line-up changes than any other band in history before calling it quits four years later. Though various members briefly reunited and toured in the ‘80s, the lineup this eve included five original members with the addition of one new guitar player. Not phased by the venue’s obligatory technical sound problems, the band proved that they were no mere one-hit wonders, kicking things off the right way with “Tomorrow,” followed by rockin’ renditions of “Paxton’s Back Street Carnival,” “Sit With The Guru” and, of course, “Incense & Peppermints.” Their gear was as impressive as their performance: George Bunnell’s 1962 pre-CBS Fender Precision bass immediately caught my eye, which incidentally he later mentioned was purchased as a throwaway from John Entwistle’s bass collection for a paltry $400 in the ‘70s. I must also mention that I really fucking love this town. Only in Hollywood would I bump into some long-lost buttrocker friends strung out on speedballs in a room full of aging hippies listening to a live performance of “Rainy Day Mushroom Pillow”… (LL)