“Home Sweet Home”

“Home Sweet Home” is the fifth song on the 1968 album The World In A Sea Shell by Strawberry Alarm Clock. Although written by the same songwriters who contributed “Sea Shell” to the album, John Carter and Tim Gilbert, “Home Sweet Home” is decidedly peppier than that drowsy song — even funky. “Home Sweet Home” is one of the more recommended songs from the controversial side 1 of the LP.

The song features a punchy horn section that is somewhat smoothed out by the (as always on The World In A Sea Shell) velvety orchestral washes. The dramatic, funkified chord sequence during the verses is irresistible. An ultra-dense vocal chorus delivers the words and the whole piece is soaked in over-applied echo, just so the song doesn’t sound out of place on the album. (And it doesn’t — “Home Sweet Home” is fun but unquestionably cut from the same murky cloth as the record’s other tracks.)

The lyrics of the song are sung from the point of view of a wanderer, who seems to both brag about his adaptability and lament his loneliness, updating the old phrase ‘anywhere I hang my hat is home’ with a disassociated urban angst:

“Any place I hang my head is home
Sweet home”

Ultimately, “Home Sweet Home” manages to just rise above its sickly sweet musical arrangement to establish itself as an enjoyable tune with a vaguely defiant air. Not necessarily one of the band’s better songs — at least, not in the top tier — but certainly one of the album’s better songs and worth checking out.

Appears on

LP: The World In A Sea Shell (1969)

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