“I Climbed The Mountain”

“I Climbed The Mountain” is one of Strawberry Alarm Clock‘s final singles, and is a non-LP song that was backed with “Three” in 1969 after the released of the band’s final LP, Good Morning Starshine. “I Climbed The Mountain” is a nice but unremarkable orchestrated pop song with a subtle air of spiritual redemption (mostly in the lyrics, which quote the title of the well-known 1937 gospel song “Peace In The Valley” and have the general atmosphere of revivalist ecstasy).

Musically, “I Climbed The Mountain” is distinguished by two elements: a soft-rock string section and an interesting rat-tat-tat bass guitar part at the end of each measure. Vocalist Paul Marshall has a good, if not particularly strong, voice that matches the orchestra pretty well, and he does a good job with the tricky up-and-down melody.

The lyrics of “I Climbed The Mountain” are chock full of folk/gospel utopian visions, each line deepening the feeling of some religious experience having taken place, as the singer describes climbing a mountain and seeing “the other side”, a perfect land to strive for:

“There was peace in the valley
There was hope in the land
There was joy in the children
There was love, beautiful love
In the heart of man”

Ultimately, “I Climbed The Mountain” is one of Strawberry Alarm Clock’s weaker singles, sounding more like “Put Your Hand In The Hand” by Ocean than may be comfortable for many Clock fans. It wants to be a good song, and almost makes it, but there just seems to be a lack of conviction behind it.

Available on

CD: Good Morning Starshine (1969) Japanese bonus-track CD version
45: “I Climbed The Mountain” b/w “Three” (Uni 55190) (1969)
CD: Strawberries Mean Love (1992 compilation)

Right now on eBay: Strawberry Alarm Clock

5 thoughts on ““I Climbed The Mountain”

  1. one of their weakest songs but so different from their others making it an indispensable curio
     

  2. I just wanted to note something for collectors, since neither Allmusic nor Discogs has squat on this release. The song was composed by Carl Friberg and Ira Gasman. After SAC’s version tanked, Jerry Vale recorded it (on the album Jerry Vale’s World) and it got to #27 in 1970.

  3. It’s amazing how executives think they know best about music. What would be the point of paying for the studio time and record pressing and everything to get this out and then not promote it??

    But hey, nice job on the vocals regardless! Thanks for your comments on this site, too, it’s good to hear from you.

  4. An accurate review. None of us really wanted to record this song, but Russ Regan (UNI) promised they’d get behind it and revive the band’s career. He made it sound like an ultimatum. Of course, once we’d recorded it, UNI had other things to get behind.

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