“Me And The Township” is the first song on Strawberry Alarm Clock‘s final studio album, 1969’s Good Morning Starshine. With its gritty performance and lack of any non-rock instrumentation, the track immediately announces that the Clock on this LP is in a different mood than the previous album, The World In A Sea Shell.
“Me And The Township” is a bare-bones rock song, sounding more like the James Gang than anything SAC had ever done before. Putting its keyboards to good, supportive use, and with the lead guitar picking out some groovy Woodstock-era runs, the song’s most startling feature, to long-time Strawberry Alarm Clock listeners, is its stoned and strangulated rock-god vocals from new singer/guitarist/songwriter Jim Pitman.
Compositionally, the song itself is very simple, as it’s mostly an excuse for some tough bluesy jamming and great faux-funky instrumental workouts. If Joe Cocker’s band had been stuck in traffic on August 17, 1969, the Strawberry Alarm Clock of “Me And The Township” could have filled in behind him at Bethel, NY and the crowd probably wouldn’t have had a problem with it.
“Me And The Township” is structured in a classic “side 1, song 1” kick-off way that was popular from Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band onward: it introduces the proceedings, avoiding any gravity or meaning and serving instead to set the scene for the album’s subsequent music. Each band member gets his turn to shine, with Pitman in particular showing off his lead guitar chops.