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Cream - Strange Brew

"Strange Brew" is a song by the British rock band Cream. First released as a single in June 1967 in the UK and US, it was later added to their second studio album Disraeli Gears. The song features Eric Clapton on lead vocals rather than the usual lead by Jack Bruce. The single peaked at number 17 on the UK Singles Chart in July of that same year. In the UK, it was the last Cream single to be released by Reaction Records.

In April 1967, during their first trip to New York, Cream recorded a song called "Lawdy Mama" with Ahmet Ertegun at Atlantic Studios, at the beginning of the sessions for what would become the Disraeli Gears album. The band cut two versions of the song, the first a typical blues shuffle, and the second converted to straight time in a more rock 'n' roll style (both versions can be heard on the Those Were the Days collection).

Producer Felix Pappalardi took the tape of the second version of "Lawdy Mama" and, with help from his wife Gail Collins, transformed the song into "Strange Brew" which according to Eric Clapton "created a pop song without completely destroying the original groove." One journalist noted that Clapton at this stage was employing Albert King guitar stylings; and that both "Strange Brew" and another Cream track, "Born Under a Bad Sign", "were practically Albert King parodies".

Clapton performs lead vocals on the song in a falsetto style. It was the first Cream single on which he sang lead. Unlike the group's previous single, "I Feel Free", no promotional video was made for the song, but the band mimed to it on television on the German program Beat Club on 19 May 1967.


Strange brew - killin' what's inside of you

She's a witch of trouble in electric blue

In her own mad mind she's in love with you

With you

Now what you gonna do?

Strange brew - killin' what's inside of you

She's some kind of demon messin' in the glue

If you don't watch out it'll stick to you

To you

What kind of fool are you?

Strange brew - killin' what's inside of you

On a boat in the middle of a raging sea

She would make a scene for it all to be


And wouldn't you be bored?

Strange brew - killin' what's inside of you

Strange brew, strange brew, strange brew, strange brew

Strange brew - killin' what's inside of you


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