- Strawbs are an English rock band founded in 1964. Although the band started out as a bluegrass group they eventually moved on to other styles such as folk rock, progressive rock, and (briefly) glam rock.
They are best known for their hit, “Part of the Union”, which reached number two in the UK charts in February 1973, as well as for “Lay Down” a popular Progressive Rock hit from the same LP. The Strawbs also toured with Supertramp in their “Crime of the Century” tour, doing their own “Hero and Heroine” tour, which drew musical similarities and themes.
The Strawbs formed in 1964 as the Strawberry Hill Boys while the founder members were at St Mary’s Teacher Training College in Strawberry Hill, London. The name was shortened to “the Strawbs” for a June 1967 concert in which they wanted to display the band name on stage. Their long-time leader and most active songwriter is guitarist and singer Dave Cousins (guitar, dulcimer, banjo, vocals) (born David Joseph Hindson, 7 January 1945, in Hounslow, Middlesex). In the early days Strawbs played with Sandy Denny (later lead singer of Fairport Convention and Fotheringay).
Although they started out in the sixties as a bluegrass band, the band’s repertoire shifted to favour their own (mainly Cousins’) material. While in Denmark in 1967, the Strawbs (Cousins, Tony Hooper and Ron Chesterman) with Sandy Denny recorded 13 songs for a proposed first album, All Our Own Work. It was apparently not issued in Denmark and the fledgling band could not get a UK record deal. (Meanwhile, Denny left to join Fairport Convention and the album was forgotten until it was issued on Pickwick Hallmark in the UK in the mid-1970s.)
They were the first UK group signing to Herb Alpert’s A&M Records and recorded their first single, “Oh How She Changed” Source Wikipedia