Badge (3:18)

Cover of Eric Clapton's Rainbow Concert

From Eric Clapton's Rainbow Concert and 72 other releases

“Badge” is a song performed by Cream, written by Eric Clapton and George Harrison. It was included as a track on Cream’s final album, Goodbye. Peaking at number 60 on Billboard’s Hot 100, “Badge” was a minor hit after its release as a single in April 1969. The single was much more successful in the United Kingdom, where it reached #18.

“Badge” was originally an untitled track. During the production transfer for the album Goodbye, the original music sheet was used to produce the liner notes and track listing. The only discernible word on the page was “bridge” (indicating the song’s bridge section). Due to Harrison’s handwriting, however, Clapton misread it as “badge” — and the song was titled soon thereafter.

Harrison remembered the story slightly differently: “I helped Eric write ‘Badge’ you know. Each of them had to come up with a song for that Goodbye Cream album and Eric didn’t have his written. We were working across from each other and I was writing the lyrics down and we came to the middle part so I wrote ‘Bridge.’ Eric read it upside down and cracked up laughing— ‘What’s BADGE?’ he said. After that, Ringo Starr walked in drunk and gave us that line about the swans living in the park.”

A common legend or misconception is that the name came about because its chord progression is B-A-D-G-E (it is not) or simply because an anagram of a guitar’s standard tuning (E-A-D-G-B-E) can be arranged to spell “Badge”.

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Thinkin' 'bout the times you drove in my car
Thinkin' that I might have drove you too far
And I'm thinkin' 'bout the love that you laid on my table

MetroLyrics Full lyrics at MetroLyrics

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