The Association founding member Terry Kirkman dead at 83
Terry Kirkman, a founding member of the folk-rock band The Association, died at 83.
His death was announced on the group’s Facebook page.
“We’re saddened to report that Terry Kirkman passed away last night, RIP Terry. He will live on in our hearts and in the music he so brilliantly wrote. Sending hugs and lots of love to Heidi and Sasha!”
The group found popularity with songs like “Cherish,” “Windy” and “Never My Love.”
The Association was nominated for six Grammys, including three for “Cherish.”
“‘Cherish’ came in one fell swoop,” Kirkman said of writing the hit in a 2015 interview. “I actually channeled it. Or I was channeled. I really don’t know what the source was. I’ve never understood the process nor do I think I will ever understand the process.
“And there are any number of songwriters out there, poets and writer’s writers, and artists of all kinds who will tell you that they’ve sat down to do something and the next thing you know, it’s done. And you don’t really know where it came from.”
In a piece for The Huffington Post, Kirkman also wrote, “Another strange aspect of the ‘Cherish’ story — one that has particularly baffled me — was that it became such a huge favorite for weddings. Couples by the thousands called it ‘their song,’ in spite of the fact it is so very much about love lost, not victorious love. But who knows? Maybe it was that stirring youth march tempo that did them in.”
He played with Frank Zappa in California in the early 1960s before Zappa formed the Mothers of Invention.
Kirkman and Jules Alexander formed The Inner Tubes, which merged into The Men.
When the group disbanded, a half-dozen members, including Kirkman, formed The Association.
The group opened the Monterey Pop Festival in 1967 and also performed on a number of TV programs including “The Ed Sullivan Show” and “The Smothers Brothers.”
Kirkman left the group in 1972, re-joined when the group reunited in 1979 and then left for good in the mid-1980s.
After leaving the business, the singer-songwriter became a drug counselor for artists in recovery.
Kirkman is survived by his wife Heidi, daughter Sasha, son-in-law and two grandchildren.