The Cyrkle

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The Cyrkle
The Cyrkle.png
The Cyrkle in 1967
Background information
Also known as The Rhondells
Origin Easton, Pennsylvania, U.S.
Genres Pop, rock
Years active 1961–1968
Labels Columbia
Past members Don Dannemann
Tom Dawes
Earl Pickens
Marty Fried
Michael Losekamp

The Cyrkle was a short-lived American rock and roll band active in the mid-1960s. The group charted two Top 40 hits, "Red Rubber Ball," and "Turn Down Day". They still receive significant airplay on oldies radio stations across the United States.

Career[edit]

The band was formed by guitarists and lead singers Don Dannemann and Tom Dawes (the latter of whom also played bass guitar), who met while studying at Lafayette College in Easton, Pennsylvania. Dannemann enlisted in the US Coast Guard in 1966. The other members were Earl Pickens on keyboards and Marty Fried on drums. They were originally a "frat rock" band called The Rhondells but were later discovered and managed by Brian Epstein, who was best known as manager of The Beatles. Epstein's business partner was New York attorney Nathan Weiss, who was told about this band in Atlantic City, New Jersey, on Labor Day in 1965 by Nat Weiss. He became their manager and renamed them.[1] John Lennon provided the unique spelling of their new name, which is a reference to the circular roundabout located in downtown Easton. They were produced by John Simon.

In the summer of 1966, they opened on fourteen dates for the Beatles during their U.S. tour. On August 28, they headed the opening acts performing prior to The Beatles at Dodger Stadium. The other artists who appeared were Bobby Hebb, The Ronettes, and The Remains.[2] Before touring with The Beatles, The Cyrkle had a successful engagement at the Downtown Discothèque in New York City.[3] They were also on the bill for the final Beatles concert at Candlestick Park on August 29, 1966.

The Cyrkle is best known for their 1966 song "Red Rubber Ball," which went to No. 2 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. It sold over one million copies, and was awarded a gold disc.[4] It was co-written by Paul Simon of Simon and Garfunkel and Bruce Woodley of The Seekers. It was released on the Columbia record label. The band had one more Top 20 hit, "Turn-Down Day," later in 1966. After the release of their debut album, Red Rubber Ball, they recorded a second album, Neon, in late 1966, and a movie soundtrack, The Minx, in 1967. They followed that with various singles and then disbanded in late 1967.

Both Dawes and Danneman became professional jingle writers after The Cyrkle disbanded. Dawes later wrote the famous "plop plop fizz fizz" jingle for Alka-Seltzer. Danneman wrote jingles for Continental Airlines and Swanson Foods. He penned the original 7Up Uncola song.[5] Dawes produced two albums for the band Foghat, Rock & Roll (1973) and Energized (1974), also co-writing the song "Wild Cherry" on the latter.[6]

Discography[edit]

with U.S. Billboard (BB), U.S. Cashbox (CB), and Canadian (CAN) chart peak positions.

Singles[edit]

  • 1966 – "Red Rubber Ball" (BB No. 2, CB No. 3, CAN No. 1) / "How Can I Leave Her" – Columbia 43589
  • 1966 – "Turn Down Day" (BB No. 16, CB No. 18, CAN No. 16) / "Big, Little Woman" – Columbia 43729
  • 1966 – "Please Don't Ever Leave Me" (BB No. 59, CB No. 50, CAN No. 31) / "Money To Burn" – Columbia 43871
  • 1967 – "I Wish You Could Be Here" (BB No. 70, CB No. 57, CAN No. 46) / "The Visit (She Was Here)" – Columbia 43965
  • 1967 – "Camaro" / "SS 396" (By Paul Revere & The Raiders) – Columbia Special Products 466
Promotional single created exclusively for Chevrolet dealers
  • 1967 – "We Had A Good Thing Goin'" (BB No. 72, CB No. 65, CAN No. 69) / "Two Rooms" – Columbia 44108
  • 1967 – "Penny Arcade" (BB No. 95, CB No. 61, CAN No. 53) / "The Words" – Columbia 44224
  • 1967 – "Turn Of The Century" (BB No. 112) / "Don't Cry, No Fears, No Tears Comin'" – Columbia 44366
  • 1968 – "Reading Her Paper" / "Friends" – Columbia 44426
  • 1968 – "Red Chair Fade Away" / "Where Are You Going?" – Columbia 44491
  • 1966 – "Red Rubber Ball"/"Turn Down Day" – Columbia Hall Of Fame 33103

Albums[edit]

  • 1966 – Red Rubber Ball (BB No. 47, CB No. 47) – Columbia CL 2544 (Mono) / CS 9344 (Stereo)
  • 1967 – Neon (BB No. 164, CB No. 81) – Columbia CL 2632 / CS 9432

Compact disc re-issues[edit]

  • 2001 – Red Rubber Ball – Sundazed SC 11108
  • 2001 – Neon – Sundazed 11109
Both reissues feature the original album tracks plus outtakes, demos, and non-LP singles tracks.

Members[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Beatles' Manager To Handle U.S. Group, Port Arthur, Texas News, June 8, 1966, pg. 34.
  2. ^ Beatles Show Acts Listed, Los Angeles Times, August 11, 1966, pg. D13.
  3. ^ The Swinging Set, Music Revolution Still Going Strong, The Daily Review, Hayward, California, Wednesday, July 6, 1966, pg. 25.
  4. ^ Murrells, Joseph (1978). The Book of Golden Discs (2nd ed.). London: Barrie and Jenkins Ltd. p. 203. ISBN 0-214-20512-6. 
  5. ^ TV Star, Recording Star: The Power Of The Tube, Los Angeles Times, December 13, 1981, pg. U104.
  6. ^ On The Scene, Pacific Stars and Stripes (newspaper), Wednesday, March 9, 1977, pg. 16.

External links[edit]