Born in Salina, KS, Terry Kirkman went to California to study music and turned professional in the wake of a chance meeting with guitarist Jules Alexander. They put together a 13-member group that quickly fell apart in a disagreement over direction, and managed to keep the remaining six-man lineup together as the Association. A prodigious songwriter as well as a multi-instrumentalist, Kirkman was responsible for several of the group's best known songs -- in addition to "Cherish," the group's biggest hit (written with the Righteous Brothers in mind), these included "Enter the Young," "Requiem for the Masses," and "Six Man Band." Following the breakup of the original lineup in the early '70s, Kirkman was working as a producer at HBO when the notion of an Association reunion for a cable feature came up, and he got the ball rolling on what proved to be the group's second incarnation, which carried them into the mid-'80s, and the group has continued working into the new century. In 2003, Kirkman and the other members were inducted into the Vocal Group Hall of Fame.
by Bruce Eder