The Association

The most technically accomplished vocal harmony group of the 1960s, The Association sang “like a rugged heavenly choir”, as the critic Lilian Roxon memorably wrote. Formed from a 13-piece folk-rock group called The Men, and named at random from the dictionary (The Aristocrats had been an alternative), the new group enjoyed success with a string of sublime hit singles, from Along Comes Mary and Cherish to Never My Love and Windy. Best of all, perhaps, is Everything That Touches You. They suffered from an initial clean-cut image that led to the description “too hip for the square and too square for the hip”  – although they were cool enough to open the Monterey Pop Festival and made some fine albums, notably Insight Out (1967) and the essential Birthday (1968). Their best work was produced by Bones Howe, the king of sunshine pop.

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