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The Association

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The Association - And Then...Along Comes The Association [Valiant Records VLS 25002] (July 1966)

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The Association


And Then...Along Comes The Association

Released: July 1966
Label: Valiant Records
Catalog: VLS 25002
Genre: Pop Rock

T R A C K L I S T:
01 Enter The Young
02 Your Own Love
03 Don't Blame It On Me
04 Blistered
05 I'll Be Your Man
06 Along Comes Mary
07 Cherish
08 Standing Still
09 Message Of Our Love
10 Round Again
11 Remember
12 Changes
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Album Review

And Then... Along Comes the Association is the debut studio album by the American sunshine pop band the Association, and was released on Valiant Records, in July 1966. It became one of the top selling LPs in America, peaking at number five, and remains the Association's most successful album release, with the exception of their Greatest Hits compilation. The album's success was primarily credited to the inclusion of their two U.S. hits ''Along Comes Mary'' and ''Cherish'', which peaked at number seven and number one respectively on the Billboard Hot 100, and were among the most-played songs on AM radio in 1966.

The album was preceded by a few non-LP singles as the Association struggled to establish themselves a commercial presence. Moving from the Jubilee record label to Valiant Records, the group released a cover version of Bob Dylan's ''One Too Many Mornings'', which received attention from Curt Boettcher. Boettcher, who had previously worked with the folk rock group The GoldeBriars, and demoed ''Along Comes Mary'' with lead guitarist Jules Alexander, was brought in by the group to steer the Association in a pop rock musical direction. Aside from ''Along Comes Mary'', the sessions with Boettcher provided the band with the song's B-side, ''Your Own Love'', and two other tracks that are featured on the album ''Remember'' and ''I'll Be Your Man''. The Association yielded some of the instrumental playing on And Then... Along Comes the Association to top L.A. session musicians, including guitarist Mike Deasy (who would continue to play on other Association albums), bassist Jerry Scheff, and percussionists Jim Troxel and Toxey French.

And Then... Along Comes the Association saw the group experiment with luscious vocal harmonies that anticipated the musical textures of Bottecher's later groups the Millennium and Sagittarius. In addition, the album incorporated a wide-assortment of influences, including folk rock, psychedelia, Baroque pop, and remains a cornerstone of sunshine pop. Along with the hit singles ''Along Comes Mary'' and ''Cherish'', notable tracks on the album include the reflective ''Enter the Young'' and the Addrissi brothers' ''Don't Blame It on Me''. The partnership between the Association and Boettcher—while innovative and commercially successful—was cut short after Boettcher began to overreach his authority in the group's musical direction. For their sophomore effort, Renaissance, the Association recruited Jerry Yester to replace Boettcher as producer.

In 1967, Warner Bros. bought the Valiant label and reissued the album, altering the cover by replacing all Valiant references with the Warner Bros. logo and new catalog number of 1702. On the back cover, the monaural and stereo catalog numbers of the Valiant issues at the bottom center were replaced by a ''MORE BY THE ASSOCIATION'' byline with the Renaissance and Insight Out album covers shown underneath. Copies exist with the gold WB label as well as the green Warner Bros. Seven Arts label. []

The Association's Biography

The Association is an American sunshine pop band from California. During the late 1960s, the band had numerous hits at or near the top of the Billboard charts (including ''Windy'', ''Cherish'', ''Never My Love'' and ''Along Comes Mary'') and were the lead-off band at 1967's Monterey Pop Festival. They are noted for intricate vocal harmonies by the band's multiple singers. []
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