Tom Dawes, bassist and founder of the Cyrkle (band name originated and spelled by John Lennon) died October 13 in Manhattan from a stroke following carotid artery surgery, at 64. I just found out today. I searched this morning but found nothing on SDMB about his death, although there are a dozen or so Cyrkle references.
The group was three Lafayette College (Easton, PA) students who started as a frat band, the Rhondells, in the early '60’s. Two summers they performed at the Alibi Lounge in Atlantic City. In 1965 they were discovered there by Nat Weiss, prominent entertainment lawyer, who recommended them to Brian Epstein, who became their co-manager.
Inner tensions broke up the band before they got into a recording studio, leaving Dawes free to tour with Simon & Garfunkel. While on the road Paul Simon offered and Dawes accepted his recently written Red Rubber Ball.
When that tour ended Cyrkle got back together. Brian Epstein chose them to accompany the Beatles’ 1966 summer tour. Cyrkle headlined the three opening acts in 14 concerts, including the Beatles’ final appearance before a paying audience in Candlestick Park, San Francisco, August 30.
According to www. classicbands. com, Cyrkle was also offered Paul Simon’s 59th St. Bridge Song (Feelin’ Groovy) but turned it down.
After Cyrkle, Dawes and another band member, Don Danneman, each headed their own successful ad agencies in New York. Dawes originated the “Plop, Plop, Fizz, Fizz” Alka Seltzer jingle, as well as “Coke Is It!” Danneman wrote Swanson’s “It’s the Next Best Thing to Your Good Cookin’.”
Red Rubber Ball is the only reason I care about Cyrkle. It’s a satisfying sub-two minute song, one of the very few. It gets in there, tells its story, and leaves you uplifted, even though its subject is the aftermath of a breakup. (Another upbeat, satisfying, less-than-two minute song about a heartbreak / breakup that comes immediately to mind is Anne Murray’s Snowbird.)