Monday, February 27, 2017

Cyrkle Of Sound

The following is composed from a couple email conversations I had with original Cyrkle Of Sound band member Billy Miller.

The band members were:

Billy Miller - Guitar, Vocals, Writer
Jim Girarde - Bass Guitar
Chuck Booker - Trumpet
Alex Yanez - Guitar
David Gurrera - Drums
Zeke Esquivel- Lead Guitar
Ruben Gonzales - Keyboard

Note the additional accidental misspelling of "Sounds"

Cyrkle Of Sound was formed by South San Antonio High School students in 1966. 

The band was booked by Sam Kinsey (who ran the Teen Canteen) and would perform live at the usual array of gigs which included school functions, military bases, college parties. 

One noteworthy show that Billy recalls is playing at the Pusi-Kat Club in San Antonio opening for a band from Acapulco, Mexico called The Love Army.
They even once competed in a battle of the bands event and came up second behind scene kings The Chayns (known for their regional hit cover version of The Strangeloves "Night Time").

The band got connected with Augie Meyers through Sam Kinsey, as Sam was helping book appearances for Augie's band at the time, The Visions Of Lite. Augie at the time was still reeling from his recent success with "She's About A Mover" in his other band The Sir Douglas Quintet (featuring a young Doug Sahm). Meyers was responsible for the trademark Vox-organ-through-a-fender-guitar-amp sound that the Quintet was so known for.

"Lost Without You"

Augie had recently started up his own record label called VOL (which also featured two records of his own and an excellent record by another San Antonio band- The Graven Image). The Cyrkle Of Sound played all 8 of their original songs Augie, and he chose the two he liked best. 
Soon after, the band recorded the two originals over the course of an afternoon at Texas Sound Studios in the winter of 1967.

A record was mastered for pressing on November 16th, 1967, and was to be VOL Records #133.

While the record didn't do exactly take off, it received some airplay down the in the South Texas valley, and a few plays on the radio in San Antonio proper.

Like so many teen bands of the era, the group split up when most of the members were drafted by the US Army during Vietnam.

Thanks to Billy and Sam Kinsey!