In the mid-1980s, my wife and I attended a concert at a night club on Laclede’s Landing, the oldest part of the city of St. Louis and adjacent to the Arch and downtown. The concert was the return of the British Invasion, and featured many of the bands that had followed in the wake of the Beatles and the Rolling Stones in the 1960s. Those British bands collectively had an enormous impact on American music.
We heard several groups – Freddie and the Dreamers, Gerry and Pacemakers – and a duo named Chad and Jeremy, who were the real reason we were there. They were/are my wife’s favorite singing group. And Chad and Jeremy accomplished something at that concert that had never happened before in our married life, and only once or twice since.
We were on time for the concert. In fact, we were early. We were so early that we were first in line at the night club to get in.
Fast forward to 2008. A few days before Mother’s Day weekend, I was scheduled to speak at a conference in Chicago. The planets aligned, and my wife discovered that Chad and Jeremy would be in Chicago for three concerts that weekend – a Friday night house concert, a concert Saturday in Wilmette Auditorium, and a concert at Bill’s Blue Bars in Evanston on Sunday.
We did all three concerts. And we did it again Mother’s Day weekend in 2009. And we saw them at the Sheldon Theatre in October of 2009 when they came to St. Louis. And back to Chicago for Mother’s Day weekend in 2010.
And this coming weekend, they’re back in St. Louis for a benefit concert for the Animal Protective Association of Missouri. Would you be surprised to know that my wife been involved in getting them here, finding a hotel for them to stay, is working with the APA, delivering promotional flyers all over town, and creating two posters for the venue on Saturday night and a banner currently hanging in front of the APA’s offices? Or that we will be having dinner with them while they’re here?
Why does my wife have this commitment and devotion? Because Chad and Jeremy’s music – songs like “Yesterday’s Gone” and “Summer Song” got her through a difficult adolescence and the change of the teen years. Their music also helped shape the young woman that I would meet in early 1973 and marry some nine months later.
I suppose I owe them a debt as well.
And if you listen to their music, I think you’ll find that yesterday isn’t gone. In fact, yesterday’s back – and may never have left.
Top photograph: Chad and Jeremy performing at Space in Evanston, Illinois, this month.