By Rick Balian
Chad and Jeremy (Chad Stuart and Jeremy Clyde) were part of the first wave of the British Invasion in 1963. Their folk rock style proved to be much more popular in the U.S. than in their native England. Their first song, “Yesterday’s Gone,” by 1964, had reached #21 in the U.S. but only #34 in the U.K. John Barry, who composed the music for 12 James Bond films and other movies, including Dances With Wolves and Born Free, discovered the duo performing in a club in London. He also produced their first records, including “Yesterday’s Gone,” and helped develop their softer sound, which made them stand out from the harder rock sound of most of the other sixties British Invasion groups.
Their natural charm and humor made them frequent guest stars on American TV, including The Patty Duke Show (playing a pop duo called Nigel and Patrick), The Dick Van Dyke Show (playing a pop duo called the Redcoats), and Batman (playing a pop duo called… Chad & Jeremy). They appeared as two wandering actors in an episode of the comic Western series Laredo. This also served as a pilot for their own show, but the show wasn’t picked up.
Yesterday’s Gone is a bittersweet recollection of a relationship that soured. It also unintentionally parallels a real-life situation in Chad’s life. He wrote the music and the lyrics. But Wendy Kidd is also given a credit. Wendy was the manager of a band that Chad was in just before he met Jeremy. “Yesterday’s Gone” was the first song Chad ever wrote. And he wrote it on Wendy’s piano. Incredibly, she convinced him to give her a songwriting credit in exchange for letting him use her piano. Chad regretted his decision soon after. Not only was yesterday gone but so was gullibility.