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This is Pop! copyright John Firehammer
Before and After
Taking its name from the last of Chad and Jeremy's charting singles, 1965's "Before and After," captures the folky duo after the successes of "Yesterday's Gone" and "Summer Song" and before their surprisingly hip take on psychedelia, "Of Cabbages and Kings.
As a single, "Before and After" is no great shakes. Not much else on the album is very memorable, either, but it's pleasant enough. Most songs feature the light folk-rock touch that made "Summer Song" such a great success with the somewhat-too-old for the Beatles crowd. There are nice mellow harmonies and smooth but not sickly sweet string arrangements.
"Why Should I Care" has nice breathy vocals reminiscent of the Zombies' Colin Blunstone. "For Lovin' Me" is a touch country, with gentle acoustic guitar picking. "Little Does She Know" is a change of pace, featuring an up-tempo Beach Boys bounce. It sounds a little like something off of "The Beach Boys Today" or "Summer Days (And Summer Nights)."
There's also a good version of Andy Williams' "Can't Get Used to You." Bonus tracks include an unreleased, loungy version of Duke Ellington's "Don't Get Around Much Anymore," a couple of folky numbers sung in Spanish (presumably for the foreign market, and a couple of duets by Chad Stuart with his wife Jill in place of Jeremy. These are very nice, particularly "I Can't Talk to You," which has a lovely melancholy quality to it. Jill's voice is thin but pretty and sounds very nice next to Chad's rich baritone.
Not the place to start, but worth having for fans of C&J's singles and the pleasures of "Of Cabbages and Kings."
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