Yester's family moved from Birmingham when he was six months old, and he grew up in Burbank, California. He played guitar as a teenager in a dance band called Tom Driscoll and the Tomcats. He and his younger brother, Jim sang together as the Yester Brothers, playing folk clubs like the Garret Coffee House and the Unicorn in Los Angeles by 1960. When Jim went into the army, Jerry joined the Inn Group with John Forsha and Karol Dugan, which became part of the New Christy Minstrels. In 1963, he became a member of the Modern Folk Quarter (MFQ). Yester was featured on their two albums of 1963 and 1964, and played piano for The Lovin' Spoonful's "Do You Believe in Magic?" in 1965.
When the MFQ disbanded in 1966, Yester continued working as a solo performer and producer, crafting records with his wife, Judy Henske; his brother's band, the Association; the Turtles, and Tim Buckley. He replaced Zal Yanovsky as a full-time member of the Lovin' Spoonful in 1967, but the group split apart shortly after.
In 1969 Yester, Henske and Yanofsky joined together to assemble a wide-ranging concept album, Farewell Aldebaran on Frank Zappa's Straight Records. He and Henske debuted the following year as Rosebud, but the duo, and their marriage, broke apart in 1971.
- Brolly, Jack (n. d.) "Jerry Yester" interview. Timbuckleyandfriends.com
- "Jerry Yester" (December 8, 2010) Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia - accessed December 17, 2010