"Ano Toki Kimi wa Wakakatta" (You Were So Young Back In Those Days) is a kayo kyoku that resembles that particular sepia-tinged photo of a young couple being nostalgically viewed some decades later. If there was something that the old Japanese pop songs loved to do, it was to wax wistfully. I've heard the song off-and-on over the years, but didn't know it belonged to Group Sounds band, The Spiders, since as I've mentioned in one other article for The Tigers, I wasn't ever a huge, huge fan of Group Sounds per se.
It may have been released in March 1968, but "Ano Toki Kimi wa Wakakatta" sounds like a summer song, complete with beach-&-ocean background. Written by Fumie Sugawara （菅原芙美恵）and composed by Spiders' guitarist Hiroshi Kamayatsu（かまやつひろし）, the song basically comes off as a serenade by the suitor asking that the target of his love be with him always. I wouldn't be surprised if the band's 14th single was often used at wedding receptions. As for the song's own success, it peaked at No. 6 on Oricon, and in the years and decades hence, it has become a popular tune to bring back on various shows and specials.
The video at the top just has a partial take on the song along with another one of their other hits, "Yuuhi ga Naiteiru"（夕陽が泣いている）, so the video above will provide you with the whole song. I felt like yelling the title right at the band when I saw it, since I was accustomed to seeing Masaaki Sakai and Jun Inoue (堺正章・井上順...who share the vocals here) considerably older as veteran TV personalities.
In 1991, the retro-aidoru group, Mi-Ke, did their own Eurobeat-y take on the classic via their debut album, "Omoide no Kujukuri Hama"（想い出の九十九里浜...Kujukuri Beach of Our Memories）. I also enjoy this cover since the vocals by the ladies seem particularly bright and summery here. I'm not sure but that may be Monsieur Kamayatsu himself helping out as well in this version.