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Music / Captain & Tennille

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Captain & Tennille were an American musical duo whose primary success occurred in The '70s. The duo was composed of husband and wife "Captain" Daryl Dragon (born August 27, 1942 - January 2, 2019) and Cathryn Antoinette "Toni" Tennille (born May 8, 1940).

The duo's beginnings date back in 1972 when Tennille was the co-writer of a musical, and Dragon was working as a keyboardist for The Beach Boys. When Tennille's show put out a call for a replacement keyboardist, Dragon (who was between tours when he heard about the opening) met Tennille at the audition and landed the gig. Dragon would later reciprocate by recommending Tennille to the Beach Boys when the band needed an additional keyboardist, and they hired her, touring with them for a year (making her possibly the Beach Boys' one and only "Beach Girl").

Realizing their collaborative potential when the tour was over, Tennille and Dragon began performing as a duo. They scored numerous hits on the U.S. singles charts, the most enduring of which included "Love Will Keep Us Together" (which went on to win the Grammy Award for Record of the Year in 1975), "Do That to Me One More Time", and "Muskrat Love".

While their popularity waning after the 70s, they kept on recording on some capacity until Tennille announced their divorce in January 2014. Despite their divorce being somewhat contentious, they later seemed to have made up enough for Dragon to state in February 2017 that Tennille had returned to assist him with a serious health issue and to be at his side when he died of kidney failure on January 2, 2019.


  • Love Will Keep Us Together (1975)
  • Song of Joy (1976)
  • Come In from the Rain (1977)
  • Dream (1978)
  • Make Your Move (1979)
  • Keeping Our Love Warm (1980)
  • More Than Dancing (1982)
  • The Secret of Christmas (2007)

Tropes associated with them include:

  • Bawdy Song: "You Never Done It Like That" is perhaps the best example, though "The Way I Want to Touch You" (written by Tennille herself) and "Do That to Me One More Time" were fairly sultry as well.
  • Big Friendly Dog: Their bulldogs, who appear on the cover of Love Will Keep Us Together and Come In from the Rain. The liner notes of The Secret of Christmas have a photo of their bulldogs similar to the one in Love Will Keep Us Together.
  • Cover Version:
    • "Love Will Keep Us Together" was originally co-written by Neil Sedaka. So were two of their other big hits, "Lonely Night (Angel Face)" and "You Never Done It Like That."
    • "Muskrat Love" was originally written by Willis Alan Ramsey (who named it "Muskrat Candlelight") and was even previously covered by America (who gave it its most well-known title).
    • "Shop Around" was a Motown classic originally a hit for Smokey Robinson and the Miracles 15 years earlier.
  • Iconic Item: Captain's nautical hat.
  • Leg Focus: The covers of Dream and Keeping Our Love Warm showed that Tennille had some pins.
  • Marilyn Maneuver: The cover of Dream has Tennille doing one, showing one of her legs.
  • Modesty Towel: Both of them wear them in the cover of Keeping Our Love Warm, as they're shown in a sauna.
  • Ms. Fanservice: The cover of Dream has Tennille's dress being blown up, showing off one of her legs, and Keeping Our Love Warm had the duo in a sauna wearing only Modesty Towels, with Tennille clearly being the one more showcased.
  • No Celebrities Were Harmed: Faye Kellerman's book Burnt House features Priscilla, formerly of the singing duo Priscilla and the (now deceased) Major, whose gimmick was that he had been a major in the armed forces and sang in uniform. The titles of their hit songs are expies of Captain & Tennille hits, with "Petunia and Porky" clearly meant as an expy of "Muskrat Love".
  • Pie in the Face: Their 1976-77 TV variety series featured a segment called "Masterjoke Theatre", in which one of that episode's guest stars, playing host "Alistair Bannister," would have to hit themselves with a pie at the end of the skit. Some of the unfortunate targets included Leonard Nimoy, Vincent Price, Joe Namath, Annette Funicello, and Charo. In one episode, comic Rich Little refused to pie himself, which triggered a pie fight in which the Captain, Tennille and everyone else in the cast ended up plastered.
  • Porn Stache: Captain rocked a 'stache in the album covers of Make Your Move, Keeping Our Love Warm and More Than Dancing.
  • Shout-Out: In "Love Will Keep Us Together", they acknowledge that Neil Sedaka originally co-wrote the song (plus Sedaka's mid-1970s comeback) by having Tennille say "Sedaka is back!" in the song's fadeout. It wasn't the last Sedaka song they would make into a hit.
  • Statuesque Stunner: Tennille is 5'11", and some promotional pictures had her easily reach Captain.
  • The Quiet One: Captain was frequently silent and a man of very few words, playing a foil to his outgoing, vivacious wife Tennille.
  • Variety Show: They had one on ABC in 1976-77. They hated the show and blamed it in part for their decreased record sales over the next year or two.