Love Will Keep Us Together

Album: Love Will Keep Us Together (1975)
Charted: 32 1
  • Sung by the married couple Captain & Tennille, "Love Will Keep Us Together" is an affirmation that they will always be together, no matter what sweet-talking girl comes along. But to the writers, it had a different meaning.

    Neil Sedaka and Howard Greenfield wrote the song in 1973 during their last songwriting session together. They had been working together since their high school days, and in the late '50s and early '60s were one of the most formidable songwriting teams in New York, with huge hits for Connie Francis and for Sedaka as a solo artist. Greenfield was moving to California, so to them, the song was about their close personal and professional relationship. "We both cried after we wrote it," Sedaka said.
  • Neil Sedaka was the first to record the song, initially releasing it as a single in France in 1973. In 1974, he included it on his popular comeback album, Sedaka's Back. Toni Tennille loved the song when she first heard it, and in 1975 Captain & Tennille released it as their first major-label single (they had just gotten a deal with A&M Records). It became the title track of their first album and their signature song.
  • Daryl Dragon (The Captain) was formerly a keyboard player for The Beach Boys, and wanted "I Write The Songs," written by Bruce Johnston of The Beach Boys, released as their first single. That song ended up on the album, but was not issued as a single.
  • Daryl Dragon and Toni Tennille kept together for nearly 40 years. Both came from musical families and had some success before they teamed up, both professionally and romantically. They did very well as a team, but in 2014 this item was posted on their website, explaining that Toni had met with a divorce attorney:

    The Captain & Tennille appeared to the public as them being the ideal model for a "rock-solid" married pair. But almost all people naturally evolve over time, & sometimes hidden feelings start to be uncovered when one may read, just a little more into (the popularized, substitute heading appearing just below), stating, for instance: "Music Has Kept Them Together."
  • Neil Sedaka was enjoying a startling comeback when Captain & Tennille turned this song into a mammoth hit. When he wrote it in 1973, he hadn't cracked the Top 40 in a decade and had moved his family to England, where he was having more success. He kept writing songs, and when he had enough for an album, Elton John agreed to release it on the new label he founded, Rocket Records. That album was Sedaka's Back, and the first single was "Laughter In The Rain," which went to #1 US in February 1975. He didn't release "Love Will Keep Us Together" as a single because he had already issued it in France, and he liked his song "The Immigrant," which became the follow-up single, reaching #22 in May.

    Captain & Tennille's version of "Love Will Keep Us Together" shot to #1 in June, where it stayed for four weeks. Sedaka followed with "Bad Blood," which went to #1 in October. So yeah, 1975 worked out pretty well for him.

    His return to America was triumphant. "The next time I went to Los Angeles, it was to headline at the Troubadour," he told Bruce Pollock. "I took over the town."

    He added: "The crowning touch was winning the BMI award for Most Performed Song of the Year, on the Captain & Tennille's recording of 'Love Will Keep Us Together.' It was the dream of a lifetime. I mean, I'd been going to that BMI dinner since I was a kid. I got six awards in one year, including the Most Performed Song of 1975, beating out 'Rhinestone Cowboy.'"
  • As a tribute to Neil Sedaka, Toni Tennille sings "Sedaka is back" in the fadeout of the song. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Bertrand - Paris, France
  • According to Billboard, this was the biggest hit of 1975, with more weeks at #1 on the Hot 100 (four) than any other song. It was also a #1 hit for a week on the Adult Contemporary chart, and the BMI-certified most-played song on American radio. Their next four singles all topped the Adult Contemporary chart, and in 1980 they had another Hot 100 chart-topper with "Do That to Me One More Time," which was written by Toni Tennille.
  • Toni Tennille had to bend the lyrics to make it appropriate for a girl to sing to a guy. In Sedaka's original, he sings:

    Think of me babe, whenever
    Some sweet-talking guy comes along
    Singing his song
  • This won the 1975 Grammy for Record of the Year.
  • On August 16, 1975, as the English version was going down the Hot 100 chart, Captain & Tennille had a Spanish version of the same song ("Por Amor Viviremos") enter the chart. It was the only time an act had two versions of the same song - in different languages and on different singles - simultaneously on the Hot 100. Their entire Love Will Keep Us Together album was entirely re-recorded in Spanish and released. In addition, some reissues of the English version LP had the title track in both languages. A&M identified these versions with stickers on the shrink wrap.
  • You can tip your sailor cap to Daryl Dragon (The Captain) for the term "yacht rock," which came into vogue in the 2010s as a way to describe mellow but uplifting music from the '70s and early '80s. With his seafaring moniker and getup, he made the link between this kind of music and the yachting lifestyle - or at least the archetype. "Love Will Keep Us Together" is one of the best known songs in the genre.
  • The seminal British group Joy Division released a song in 1980 called "Love Will Tear Us Apart," which was a take-off on this song from the perspective of a depressed individual. It was for real: the lyric was written by Joy Division lead singer Ian Curtis, who was in a state of despair. Curtis killed himself before the song was released.
  • This was the last big hit that Hal Blaine, the prolific West Coast drummer who hit the skins on tracks for Sonny & Cher, The 5th Dimension, The Mamas & The Papas, Barbra Streisand and many others, played on.
  • Nickelback recorded a cover of this song in 2001 for the Andrew Denton Breakfast show's Musical Challenge on Sydney radio station triple M. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Lynne - Sydney, Australia
  • This was featured in the 2001 movie Get Over It, starring Ben Foster, Kirsten Dunst, and Sisqo. It was played as the opening song to his musical dream montage. In the montage, he walks home with a box of things his recent ex-girlfriend gave him back. As he walks along, Vitamin C (the singer) starts "singing" this song and eventually more and more people continue to follow him, making a street parade. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Kristy - La Porte City, IA

Comments: 26

  • Seventhmist from 7th HeavenTurned out that love didn't keep them together, because Tennille divorced Dragon after 39 years of marriage because she couldn't deal with his deteriorating health.
  • Jennifur Sun from RamonaYoung and beautiful, someday your looks will be gone. great lyrics
  • Barry from Sauquoit, NyOn June 20th 1975, the Captain and Tennille performed "Love Will Keep Us Together" on the NBC-TV program 'The Midnight Special'...
    Two months earlier on April 13th, 1975 it entered Billboard's Hot Top 100 chart at position #98; and on June 15th it peaked at #1 (for 4 weeks) and spent 23 weeks on the Top 100...
    And on June 1st it also reached #1 on Billboard's Adult Contemporary Tracks chart...
    Then on September 15th it peaked at #1 (for 4 weeks) on the Australian Kent Music Report chart...
    On August 10th the duo's "Por Amor Vivirermos" (the Spanish version) entered the Top 100 at position #86, and on that same week the English version was at #13...
    Between 1975 and 1980 the duo had fourteen records make the Top 100; seven made the Top 10 with two reaching #1, their other #1 was "Do That To Me One More Time" for 1 week in 1980.
  • Brian from Nictaux, NsThe spanish version of this song is called "Por Amor Viviremos" which means "Live by Love".
  • Brian from Nictaux, NsThe earliest releases of this single will read "Taken from the album 'The Captain And Tennille" this is because the single was released before they decided what to call the album.
  • Esskayess from Dallas, TxI'm glad these two were so happy, but when I heard that opening piano riff, my hand couldn't change the station fast enough.
  • Scotty from Cheyenne, WyAs a sports fan, I've heard a ton of renditions of the U.S. national anthem, but Toni Tennile did the best one I ever hear. I think it was at an L.A. Dodgers game back in the late '80s. Strong and pure.
  • Camille from Toronto, OhGreat upbeat song to remind me of my teenage days, great piano playing; once again, another song ending you always listen for when it comes on the radio: Toni sings "la, la, la, la...Sedaka is back! la, la, la la..."...hey, I always knew the line was in there, but my husband never heard it till decades later when I sang it to him.
  • Rick from Belfast, MeAwesome Julia!!!!! This was the song that my wife and I picked to be "our song" after we got engaged back in Sept 1975...after I graduated from USMC Parris Island, S.C....I still get worked up when I hear this song.....
  • Jesse from Madison, WiChris, you are the MAN! Someone else out there knows a synthesizer when they hear one. In fact this song has quite a bit of synthesizer in it. The Captain loved his E-mu modular synthesizer and as a result of his extensive use of it (and the sales it generated), was slated to receive E-mu Emulator Serial #001, but Stevie Wonder had better name recognition value to the company at the time of its release in 1981, so E-mu pulled a faux-pas and gave it to Stevie. But The Captain was an affirmed E-mu user throughout their career in the Top 40, AND throughout E-mu's own existence. Shame on them! Big business is NEVER fair...
  • Julia from Knoxville, TnThis was our wedding song
  • Guy from Woodinville, WaPhil, those "backup singer" are Toni! She did all her own backing vocals. It's fun to listen to her singing her own backing.
  • Dana from Greenwood, ScDon't forget the version by Mae West and Timothy Dalton in Sextette. I wish I could forget it...
  • David from South Sf, CaI love the bridge to this song.
  • Phil from Borrego Springs, CaAt the end of the song, the background singers are singing "Sedaka is back". Listen for it.

    Phil - San Diego
  • Moto from Pittsburgh, PaWonderful song. Its oh so 70's and that is what makes it cool. I remember this song very well as a child, when FM was still AOR and music was king.
    Glad I grew up in the 70's. Disco and bell bottoms forever!
  • Chris from Charleston, ScThere is a short synthesizer solo beginning at 2:17.
  • Jerry from Brooklyn, NyOn the Spanish version, only the main part was re-recorded. If you listen carefully, the background chorus from the English version is still used.
  • Robert from Puyallup, WaMy mother attended dance school with Toni Tennille (whose real name is Tennell, rhymes with 'fennel') in Montgomery, Alabama, where they both grew up.
    I love this song because it reminds me of the '70's. It was a rough, weird and silly decade, but it was a great time to be a kid.
  • Scott from Chicago, IlThe first time I heard this, I thought toni tenille was black....you have to admit the gal
    had some soul to her...another song that sounded
    great out of a transister radio, which is where
    I first heard it at a lakeside pier on vacation
    in Wisconsin in 1976
  • Dee from Indianapolis, InOne of my 1st songs I remember liking when I was a kid. I was around six when this was a hit and was starting to enjoy music, but my parents thought this kind of music was evil, so I had to sneak listening to it on a small transistor radio. Looking back on the songs from the 70's makes me laugh when you hear the lyrics of todays popular tunes which usually aren't very good.
  • Lynne from Sydney, AustraliaNickleback did a really good cover of this song for an australian radio show, i think it also featured as a bonus track on one of their cds any way its really good and worth a listen.
  • Stacey from Bailey, MsYEs i wish you play more seventies songs like captainand tennille and bee gees and alba and leif garrett more seventies i m a eight track tape collector these songs i grew up on !
  • Susan from Huntington Beach, CaI'm surprised no one has commented on Toni Tennille's "Sedaka's back..." at the end of the song - I always thought that was a nice acknowledgment.
  • Britney from Calabasas, CaWas featured on the show Will & Grace in the episode "Old-fashioned Piano Party". Will played it for Grace in the end to say he's sorry.
  • Jeff from Haltom City, TxAlso featured, more prominently, in the 1982 movie Stuck On You, directed by Michael Herz and Samuel Weil. Go to http://www.troma.com to order a copy of this movie.
see more comments

Laura NyroSongwriting Legends In Their Own Words

Laura Nyro talks about her complex, emotionally rich songwriting and how she supports women's culture through her art.

Dave Alvin - "4th Of July"They're Playing My Song

When Dave recorded the first version of the song with his group the Blasters, producer Nick Lowe gave him some life-changing advice.

Roger McGuinn of The ByrdsSongwriter Interviews

Roger reveals the songwriting formula Clive Davis told him, and if "Eight Miles High" is really about drugs.

Is That Song Public Domain?Fact or Fiction

Are classic songs like "Over The Rainbow" and "Take Me Out to the Ballgame" in the public domain?

Chris Fehn of SlipknotSongwriter Interviews

A drummer for one of the most successful metal bands of the last decade, Chris talks about what it's like writing and performing with Slipknot. Metal-neck is a factor.

Lajon Witherspoon of SevendustSongwriter Interviews

The Sevendust frontman talks about the group's songwriting process, and how trips to the Murder Bar helped forge their latest album.