Toni Tennille is an American singer, songwriter, and keyboard player. She is most famous for being one half of the band Captain & Tennille with her ex-husband Daryl Dragon. The song that they are most known for is "Love Will Keep Us Together".


Toni Tennille was born as Cathyrn Antoinette Tennille. She was born and also raised in Montgomery, Alabama. Her father was named Frank and he was a former singer of Bob Cats with Bob Crosby. She has three younger sisters in her family tree. Her father’s musical chops would play a strong part in her future career. With such great musical genes in her family, Toni had an advantage when it came to music. She grew up in a household where music was a main topic of discussion because he father’s life was full with music.

Toni’s father was the owner of the furniture store and he served in the Alabama legislature from 1951 until 1954. She graduated from the Sidney Lanier High School for her primary education. She then went on to attend Auburn University in the state of Alabama for college education. She only went to college for two years instead of the traditional four year stint.

In the year 1959, her family moved from Alabama to live in the small town of Balboa, located in California. Her father had to move them there because he got a job as a file clerk. He then became a statistical analyst for the North American Rockwell Corporation.

Music Career

Early in her career, she performed classical piano. She also sung in the big band of her university called the Auburn Knights. Her early experiences performing for her fellow college students gave her experience and the confidence that she could perform for large groups of strangers.

After the Mother Earth band was finished, Toni’s husband went back to the Beach boys and introduced Tennille to his band. She was playing an electric piano with this band in the tour of 1972. Dragon and Tennille formed Captain & Tennille in 1973 and they started to perform in local clubs.

She has done many musical projects without her husband. Her solo work include session work and studio albums. She uses a contralto Vocal range that spans at 2 and half octaves for her singing voice. Many of her fans remember her for her unique voice. She was highly respected in her industry because of her ability to play an instrument while signing at the same time.


Life On the Road

In an interview with Classic Bands, Toni shared her daily routine and how her life is now that she is still a touring musician in the twilight of her career. When asked how a typical day goes for her, she said, “Well, there really isn't a typical day. It depends on whether I'm on the road or whether I'm home. Daryl and I are on the road quite a bit right now. I'm going to be doing the national tour of Victor, Victoria. I'm going into rehearsals for that in August and will be on the road with that until June or July of 1999. So, Daryl and I are busily on the road doing Captain and Tennille until that comes to a halt. Actually, well do our last Captain and Tennille concert on the east coast July 11, in Atlantic City.”

Touring all over the country can take its toll on Toni and her band mates but it is worth it for the artists to express their creativity, “Our last west coast performance will be at Harrah's at Lake Tahoe, the last week in June. That all goes on hiatus until I get through with Victor, Victoria. So, we're really busy. A typical day depends on whether I'm getting on an airplane or whether I've just come home full of jet-lag.”

When Toni gets to stay home and relax, her life isn’t full of crazy antics but she enjoys the comfort of the stable quiet home life, “My typical day at home after a tour is not very exciting. It's get up, do the morning chores, feed the dogs, feed the cats, take care of everything. Go to the dry cleaners. Go to the bank. Go to the supermarket. Cook dinner. I mean, that's the day. So, it's not very exciting. (Laughs) That's my life.”

Personal Life

Toni Tennille has a height of 5 feet with 11 inches which makes her a tall and beautiful woman. She got married to her first husband named Kenneth Shearer in the year 1962 when she was just 22 years old. Their divorce was finalized in the year 1972 after ten years of being together.

She got married again, this time to her music partner Daryl Dragon on November 11, 1975. The two moved to live in Prescott, Arizona when they got married. They were previously living together in Reno, Nevada. She met with her future husband dragon for first time in the auditions at San Francisco for a band member of ae musical. Dragon had already toured together with The Beach Boys and he had already appeared on their albums as a backup musician.

Toni Tennille decided go and get a divorce after being married with him after 39 years. Dragon said he did not know that his wife was not happy not until he got served with the divorce papers. This divorce got finalized in the year 2014. After their divorce, she moved to live in Florida as her sister Jane suggested. During the promotion of her autobiography, she said that the reason for the divorce was the inability of her husband to show any affection towards her.

After the divorce was finished, she said Daryl accepted the outcome and called to let her know that he was proud of her and wished her the best. They did not have children together even after all the time they spent as a married couple. There was speculation that not having any children was the real reason why they split.

Her net worth is 9 million dollars which she built up from being in a popular band in the 1970s.

Last Modified: Apr 7, 2020

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