Classic 1973 Performance Of Tie A Yellow Ribbon Round the Ole Oak Tree

Classic 1973 Performance Of Tie A Yellow Ribbon Round the Ole Oak Tree

If you have been on this earth for a certain number of years, this classic 1973 performance of “Tie a Yellow Ribbon Round the Old Oak Tree” is bound to make you smile! (And if you haven’t, you’re in for a treat!)

From the archives comes this footage of Dawn singing at The Hollywood Palace on Vine Los Angeles. Notice that the group is introduced as just Dawn because in the early days, Tony Orlando’s name wasn’t part of the group name. Who knew! But, by the end of 1973, Dawn had become Tony Orlando and Dawn—the name we all know and remember!

There are just so many things to love about this piece of video! Tony Orlando strolls super casually onto the stage, donning slim, green polyester pants, a banded-bottom shirt, black platform shoes, a generous ‘stache, and long dark hair. He is the epitome of 1970s cool! 

As the chorus begins, Telma Hopkins and Joyce Vincent Wilson join Tony. The two gently sway and snap their fingers and provide their parts at just the right moments. Their dress and behavior are modest and demure, vastly different from artists of today!

The set is simple, but as the three mosey over behind the white bench, the story in the song gets suspenseful! A young man has been in jail for three long years. He’s coming home and wants to return to his love, but will she have him? 

If she will, she’s to put a yellow ribbon around the oak tree, clearly, one they both know well. If she won’t, there'll be no ribbon, and he’ll stay on the bus, broken-hearted. 

The ladies take a seat on the bench, and after a few lovely instrumental moments, Tony Orlando sings us out of suspense and into goose-bumpy goodness. You know how it ends! The bus is cheering because there isn’t one yellow ribbon—there are a hundred! And he’s coming home!

With ordinary but stylish clothing and without anything fancy or flashy, Tony Orlando and Dawn delivered a performance that relies on the music and the words! What a sweet one it was! 

“I also want the women to dress modestly, with decency and propriety, adorning themselves, not with elaborate hairstyles or gold or pearls or expensive clothes,” 1 Timothy 2:9

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