Daryl Dragon — one half of 1970s easy-listening duo the Captain and Tennille — has died. He was 76.
The captain-hat-wearing keyboardist died of kidney failure in Prescott, Ariz., on Wednesday with ex-wife and former performing partner Toni Tennille by his side, a spokesman said.
“He was a brilliant musician with many friends who loved him greatly. I was at my most creative in my life, when I was with him,” Tennille said in a statement.
The pair were married in 1974 because “the record company was uncomfortable with” them living together out of wedlock, Tennille revealed in her 2016 memoir.
And love kept them together for 40 years — until Tennille divorced him over intimacy issues in 2014.
Still, she moved to Arizona to help care for Dragon during his earthly coda.
Dragon, the son of Oscar-winning composer Carmen Dragon and singer Eloise Dragon, was a classically trained musician who cut his teeth with the Beach Boys — where he
earned his moniker from singer Mike Love for always wearing a nautical cap.
But he later made a name for himself performing with Tennille beginning in the 1970s.
The husband-and-wife performers first found a wide audience with their Grammy Award-winning cover of the Neil Sedaka-Howard Greenfield song “Love Will Keep Us Together” on their same-named break-out record.
“#RIP Daryl Dragon, The Captain, a great musician, keyboard player and friend for over 40 years,” Sedaka wrote on Twitter. “He took ‘Love Will Keep Us Together,’ made it his own with the magic of his playing and her incredible voice. My sympathy to his family and to @ToniTennille.”
Covers such as “Muskrat Love” and “Shop Around” grew the group’s fan base, and their s writing chops won widespread acclaim in 1980 when their original tune “Do That to
Me One More Time” spent a week at the top of the Billboard Hot 100.
With Post wires