When push came to shove, even Geraldo Rivera knew who to turn to when he needed to pack in an audience during the final challenge of “Celebrity Apprentice.”
He went with Tony Orlando.
If you were around at all in the 1970s, the mere mention of Orlando’s name starts the tune “Knock Three Times” playing in your head.
Of course, that’s just one of the hits Orlando, now 71, will bring with him to Borgata’s Music Box for a May 15 concert (not to mention one of the great mustaches in entertainment history).
Orlando’s run with two different incarnations of Tony Orlando and Dawn (most famously with Telma Hopkins and Joyce Vincent Wilson) produced a number of hits that have a way of sticking in your head such as “Candida,” “Tie a Yellow Ribbon Round the Ole Oak Tree” and “He Don’t Love You (Like I Love You).”
From there it was a successful TV run with “The Tony Orlando and Dawn Show” and 70s super-stardom.
Not bad for a former singer who had found a career in the business and producing side of music before being lured back to performing.
From there, Orlando’s had his personal ups and downs—even quitting music for a time—but eventually reigniting his music career, which has been going strong since he turned himself into one of the best live casino acts in the country as well as opening the Tony Orlando Yellow Ribbon Music Theatre in Branson, Missouri in 1993.
And his charitable work has been exemplary (his appearance on “Celebrity Apprentice” benefited autistic and developmentally disabled patients).
“My whole purpose is to take my career and turn it into good,” Orlando tells smashinginterviews.com. “All of the show business stuff that you read in magazines means nothing to me. But what does mean something to me is what good I can do with this career and how much money I can raise for veterans which I’ve done for 40 years since ‘Yellow Ribbon’ came out in 1973 when I worked for veterans with Bob Hope at the Cotton Bowl.
“From that day, I’ve also worked to raise money for the National Association for Retarded Citizens, MDA and now for diabetes,” he said. If I can’t take the 53 years of blessings that God gave me with this so called career or celebrity or fame or whatever comes with show business and turn it into something really profitable, which is to help people with health issues have better lives, then my career was worthless.”
Like we said, who doesn’t love Tony Orlando?