“Tie A Yellow Ribbon Campaign”

yellow_ribbon

Tie a Yellow Ribbon is not pro or anti -war. Nor is it a political statement. It is a simple way to show support for those who put their lives on the line to protect and serve our Country, our freedom and the freedom of others.

Displaying a Yellow Ribbon is a sign of loyalty to family, friends or loved ones who are welcome home.

Customarily it is used to welcome home men and women who have been away for a long time under adverse or particularly difficult circumstances such as war.

We will be “tying yellow ribbons ’round” every tree we can find during the month of April.

Adam’s Angels encourages you to go to any store that sells ribbon and….

“tie a yellow ribbon ’round….
…the trees in your yard
…the trees on your street
…the trees in your town,
….the trees… ANYWHERE!!!
…your street sign
…the street signs in your town
…the street signs ANY WHERE!!!

(for trees: 3 inch width ribbon works best- the length will depend on the size of the tree, simply tie in a bow around the tree or pole)

We also encourage you to get thin yellow ribbon and attach to a pin and wear proudly!!!

We also suggest putting a wide yellow ribbon through your belt loops and tie in a pretty bow or tying a yellow ribbon around your ponytail.

Even though the troops may not be able to see the support we are showing with the symbolic “Yellow Ribbon”, their families can !! Let us all “Tie one on for our Heroes” . Let us display the ribbons WITH PRIDE, till all the troops come home.

Words and Music by Irwin Levine and L. Russell Brown, copyright 1972; performed by Tony Orlando and Dawn, 1973. This song began to be used for patriotic purposes approximately 8 years after it’s initial release.

I’m comin’ home, I’ve done my time
Now I’ve got to know what is and isn’t mine
If you received my letter telling you I’d soon be free
Then you’ll know just what to do
If you still want me
If you still want me
Whoa, tie a yellow ribbon ’round the ole oak tree
It’s been three long years
Do ya still want me? (still want me)
If I don’t see a ribbon ’round the ole oak tree
I’ll stay on the bus
Forget about us
Put the blame on me
If I don’t see a yellow ribbon ’round the ole oak tree
Bus driver, please look for me
’cause I couldn’t bear to see what I might see
I’m really still in prison
And my love, she holds the key
A simple yellow ribbon’s what I need to set me free
I wrote and told her please
Whoa, tie a yellow ribbon ’round the ole oak tree
It’s been three long years
Do ya still want me? (still want me)
If I don’t see a ribbon ’round the ole oak tree
I’ll stay on the bus
Forget about us
Put the blame on me
If I don’t see a yellow ribbon ’round the ole oak tree
Now the whole darn bus is cheerin’
And I can’t believe I see
A hundred yellow ribbons ’round the ole oak tree
I’m comin’ home, mmm, mmm

History of Tie a Yellow Ribbon

Family Tradition

Display of a Yellow Ribbon is a sign of loyalty to family, friends or loved ones who are welcome home. Customarily it is used to welcome home men and women who have been away for a long time under adverse or particularly difficult circumstances such as war or prison.

Background

Did you ever wonder where the Yellow Ribbon Tradition came from? Most Music Historians trace the Custom to a 19th Century Civil War Song. Reportedly the Custom comes from a Civil War story about a prisoner’s homecoming returning from Andersonville Prison. In 1973 Tony Orlando and Dawn cut their number one song of that year and their all-time classic: “Tie a Yellow Ribbon Round the Ole Oak Tree.”

Folklore has it that the inspiration for the 1973 song came from a true incident that occurred on a bus bound for Miami, Florida. It seems that one of the passengers had just been released from prison and he was bound for home. He had written his wife and let her know he still loved her and wanted to be with her. He asked her to tie a yellow ribbon around the lone oak tree in the Town Square of White Oak, Georgia, if she still had feelings for him and wanted him to be with her. Everyone in the bus asked the Driver to slow down as they approached, there it was!

The Driver pulled over and phoned the wire services to share the story. It quickly spread throughout the country. Songwriters Irwin Levine and L. Russell Brown wrote the ballad from the news story.

And now, “the rest of the story”! L. Russell Brown had the inspiration for writing the song. One late Spring morning he drove 33 miles to Irwin Levine’s house and told him the story of the oak tree. It had nothing to do with any convict or news story. It was about a civil war soldier, a stagecoach and yellow (as Mr. Levine would say: “Use your imagination!”) handkerchiefs. Irwin changed the yellow handkerchiefs to ribbons so as not to offend anyone with the reality of what makes handkerchiefs yellow! L. Russell Brown and and Irwin Levine updated the story by changing the stagecoach to a bus. L. Russell Brown picked up a guitar and wrote the first eight or so lines of music and lyrics himself. Irwin picked up the ball and wrote the ending: “100 ribbons round the ole oak tree”. There was discussion about use of the word damn and then the ole song was written. According to L. Russell Brown: “Sorry Paul Harvey, but now you know the rest of the story”1.

“Tie a Yellow Ribbon Round The Ole Oak Tree” was released in February 1973. It was the number one hit by April 1973.

The song became a hit again in 1981 when the 52 Iran Hostages were returned after 444 days of captivity. The song was played throughout the United States because by then the Yellow Ribbon had become a symbol of loyalty.2,3,4,5

Credits

1 E-Mail from L. Russell Brown to American Family Traditions of 27 July 2001.
2 Irwin Levine Obituary
3 Hits of 1973
4 Edmonton Journal Sept 12, 1990, p. D16.
5 RQ Summer 1991, pp475-76
Lyrics; The Bruce Laingen Story