April 18, 2012
Dick Clark, the television host who helped bring rock `n' roll into the mainstream on "American Bandstand," has died. He was 82.
Charlottesville couple Elaine and David Burton, like many are from the American Bandstand generation. As students of the former Lane High School they watched the show to learn the latest dance moves and to hear the latest music.
"You would hold hands and push each other off and spin around," said David Burton.
Elaine Burton says she often won the weekly dance contest here in Charlottesville with the dance moves she learned from American Bandstand.
"Of course the jitterbug, lets not forget that," said Elaine Burton.
The dance contest in Charlottesville was hosted by Bob Grant. Grant was a former WINA radio host. If you won, you would take home bottled cokes as your prize, which she says she brought home often.
Long dubbed "the world's oldest teenager" because of his boyish appearance, Clark also was a successful businessman. He hosted an annual New Year's Eve special and supplied a variety of game shows and music specials to TV, including and the American Music Awards.
Spokesman Paul Shefrin says Clark died of a massive heart attack. Clark had continued performing even after he suffered a stroke in 2004 that affected his ability to speak and walk.
The original "American Bandstand" was one of network TV's longest-running series as part of ABC's daytime lineup from 1957 to 1987. Over the years, it introduced stars ranging from Buddy Holly to Michael Jackson to Madonna.