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Today in Entertainment History

January 7, 2019

On Jan. 13, 1962, comedian Ernie Kovacs died in a car crash in west Los Angeles. He was 42.

In 1973, Eric Clapton made a comeback from drug addiction when he performed at the Rainbow Theatre in London. His backing band included Pete Townshend, Ron Wood and Steve Winwood.

In 1979, singer Donny Hathaway died in a fall from a hotel window in New York. He was 34. Hathaway was known for his duets with Roberta Flack.

In 1986, former members of the Sex Pistols sued former manager Malcolm McLaren. The suit was settled out of court.

In 2002, “The Fantasticks” closed in New York’s Greenwich Village. It was the longest-running musical in the world. It had begun production in 1960 and had been performed 17,162 times.

In 2003, musician Pete Townshend was arrested on suspicion of possessing child pornography in London. Townshend was later cleared of the charges.

In 2009, Kara DioGuardi (dee-oh-GWAR’-dee) made her debut as the fourth judge on “American Idol.”

In 2010, singer Teddy Pendergrass died of colon cancer in Philadelphia. He was 59.

Today’s birthdays: Actress Frances Sternhagen is 89. Comedian Rip Taylor is 85. Actor Charlie Brill is 81. Actor Billy Gray (“Father Knows Best”) is 81. Actor Richard Moll (“Night Court”) is 76. Guitarist Trevor Rabin of Yes is 65. Drummer Fred White of Earth, Wind and Fire is 64. Actor Kevin Anderson (“Nothing Sacred”) is 59. Actress Julia Louis-Dreyfuss (“Veep,” ″Seinfeld”) is 58. Singer Graham “Suggs” McPherson of Madness is 58. Country singer Trace Adkins is 57. Actress Penelope Ann Miller is 55. Actor Patrick Dempsey is 53. Actress Suzanne Cryer (“Silicon Valley,” ″Two Guys and a Girl”) is 52. Actress Traci Bingham (“Baywatch”) is 51. Actor Keith Coogan (“Adventures in Babysitting”) is 49. Writer-Producer Shonda Rhimes (“Scandal,” ″Grey’s Anatomy,” ″Private Practice ”) is 49. Actress Nicole Eggert (“Baywatch,” ″Charles in Charge”) is 47. Actor Michael Pena (“American Hustle”) is 43. Actor Orlando Bloom is 42. “Good Morning America” meteorologist Ginger Zee is 38. Actor Liam Hemsworth (“The Hunger Games”) is 29.

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