Broadcast legend Dick Clark, who passed away Wednesday at the age of 82, got his big break in 1956, hosting "Bob Horn's Bandstand" -- a show that would later be renamed "American Bandstand."
Clark was so at home on the show that he kept the theme song, written by Barry Manilow and Bruce Sussman, as the hold music on his office's telephones long after it went off the air.
"We were all having lunch together and he needed to call his office for something," Sussman remembers. "When he called, they put him on hold, which made him laugh, and then suddenly he turned to me and said, 'Bruce, quick, listen to this.' He handed me the phone and the hold music was 'Bandstand Boogie,' the theme song Barry and I wrote for his show. It was such a sweet and adorable thing to do. That smile on his face as he watched me listen to the tune, that's how I will remember him."
Manilow similarly remembers Clark's kind spirit and enduring support.
“This is a sad day," Manilow says. "He was a dear friend, supporting me and my music for all of my years in the business. A great businessman and a true gentleman. An inspiration. My heart is so heavy now.”
"Above and beyond his being an icon in our industry with accomplishments beyond measure, he was first and foremost a real gentlemen, generous to a fault, and someone who never lost his infectious enthusiasm for the entertainment world and, especially, talented artists," Sussman added. "He was deeply loved and will be remembered."
FOLLOW NAUGHTY NICE ROB ON TWITTER
Also on HuffPost:
SUBSCRIBE AND FOLLOW
Get top stories and blog posts emailed to me each day. Newsletters may offer personalized content or advertisements.Learn more