“Without Dick, a show like this would not exist,” Ryan announced to the Wednesday night audience. “He will be greatly missed.”
Clark’s hosted “American Bandstand,” from 1957-1988, a show that was truly revolutionary for musical television that featured acts like the Jackson 5, David Bowie, and Johnny Cash.
Seacrest, as many have learned over the past 24 hours, was a long-time friend of Clark’s. The two hosts worked together on “Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve” since Seacrest joined in 2006.
But, more importantly, Clark was an idol to Seacrest and you could certainly tell during last night’s ”Idol.”
“This is a tremendously emotional day for so many people – fans of music, fans of television, broadcasters and certainly me personally,” Seacrest told People Magazine backstage. “He taught me how to do television.”
Seacrest grew up studying Clark and said that he is “grateful for what he has given us.”
Clark’s energy seemed to live on. The “then and now” theme of last night’s “Idol” performances played like an extended tribute to the icon. Many – including Clark, himself – referred to him as “America’s Oldest Teenager.”
After the sad pause to pay respect to Clark, Seacrest sealed it up on a happy note.
“I know this guy – he's in a better place, saying, 'Hey, let's get on with the show, okay?'" Seacrest announced.
He added, “You got it, boss.”