Today in Entertainment History – Sept. 17

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) – On September 17th, 1931, RCA Victor demonstrated the first 33-and-a-third RPM long-playing record in New York.

In 1963, “The Fugitive” began its run on ABC, starring David Janssen as Dr. Richard Kimble.

In 1964, “Bewitched,” starring Elizabeth Montgomery, made its debut on ABC.

In 1967, The Doors performed “Light My Fire” on “The Ed Sullivan Show.” Jim Morrison had been asked to change the line “Girl, we couldn’t get much higher,” but Morrison sang it anyway.

Also in 1967, The Who appeared on “The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour.” Drummer Keith Moon had set a flash powder explosion in his drum kit, not knowing technicians had already done so. The resulting explosion sent a cymbal into Moon’s leg and singed Pete Townshend’s hair.

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In 1972, “M*A*S*H” premiered on CBS. It stayed on the air for eleven years.

In 1978, ABC’s expensive sci-fi show “Battlestar Galactica” made its debut.

In 1980, Bette Midler’s concert film, “Divine Madness,” premiered.

In 1983, Vanessa Williams of New York became the first black contestant to be crowned Miss America. The following July, she also became the first Miss America to resign in the wake of her “Penthouse” magazine scandal.

In 1991, Geffen Records released “Use Your Illusion One” and “Use Your Illusion Two” by Guns N’ Roses. The two albums went on sale at many stores nationwide just after midnight.

Also in 1991, Hank Williams Jr. unveiled a statue of his father in Montgomery, Alabama, where his funeral was held in 1953.

In 1996, The Cranberries canceled the last nine shows of their U.S. tour because singer Dolores O’Riordan was suffering from a combination of exhaustion and the flu.

Also in 1996, London police intercepted and destroyed a booby-trapped book that an obsessed fan sent to singer Bjork (BYORK). The fan shot himself to death hours after mailing the package. The package never reached Bjork’s home.

In 1997, comedian Red Skelton died at a hospital near his home in Palm Springs, California, after a long illness. He was 84.

In 2001, David Letterman hosted the first late-night talk show since the terrorist attacks on September Eleventh. Letterman opened the show with no jokes, just his thoughts on the matter. Dan Rather was his first guest and broke into tears.

Today’s Birthdays: Actor David Huddleston (“Blazing Saddles,” ”The Big Lebowski”) is 85. Singer LaMonte McLemore of the Fifth Dimension is 80. Singer Fee Waybill of The Tubes is 65. Actress Elvira is 64. Comedian Rita Rudner is 62. Puppeteer Kevin Clash (Elmo on “Sesame Street”) is 55. Actor/director Paul Feig is 53. Director Baz Luhrmann (“Moulin Rouge”) is 53. Singer BeBe Winans is 53. Actor Kyle Chandler (“Early Edition”) is 50. Rapper Doug E. Fresh is 49. Actor Malik Yoba (“New York Undercover”) is 48. Vocalist Keith Flint of Prodigy is 46. Actor Matthew Settle (“Gossip Girl”) is 46. Rapper Vinnie of Naughty By Nature is 45. Singer Anastacia is 42. Singer Marcus Sanders of Hi-Five is 42. Singer-actress Nona Gaye is 41. Drummer Chuck Comeau of Simple Plan is 36. Actor Billy Miller (“General Hospital,” ”The Young and the Restless”) is 36. Actress Danielle Brooks (“Orange Is The New Black”) is 26.