News just hit the wires that comedian David Brenner (1936-2014) died at his home today at the age of 78. Cancer was apparently the cause.
Born in Philadelphia, Brenner started out a documentary filmmaker, but eventually launched a career as a comedian. His big break came on January 8, 1971 when Johnny Carson let him do nine minutes of standup on The Tonight Show. Carson apparently liked Brenner’s observational comedy routine. In years to come, Brenner made a record-setting 157 appearances on Johnny’s show, sometimes as a comedy act, sometimes as a substitute host. Above you can watch the very first of those funny appearances.