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Entertainment History

December 22, 2014 20:49 GMT

(Following Advance for Use Tuesday, December 30)

On December 30th, 1944, Bob Wills and the Texas Playboys made their first appearance on the Grand Ole Opry.

In 1962, singer Brenda Lee was slightly injured when she tried to rescue her dog from her burning home in Nashville. The dog died of smoke inhalation.

In 1979, composer and lyricist Richard Rodgers died in New York at the age of 77. His musicals include "The King and I" and "The Sound of Music."

Also in 1979, Emerson, Lake and Palmer announced they were splitting up. They later reunited.

In 1981, XTC played their first American concert, in Philadelphia.

In 1999, an intruder broke into George Harrison's home outside London and stabbed Harrison and his wife. Michael Abram was later found innocent by reason of insanity.

Also in 1999, singer Johnny Moore of The Drifters died on his way to a London hospital after having breathing difficulties. He was 64.

In 2002, singer Diana Ross was arrested for drunk driving in Tucson, Arizona.

Today's birthdays: Actor Joseph Bologna is 80. Actor Russ Tamblyn is 80. Actor Jack Riley ("The Bob Newhart Show") is 79. Singer Noel Paul Stookey of Peter, Paul and Mary is 77. Director James Burrows ("Cheers," "Taxi") is 74. Actor Fred Ward ("The Right Stuff") is 72. Singer Mike Nesmith of The Monkees is 72. Singer Patti Smith is 68. Musician Jeff Lynne is 67. TV host Meredith Vieira ("Today," "The View") is 61. Actress Sheryl Lee Ralph ("Moesha") is 59. Country singer Suzy Bogguss is 58. Actress Patricia Kalembar ("Sisters") is 58. "Today" show anchor Matt Lauer is 57. Actress-comedian Tracey Ullman is 55. TV host Sean Hannity is 53. Singer Jay Kay of Jamiroquai (jah-MEER'-oh-kway) is 45. Drummer Byron McMackin of Pennywise is 45. Actress Meredith Monroe ("Dawson's Creek") is 45. Actor Jason Behr ("The Grudge," "Roswell") is 41. Actress Lucy Punch ("Ben and Kate") is 37. Singer-actor Tyrese is 36. Actress Eliza Dushku (DOOSH'-koo) ("Dollhouse," "Buffy the Vampire Slayer") is 34. Guitarist Tim Lopez of Plain White T's is 34. Actress Kristin Kreuk (CROOK) ("Smallville") is 32. Singer-guitarist Wesley Schultz of The Lumineers is 32. Singer Ellie Goulding (GOL'-ding) is 28. Drummer Jamie Follese (FOL'-es-say) of Hot Chelle (SHEL) Rae is 23.

(Above for release Tuesday, December 30th)

Copyright 2014, The Associated Press. All rights reserved.

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