Larry King, Reba McEntire, Stevie Wonder Honor Dick Clark at Private Memorial

Back in 1981

A 51-year-old Dick Clark warmed up the crowd at MusicFest in 1981 with stories from the 1950s and performing a little dance.

Guests gathered on the grounds of Clark's Malibu estate included Chubby Checker, Bob Eubanks, Jerry Weintraub, David Foster, Paul Anka and Berry Gordy. Clark died April 18 of a heart attack.

Dick Clark’s private memorial service was a celebratory affair, says Sam Rubin, longtime entertainment reporter at Los Angeles’ KTLA. He was one of some 300 guests who received an invitation by phone to gather on the grounds of Clark's ocean-side Malibu estate on Thursday, May 3 and honor the television pioneer who died on April 18 of a massive heart attack

The guest list included Pat Sajak, Stevie Wonder, Lionel Richie, Chubby CheckerBob Eubanks, Jerry Weintraub, Marie Osmond, Reba McEntire, Berry Gordy and Larry King, the latter who recalled Clark’s words of wisdom: that “the secret to broadcasting is to completely be yourself.” Disciple Ryan Seacrest was not in attendance as he was due on the American Idol set one hour after the memorial started, according to reports. 

VIDEO: 'American Idol's' Ryan Seacrest on Dick Clark: 'He Taught Me How To Do Television' 

Clark’s three children spoke first, says Rubin, with “eloquence and affection … less about all the professional accomplishments, more about what Dick was like as a dad.” They were followed by Clark’s widow Kari, who read a list of “65 reasons I love Dick Clark,” composed for his 65th birthday.

Eulogies by King, McEntire and Osmond followed as well as performances by David Foster and Paul Anka, singing “Put Your Head on My Shoulder,” and Stevie Wonder, who delivered a few measures of the American Bandstand theme, originally sung by Barry Manilow.

Watch Rubin’s recap at the KTLA website.

Twitter: @THRMusic