Last night's American Music Awards saw the show's creator, the late Dick Clarke, honoured by Stevie Wonder, as the legendary musician paid tribute to his friend in song, and spoken word.
"Truly honored to have been asked, because that spirit I knew and saw on television was his real spirit in real life. Meeting him as a person was wonderful," said Wonder to Rolling Stone on the opportunity to perform. "He brought musicians, artists and songwriters of all the various genres together, and we perform in the spirit of music," he said. "It's a challenge to Americans and world leaders to do the same." Ryan Seacrest - who in recent years hosted New Year's Rockin' Eve with Clark - introduced Wonder, first offering up words of admiration for his late friend and peer. "I was in awe of [Clark's] star quality and how completely comfortable he was in front of the camera," Seacrest said. "Even when I got to know him well and count him and his wife Carrie as friends, I never lost that sense of awe." Seacrest said the American Music Awards was a fitting platform on which to honor Clark. "This show, on its 40th anniversary, still reflects Dick's original vision: bringing the top artists on the planet together on an equal stage," Seacrest said. "Dick loved the power of music and its ability to create pure joy. That's why we're going to use music tonight to celebrate the joy of his life."
Dick Clark died aged 82 on April 18, 2012, after suffering a heart attack following surgery to fix an enlarged prostate, a transurethral resection of the prostate.