AP PHOTOS: Dick Clark, America's top pop host

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LOS ANGELES (AP) — In his long career as host and producer, Dick Clark was the TV connection between pop music, its stars and eager fans. With camera-friendly, forever-youthful good looks and a broadcaster's poise, Clark held court on "American Bandstand" and "New Year's Rockin' Eve."

He brought rock 'n' roll into U.S. homes on "Bandstand" as a savvy messenger who knew what teenagers wanted and could ease the concerns of wary parents over unfamiliar tunes. And he made the corny traditions of New Year's a bit cooler with rock stars on hand.

But it was his business acumen that turned Clark into a major force in music and television. As executive producer of the American Music Awards, he provided a showcase for artists including Michael Jackson and Christina Aguilera. His Dick Clark Productions also brought movies, game and music shows, beauty contests and more to TV, including "The $25,000 Pyramid" and "TV's Bloopers and Practical Jokes."

Clark died Wednesday after suffering a heart attack at a hospital in Santa Monica, Calif. He was 82.

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