The 2011 VMAs are airing live from Los Angeles on Sunday night, and the latest addition to the evening’s already-stellar lineup is Tony Bennett. The 85 year-old (!) will captain what’s sure to be an emotional tribute to recently-deceased singer Amy Winehouse. Introducing a slew of performers who are currently being kept confidential by the folks in MTV’s ivory tower, we’re excited to see that Bennett, who had recently collaborated with Winehouse on a duet due this fall, “Body and Soul,” will make an appearance on the notoriously youthful VMA stage. While the majority of the MTV audience’s demographic was not yet even a twinkle in their parents’ eyes when Bennett took home his first Grammy in 1963, this certainly isn’t the first time an elder statesman has been booked on MTV’s annual celebration of the year’s best music videos. Want to see what we mean? Check out our list of the Top 5 Oldest People To Appear On-Camera at The VMAS!
5) George Clinton, 52 Years-Old (1993): George Clinton presented the Best R&B Video award alongside West Coasters Snoop Dogg and Dr. Dre in ’93. Then 52 years-old, the funk innovator and Rock & Roll Hall of Fame inductee must have been pretty psyched to hand Moonmen over to the lovely ladies of En Vogue. And the Funky Divas were most likely equally as pleased!
4) Lou Reed, 54 Years-Old (1996): Making a cameo with house band(leader) Jack White of Raconteurs, Lou Reed of The Velvet Underground was well into his fifth decade at the ’96 Video Music Awards. Hosted by Dennis Leary, big winners that night included Coolio, Alanis Morrisette, and Smashing Pumpkins.
3) Diana Ross, 55 Years-Old (1999): Who could forget the jiggle heard ’round the world? When Mary J. Blige accompanied Lil’ Kim, Lil’ Kim’s breast, and Motown sensation Diana Ross to present the award for Best Hip-Hop in ’99, all hell broke loose! The then-55-year-old Rosstook it upon herself to, on live television, cup and jiggle Kim’s pasty-covered, partially-exposed boobie.
2) Milton Berle, 85 Years-Old (1993): Whoever decided it would be a good idea to pair up Uncle Miltie with RuPaul on the 1993 VMAs knew what they were doing. Born in 1908, Berle was 85 at the time, but that didn’t stop him from inappropriately copping a feel on Ru’s breasts. Feeling accosted, the drag queen retaliated, making a comment about the now-deceased comedian needing to wear diapers. Sadface!
1) Tony Bennett, 85 Years-Old (2011): Even though it hasn’t yet aired or been cemented in pop culture history books, Tony Bennett’s forthcoming appearance on Sunday’s MTV Video Music Awards should have you all on the edge of your seats. His timeless talent and grace is bound to usher in a memorable tribute, and after duetting with Winehouse so recently, the 85 year-old vocalist is best fit for the job. Now, we just have to be patient and see who he’ll recruit to honor the late British star.