Garth Brooks Helps Jay Leno Say Goodbye to ’The Tonight Show’ [Watch]
At the request of Jay Leno, Garth Brooks performed ‘The Dance’ during the host’s final episode of ‘The Tonight Show.’ Thursday (Feb. 6) night’s goodbye also featured appearances from dozens of celebrities, including Oprah Winfrey and Sheryl Crow.
Leno closed the show by clapping along to Brooks singing ‘Friends in Low Places.’
That came after an emotional last word from the 63-year-old, during which he remembered losing both parents during the show’s early years, and then his brother. After that, he said, the cast and crew of ‘The Tonight Show’ became his family. Leno exits after 22 years as host of the famous NBC talk show.
Before performing, Brooks thanked the host for being such a good friend to the industry, calling him “the dearest friend to entertainment.”
“If you were an entertainer and needed a friend and a way to the people, you were always it,” Brooks said. “I love you with all my heart.”
Brooks and actor Billy Crystal were the billed guests, but dozen of live and video tributes rolled during the one-hour show, including one from President Barack Obama. Crow’s appearance came during a comical version of ‘The Sound of Music’ song ‘So Long Farewell.’ Before asking Brooks to lighten the mood, Leno closed the show by quoting Johnny Carson.
“I bid you all a heartfelt goodnight,” he said.
Jimmy Fallon takes over as host of the storied program on February 17.