Wednesday, January 21, 2009
Don't worry, I haven't gone bonkers and posted an album by the popular children's doll, Barbie. Instead, I am posting an album by the popular adult's doll, Barbi Benton! At least she was popular with male adults in the seventies. For those of you who watch "The Girls Next Door" you can thank Barbi Benton for the whole concept. She was the original Girl Next Door that shared the mansion with Hef. She met Hugh Hefner in 1968, when she was booked as "atmosphere" for his television show, Playboy After Dark. She pretended to be Hefner's girlfriend for a couple of episodes and soon found herself living the role full time. When he asked her out, she was 18 and he was 42. She told him that she'd never gone out with anyone older than 24, and he replied with "That's all right. Neither have I." Barbi graced the cover of Playboy many times and was featured in the magazine's infamous photo section but has never been featured as a Playmate of the Month centerfold in the magazine. She also never worked as a Playboy Bunny. After the break up with Hef, Barbi became a regular on the country music series, Hee Haw, as a scantily clad country cutie trading gags and appearing in comic skits with other regulars. She left the program after four seasons to concentrate on a more Hollywood-oriented career. She spent the rest of the 70s and 80s with appearances on "The Love Boat", "Fantasy Island", "Hollywood Squares", "Match Game", "Lobo" and the great "Fernwood 2-Nite". She did have a minor success as a recording artist. Her 1975 record, "Brass Buckles," was a top five hit on Billboard's country singles chart. Since the 90s, Benton has changed gears and now works as an interior decorator while making a few guest appearances on "The Girls Next Door". For your listening pleasure today I bring you Barbi's first album from 1974,"Barbi Doll." It's interesting to note that this album is on the "Playboy" record label. I wonder if this album would have even gotten made if Barbi had never shared her Bentons, (if you know what I mean)! Enjoy!
Barbi Benton-Barbi Doll