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Published: Wed, February 19, 2014 @ 12:00 a.m.

newsmakers

NBC wins ratings gold with Sochi, Fallon

The “Today” show won ratings gold last week in its morning-show competition against ABC’s “Good Morning America,” NBC’s first weekly win since the London Olympics in the summer of 2012.

“Today” averaged 6.22 million viewers for the first full week of competition in Sochi, with “Good Morning America” at 6.01 million, the Nielsen company said Tuesday.

Meanwhile, Jimmy Fallon’s start as host of “The Tonight Show” also was a ratings winner for NBC.

Nielsen company figures released Tuesday show 11.3 million people tuned in to watch Fallon’s New York debut Monday night.

It was the second-biggest audience for “Tonight” since May 2009, when Jay Leno stepped down for Conan O’Brien’s brief run as host.

Fallon’s “Tonight” debut fell short of the 14.6 million who tuned in Feb. 6 to see Leno sign off, again, after 22 years as host in Burbank.

Devo guitarist Casale dies at age 61

NEW YORK

Bob Casale, the guitarist for Devo, best known for the 1980 hit “Whip It,” died of heart failure, his brother and band member Gerald Casale said Tuesday. He was 61.

Devo founding member Casale said in a statement that his younger brother’s death Monday was “sudden” and “a total shock.” No further details on Bob Casale’s death were provided. The Casale brothers are natives of Kent, Ohio, where the band was formed.

Devo released its Brian Eno-produced debut, “Q: Are We Not Men? A: We Are Devo!,” in 1978. The new wave band reached platinum status with 1980’s “Freedom of Choice,” which featured “Whip It.”

Casale called his brother “a solid performer and talented audio engineer” in his statement.

Last year, Devo lost its drummer, Alan Myers, after a battle with brain cancer.

Mary Grace Canfield, ‘Ralph’ on ‘Green Acres,’ dies at 89

LOS ANGELES

Mary Grace Canfield, a character actress best known as part of the daffy Ralph-and-Alf brother-sister carpenter team on the TV comedy “Green Acres,” died Saturday in a hospice in Santa Barbara, Calif. She was 89.

The cause was lung cancer, her daughter Phoebe Alexiades said.

On “Green Acres,” Canfield was Ralph Monroe, who, with her brother, Alf, was perennially working on the bedroom of a city-slicker couple (Eddie Albert and Eva Gabor) at their newly acquired farm near Hooterville. She was a down-home gal in bib overalls and a white painter’s cap worn backward, a funny, plain-spoken woman doing “man’s work” before feminism made the term quaint.

The show ran from 1965 to 1971.

Canfield also appeared on TV in “Bewitched,” “General Hospital,” “The Love Boat” and other shows.

In addition to daughter Phoebe, Canfield is survived by husband, John Bischof; daughter Alison Carey; and three grandsons.

Vindicator wire services


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