Comedian David Brenner on The Tonight Show, Dec. 5, 1975.
Gary Null—NBC/Getty Images
March 16, 2014 10:27 AM EDT

David Brenner, the famed stand-up comedian who was a favorite on Johnny Caron’s Tonight Show, died Saturday. He was 78 years old and at his home in Manhattan, the New York Times reports.

Brenner frequently appeared on The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson as one of the shows most popular guests, performing more than 150 times. He gained attention through his anecdotes about daily life, but as his career went on, his comedy increasingly focused on current events.

Born in Philadelphia, Brenner graduated from Temple with a communications degree. He began as a writer of television documentaries and started in comedy in the early 1970s, landing his own late-night syndicated talk show, Nightlife, in 1986.

“In David’s final request he asked that one hundred dollars in small bills be placed in his left sock ‘just in case tipping is recommended where I’m going,'” his family said in a statement.

[NYT]

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