Barbi Benton is an American model, actress, television personality, and singer who is best known for being Hugh Hefner’s longterm lover. She has appeared on the covers of ‘Playboy’ four times and on the spreads twice. She was a regular on the comedy series ‘Hee Haw’ for four seasons, in which she was a featured singer, and co-hosted ‘Playboy after Dark’ with Hefner.
In this post, we shall all we know a out Barbi Benton. You will get to know her background, career, net worth, divorce from Hugh Hefner and her marriage with her current husband George Gradow.
Where is Barbi Benton from?
Barbi Benton was born Barbara Lynn Klein to a Jewish family in New York City on January 28, 1950. Her father was a military doctor, but after the family relocated to Sacramento, California, he worked as a gynecologist and her mother as an investment advisor.
She went to Rio Americano High School and studied a variety of classes, ranging from scuba diving to piano, as well as doing some “tearoom modeling” during her time there. She went to UCLA to study veterinary medicine but had to drop out because she couldn’t bear the sight of blood.
How old is Barbi Benton?
Barbi Benton is 72 years old as of 2022. She celebrates her birthday on the 28th of January, yearly.
Barbi Benton had joined up with a commercial agency to be “the new face in town” during her undergraduate days, and she began to appear in television ads. At the age of 18, she got a role as the co-host and companion of Hugh Hefner, the show’s director of entertainment, on the TV series ‘Playboy after Dark.’
She quickly fell in love with Hefner and was the one who discovered the Playboy Mansion West, where he still resides. She appeared in several photo shoots for Playboy magazine over the next few years, although she was never named a ‘Playmate of the Month.’
Barbi Benton had her first appearance on the cover of Playboy magazine in July 1969, and she had three more cover shootings in March 1970, May 1972, and December 1985. In December 1973 and January 1975, she made two more nude photo layouts.
In the 1970 West German comedy film ‘Mir hat es immer Spaß gemacht?’ (‘How Did a Nice Girl Like You Get Into This Business?’), also known as ‘The Naughty Cheerleader,’ she made her screen debut. Because the producers desired a more American-sounding name, she changed her name to Barbara Benton.
In 1972, she landed a role on the television show ‘Hee Haw,’ which included country music interwoven with comic sketches and one-liners. She was a fixture on the country variety show for four seasons until leaving in 1976 to pursue acting opportunities in Hollywood films.
In 1973, she played Miss Iowa in the satirical comedy-drama television film ‘The Great American Beauty Contest.’ In the same year, she starred in another Hefner-produced telefilm, ‘The Third Girl from the Left.’
During the decade, she starred on television shows such as ‘Marcus Welby, M.D.’ in 1972, ‘McCloud’ in 1975, ‘The Hollywood Squares’ in 1978, and ‘For the Love of It’ in 1980.
She appeared on ‘The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson’ from 1974 to 1980, ‘Sugar Time!’ from 1977 to 1978, ‘Fantasy Island’ from 1978 to 1982, and ‘The Love Boat’ from 1978 to 1987.
Barbi Benton made her country music debut in 1975 with the Playboy Records album ‘Barbi Doll,’ which reached number 17 on the US Country charts. ‘Brass Buckles,’ her single, reached the top five on Billboard’s Country Singles chart.
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‘Barbi Benton’ (1975), ‘Something New’ (1976), and ‘Ain’t That Just the Way’ (1978) were her next three country albums, with the single ‘Ain’t That Just the Way’ becoming a hit in Sweden. Takoma Records published her pop album ‘Kinetic Voyage’ in 1988.
From 1978 to 1980, Barbi Benton was a guest panelist on ‘The Hollywood Squares,’ and from 1983 to 1983, she was a panelist on the hybrid show ‘The Match Game-Hollywood Squares Hour.’ ‘Doug Henning’s World of Magic V,’ ‘Charlie’s Angels,’ ‘Tattletales,’ ‘Circus of the Stars,’ ‘Matt Houston,’ ‘Mickey Spillane’s Mike Hammer,’ ‘Murder, She Wrote,’ and ‘Riptide’ were among her television appearances.
Her following film credits include the major parts in the 1982 horror thriller ‘Hospital Massacre,’ also known as ‘X-Ray,’ and the 1983 fantasy adventure picture ‘Deathstalker.’
She left the entertainment industry in 1986, but has since participated in a number of documentaries on Hugh Hefner and ‘Playboy’ in general as herself.
Barbi Benton achievements
Barbi Benton is most known for her tight association with Playboy Enterprises and for her repeated appearances on ‘Playboy’ covers and spreads. She is also renowned for four seasons as a regular cast member on the comedy series ‘Hee Haw.’
During the 2006–07 season, CMT ran a series of reruns of Barbi Benton’s show ‘Hee Haw,’ for which she and fellow cast members got the ‘TV Land Award’ in 2007. Her single ‘Brass Buckles’ charted in the top five on Billboard’s Country Singles chart, while her single ‘Ain’t That Just the Way’ was number one in Sweden for five weeks.
Barbi Benton was contacted for a date by multi-millionaire Hugh Hefner, the founder and CEO of Playboy Enterprises, during the filming of ‘Playboy after Dark.’ Barbi, then 19, informed him she’d never dated anyone beyond the age of 24, to which the then-42-year-old playboy replied, “Neither have I.”
They began dating soon after and remained together for the next seven years, until they divorced in 1976. Hefner, who was already married, had no desire to marry again, but afterwards regretted his decision, claiming that it led to their divorce. Despite this, they remained friends.
Barbi Benton marriage
When former coworker Liz Prince asked George Gradow when he was getting married, he reportedly replied, “When I find someone like Barbi Benton.” Prince happened to know Barbi’s mother and set up a meeting between them, which eventually led to their marriage.
On October 14, 1979, she married real estate developer George Gradow. Alexander Gradow is the couple’s son, while Ariana Gradow is their daughter. She has worked as an interior decorator since 2002, dividing her time between their homes in Aspen and Los Angeles.
Barbi Benton net worth
Barbi Benton is a $20 million-plus Amhttp://celebritynetworth.comerican model, composer, actor, singer, and television personality. Barbi Benton was a regular on the comedy series “Hee Haw” and was frequently featured in the magazine “Playboy” in the 1960s and 1970s. In 1970, 1973, and 1975, she appeared naked in double spreads. Benton was never a ‘Playmate of the Month,’ despite her repeated appearances in the top shelf publication.
In the 1970s, Benton had a lot of success as a country and pop performer. “Brass Buckles” (1975), her first hit, reached number 5 on the Billboard country singles list.
Lutricia McNeal, an R&B singer, covered her 1976 single “Ain’t That Just the Way” in 1996. In the United Kingdom and Sweden, McNeal’s rendition of the song was a huge smash. Between 1975 and 1979, Benton produced and recorded eight albums.