An Update On The Former Playmate

Many individuals recall Barbi Benton as a well-known Playboy playmate who was additionally the girlfriend of Playboy journal founder and writer Hugh Hefner from 1969 to 1976. She was a outstanding face within the Playboy empire. However Benton (born Barbara Lynn Klein) is way more versatile than that.

She made her repute as a gifted singer, mannequin, TV persona, and actress. Benton additionally appeared on the CBS-TV country-themed comedy present Hee Haw (1969-1971), in addition to different common leisure packages.

Now retired, Benton has been married since 1979 to George Gradow. Her followers need to know what she been as much as recently and whether or not she ever expressed an opinion in regards to the #MeToo motion or the alleged misogyny related to the Playboy group.

We regarded into these and different questions. That is what we found.

After Playboy, Barbi Benton Had Careers In Each Tv And Music

Benton was born on January 28, 1950 in New York Metropolis and grew up in Sacramento, California. She was on Hee Haw for 4 seasons.

She guest-starred in lots of iconic tv exhibits within the Seventies and Eighties, together with American Bandstand (1975), The Bobby Vinton Present (1976), The Sonny & Cher Comedy Hour (1977), Charlie’s Angels (1980), Fantasy Island (1978-1982), The Love Boat (1978-1987), and Homicide, She Wrote (1986).

Benton starred in Sugar Time! (1977-78), a comedy a few feminine rock and roll group known as Sugar that was ready for his or her massive alternative in present enterprise. Benton performed Maxx Douglass, who was the group’s frontwoman when she wasn’t busy being a hat test woman. The present ran for 13 episodes.

Benton recorded eight albums, producing the ultimate one herself in 1979. She carried out songs, wrote them, and performed the piano. Certainly one of her tunes, “Brass Buckles” (1975), made it into the highest 5 on Billboard’s nation singles chart.

One other considered one of Benton’s songs, “Ain’t That Just the Way” (1976) topped the charts for 5 weeks in Sweden.

She’s Constructed A Joyful Household With Actual Property Developer George Gradow

(Eugene Powers/

When Gradow spoke to People in 1980 about his bride, he sounded totally besotted along with her. “It’s a fairy tale,” he stated. “When I go to bed every night I say, ‘I’m the luckiest man in the world.””

“We have a good relationship,” Gradow continued, “and one reason is that it’s not only built on love. Love is very illusory so we’ve tried to build our marriage on practical, objective things.”

Gradow mused about his success. “Here I am, tremendously insecure, with this extremely beautiful woman who could have anyone in the world. I wonder how the hell I did it.”

The two met in 1977 when a lady named Liz Prince, who previously labored for Gradow, requested him when he deliberate to cool down. He reportedly replied, “When I find someone who looks like Barbi Benton.”

Prince and Benton’s mother, who knew one another, performed matchmakers. Benton didn’t appear to have very excessive expectations for her preliminary assembly with Gradow. She was seeing actor Andrew Prine on the time and didn’t appear too excited by anybody else.

“I met George as a businessman, a financial adviser, and not as a possible husband,” Benton stated. “Besides, I was going out with another guy.” Her relationship with Prine didn’t final, so she invited Gradow to the Academy of Nation Music festivities.

He popped the query to Benton in simply 4 months. At first, she hesitated, then she thought it over and stated sure.

“He’s so funny and he has the energy of 10 men,” Benton defined. “We’re so alike. George is a one-woman man, and I could never get beyond dating more than one man at a time.”

They tied the knot on October 14, 1979. The couple shares two youngsters: Alexander (born August 23, 1986) and Ariana (born July 13, 1988).

Benton prioritized her household over her profession after her first little one, Alexander, was born, thus her performing and musical endeavors are restricted after 1986.

The Gradows appear to keep up a lavish way of life. She and Gradow have houses in each Los Angeles and Aspen, Colorado. He has a small however opulent fleet of luxurious automobiles: a Mercedes limousine, a BMW, and a white Corniche. He and Benton typically throw extravagant theme events worthy of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s fictional tycoon Jay Gatsby.

She Remained Shut With Hugh Hefner Till His Loss of life In 2017

Hugh Hefner started courting Benton regardless of their enormous disparity in age. She was 19, whereas he was 43. “I told him I never dated a man over 24,” Benton stated. “He told me he never dated anyone older than that either.” The superstar pair shared dwelling quarters for practically 9 years.

Hugh Hefner (L) with Barbi Benton in black and white image from 1971
(Alan Kent/Pictorial Parade/Archive Pictures/Getty Photos)

Invoice Boggs interviewed Hefner and Benton on the Playboy mansion in Los Angeles, in all probability someday within the Seventies, drawing every of them out about love, marriage, and constancy. In an fascinating alternate, Boggs requested the couple about being trustworthy to one another.

Hefner stated, “I think there’s a certain double standard [that applies to men versus women]. You’re raised a certain way and you fight a certain part of that background, but part of the boy remains father to the man.”

Benton wasn’t shy about admitting she felt a lot in another way about that topic than her beau did. After playfully teasing him about being “a chauvinist pig,“ she said, “I don’t agree with his rules. I feel that the woman has every right to do everything that the man has that they like to do.”

Benton added, “But Hef was brought up in an era where girls do not fool around, guys do. I live by that. I know that even though I would like to see the rules change, I’m not promiscuous by nature, so I probably wouldn’t fool around even if it were acceptable for girls to.”

When Boggs requested them if this double customary about faithfulness was “a time bomb” of their relationship, Benton paused for a second, then thoughtfully stated, “We’ve done alright so far.” Hefner talked about that there a few years prior they practically broke up. He defined that there have been “no other emotional involvements” in his life.

On one other event, Hefner stated that he felt dangerous about not marrying Benton. “I only regret not marrying Barbi because it finally led to our going separate ways [in 1976]. But I have been married and have children and wasn’t, and am not, interested in doing it again. Barbi hadn’t had that and wanted it.”

After Hefner died in 2017, Benton went to bat for him. “I honestly think that Hef had a lot to do with women making more money and getting better jobs. He’s had a huge impact on the entire world, and I think that’s for the better” (per People).

Benton additionally stated, “Hef always felt that he was in favor of women’s [liberation]. He was in favor of what they were fighting for, and he was always rather surprised that they felt that he was exploiting women.”

She sounded virtually wistful when speaking about him though so a few years had handed since they had been collectively. “I’ll miss him immensely,” Benton mirrored.

Barbi Benton was the numerous different of a person who was in all probability some of the influential, if polarizing, figures within the sexual revolution. Hugh Hefner clearly modified her life though they finally parted. She had the heart to disagree along with his views on sexual double requirements slightly than passively going together with them.

Benton went on to seek out her soulmate in George Gradow and appears content material to be a spouse and mother to their youngsters. In her profession and private life, she resolutely does precisely what she needs to do.

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