The Huffington Post shared a great article on Legendary Tonight Show Debuts. Here are some of the best early appearances from comedians.
1. George Carlin
Here’s video of George Carlin on the Tonight Show when he was still doing his clean act (with no beard and short hair).
2. Eddie Murphy
Eddie was already on SNL at this point but few people knew about his stand-up talents. Here’s one of the racier acts from the Tonight Show’s history.
3. Steven Wright
Steven Wright was one of the first of a group of comedians who came out of Boston, with this being his first TV show appearance.
4. Ellen DeGeneres
Ellen was the first female stand-up to get invited over to the desk, in her first appearance no less.