Known famously for his version of an eighteen month old record recorded first by Hank Ballard and the Midnighters Chubby Checker records the song “Lets do “The Twist.
It was first suggested by Dick Clark that Danny and the Juniors do the song first but later declined.Chubby Checker was eighteen years old when he and a backup group called the Dreamlovers first recorded The Twist in a 35 minute session.
It was not until August 6,1960 that Chubby debuts The Twist on Dick Clarks Saturday Night Show, but also remember that Chubby had already performed the Twist for the first time before 3,000 teenagers at a club called The Ice House in New Jersey.
The Twist is the only single to top the Billboard charts twice, first in 1960 and then in 1962. When you hear stories of how Chubby Checker got his stage name they always give credit to Dick Clarks wife when actually she only came up with just half of it. Checker was working in an Italian meat market when his boss Tony gave him the name Chubby and then Clark’s wife gave him the other half “Checker”. An overnight sensation Chubby Checker tours with Clay Cole’s Christmas Rock’n’roll Show at the Paramount Theatre in New York with Neil Sedaka, Bobby Vee, The Drifters, Dion and Bo Diddley.
By 1961 the New York saftey council announces that of 54 cases of back problems reported in a single week, 49 were due to too much twisting. August of 1961 on the anniversary of the Twist, Let’s Twist Again is released to catch the beginning of a new wave of interest in the dance, this would be Chubby Checkers third gold record.
Find out more about Chubby Checker as we feature him as artist of the month on KWMC’s 1490 AM’s Little Red Rooster Show.
All known facts and information are by Wendy Johnson and all artist of the month shows are produced by Javier Martinez.