- Family and Parenting
Chubby Checker's The Twist in 1960s - Dance Craze Nostalgia
Nostalgic memories of the fun we had during the 1960s dancing the Twist made famous by Chubby Checker popped into my head the other day. Talk about terrific exercise and fun! That was a dance that accomplished it all!
This goes back in time when I was in high school and I vividly remember slumber parties with my girlfriends when we would try out the various dance moves of the day and talk about the boys whom we wished would ask us for dates. Generally speaking most of those wishes never came to fruition. But it did not stop our speculating and dreaming about what it would have been like to have dated this young man or that handsome fellow.
We would practice the dance moves so that we would be prepared for those dates if and when they would occur. The Twist was a favorite!
Chubby Checker and The Twist
The song The Twist got almost everybody up on the floor dancing or at least wanting to dance.
The picture at the top of this page portrays both of my brothers and me during the time of the 1960s when Chubby Checker burst upon the scene with his hit single The Twist. This picture was taken probably around 1965 or somewhere near that date.
Chubby Checker's real name was Ernest Evans and he was born on October 3, 1941. One of his schoolmates was Fabiano Forte who later became known as Fabian. I can clearly remember many a girl swooning over Fabian!
Working at the Produce Market in South Philadelphia, Ernest picked up his nickname of Chubby which morphed into Chubby Checker for his first television broadcast.
Chubby Checker debuted at The Clay Cole Show in New York when he first introduced The Twist in July of 1960.
He had many other hit songs through the years which also became popular some of which include the following:
- The Huckleback
- The Fly
- Dance the Mess Around
- Pony Time
- Let's Twist Again
- Slow Twistin'
- Limbo Rock
- Twistin' USA
and there were others.
Chubby Checker's The Twist was known for getting adults up on the dance floor and joining their teens in this dance. From a personal perspective I can verify that it had my entire family up and learning how to do The Twist.
My Dad was an expert! He could not only do the dance moves as well as any teenager but he could do it double time! It was so much fun having him join our twisting parties with not only family but some friends we had over as well. I am certain that he amazed my girlfriends with his aptitude for that particular dance.
My Dad was an excellent dancer in general. In performing the twist dance he would not only be gyrating back and forth but lower himself almost to the floor by bending his knees and then slowly rise up again all the while keeping to the beat of the song.
The grin on his face while performing was priceless! My Dad was always jovial and a fun character as most all of my friends back then would attest. He was light on his feet and quite athletic in his day. I guess it just translated well into his rendition of doing Chubby Checker's The Twist . I am smiling just thinking back to those days of family fun and times we shared together.
Doing The Twist was fun and also great exercise at the same time. We were burning calories, toning our bodies and having a blast at the same time which was certainly a winning combination.
This video shows people still doing the Twist in 2007 and having fun!
Did you ever dance The Twist made popular by Chubby Checker?
Other Dance Crazes in the 1960s
There were other dance crazes in the sixties, but none as popular and long lasting as The Twist.
A few of the others included these:
- The Madison
- Mashed Potato
- The Mambo
- The Pony
- The Monkey
- The Swim
- The Monster Mash
- The Locomotion
Slow dancing and partners holding their other half will always be popular. But The Twist made it OK to go out on the dance floor unaccompanied and join in with the mass of others just enjoying the beat of the song and keeping time to the music.
Hopefully you enjoyed this nostalgic look back into the 1960s when the dance craze The Twist by Chubby Checker broke onto the scene and impacted my life and many others around the globe.
We loved dancing The Twist and listening to Chubby Checker. Just hearing those songs transports me back in time! It is still fun to dance and exercise in this manner.
© 2009 Peggy Woods