Chubby Checker - the story of the man who invented "Twist"
Chubby Checker (real name Ernest Evans) - American executor and author songs, which became popular by releasing a cover of a song by Hank Ballard "The Twist" and the song that follows "Let's Twist Again".
Ernest Evans was born on October 3, 1941 in Spring Gully, South Carolina, but he spent most of his life in South Philadelphia. When Ernest was still small, his parents took him to Sugar Child Robinson, child prodigy, as well as to the famous country singer Ernest Tabb. Young Evans was in such admirationthat he promised to take up music seriously in the future. And he kept his word: eleven years, he began to realize his dream by creating a street musical group.
In high school, he meets Fabian Forte, his future best friend, who himself in a few years will achieve success in show business.
The path to the dream
Evans always dreamed of being popular performer. After graduation, young Ernest recorded music, inspired by the work of his idols. At that time they were Elvis Presley and Fats Domino.
Working for Henry Colt, the owner of the Fresh Farm Poultry store, Chubby has repeatedly surprised visitors with their talent. Soon the boss started to advertise his gifted employee to customers through the loudspeaker. Henry and his friend Kal-Mann agreed that young Chubby would make a private record for Dick Clark: A piece of a Christmas song called "Jingle Bells" was cut, which Chubby was supposed to sing. Dick Clark was impressed and sent out Checker's recording as a Christmas congratulation to all my friends and associates in the music business. Cameo-Parkway liked it so much that they wrote a song together with Chubby called "The Class", and it became his first hit in early 1959.
In June of the same year, Chubby recorded his most famous hit "The Twist". Actually, the melody was written long before that by Hank Ballard. Bernie Lowe, president of Cameo Parkway Records, at first was not impressed Chubby's record, but Checker felt "The Twist" would be something special and worked hard to promote the album with non-stop TV series, interviews and live performances. Fourteen months later, "The Twist" became hit.
Chubby Checker's version of Hank Ballard's tune became popular and dance. While Elvis Presley did the dancing controversial part rock and roll after his first appearance on The Ed Sullivan Show in September 1956, Checker took their popularity to new level, because "The Twist" caused a whole movement in the United States or, as Checker himself called it - "dancing to the beat".
In the fall of 1961, record industry history was made when Checker's original hit, "The Twist", again entered the charts, and by January 1962 it was first places. No other album before or since has achieved this level. Combining its 1960 release with its 1962 comeback, "The Twist" spent an astonishing nine months on the US bestseller charts.
Between 1960 and 1962, dance and song became popular throughout the United States, and then worldwide. Chubby was invited to a whole week of constant performances, where, in addition to him, there were other representatives of the American stage. "The Twist" hit top 100 Billboard in 1960, and another song "Let's Twist again" also became popularbut next summer.
At the age of twenty-two, Checker married Katarina Lodders, a Dutch model and Miss World 1962. song Lody Lo he dedicated to her. They married in 1964 at Temple Lutheran Church in Pennsauken, New Jersey.
Chubby became so popular that even his goods brand (t-shirts, shoes, ties, dolls, raincoats, chewing gum) were everywhere. His success continued for many years with the release of one dance record after another. And with songs "The Fly" and "Let's Twist Again" he even got Grammy Award in the Best Rock Performance category. Hit after hit: "Slow Twistin", "Dancin` Party", "Popeye the Hitchhiker" and "The Limbo Rock".
The next few years after The Twist was written were fruitful for Chubby, as each became more popular than the last. In 1961, Chubby recorded "Pony Time"written by Don Coway and John Berry. He took first place and remained on the charts for 16 weeks. In between recording and touring, Chubby found time to add feature films to his portfolio, releasing "Don't Knock The Twist" and "Twist Around The Clock".
In 2000, Chubby took up production snacks to commemorate the 40th anniversary of The Twist by releasing chocolate bars, beef jerky, hot dogs and popcorn. And in 2007, Chubby returned to the charts again with hit dance track "Knock Down The Walls". This song appealed to a completely new audience for its powerful, straightforward rock pace and captured Chubby's continuous musical evolution.
The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland, Ohio awarded Chubby in July 2008 with a special reward. Chubby excited an ardent audience by performing his hits, new and old, to the delight of everyone. This was followed by a long photo shoot and autograph session, during which it was emphasized that Chubby loves the most to communicate with people.
Chubby's tour continued, and in 2009 he ended up abroad. There he gave special shows in Germany (2010) as well as his annual performances at Disney World.
Checker is the only artist who had both five albums in the top 12, the only one to ever have a song on the charts at number one twice in a row, and the only one who ever had nine double-sided hits. Nearly all of these early works contained some sort of version "The Twist". The song also popularized a new style dancing couples, which continues to be popular to this day, so the work of Chubby Checker played big role not only in music, but also in dance art.