In 1963, the British music company EMI presented each member of the Beatles with a silver disc to commemorate the incredible sales of their Twist and Shout EP. A dance craze that set the world on fire, the Twist traces its origins back to an 1890s African-American plantation dance called wringin’ and twistin’.
In 1960, Chubby Checker’s song ”The Twist” put the updated dance on the map, and it maintained its status as a worldwide phenomenon for the next five years. Today, DYR looks back at songs that jumped on the Twist bandwagon, as well as instructs readers like you in its steps:
Songs That Took Flight Due to this craze…
Chubby Checker (1960): The Twist
Hank Ballard and the Midnighters (1960): “The Hoochie Coochie Coo”
Joey Dee and the Starliters (1961): Peppermint Twist
Sam Cooke (1962): Twistin’ the Night Away
Elvis Presley (1963): “Bossa Nova Baby”
Rufus Thomas (1964): “Somebody Stole My Dog”
Junior Walker and the All Stars (1965): “Do the Boomerang”
The Olympics (1966): “Baby, Do the Philly Dog”
“The Twist” Step by Step:
- Stand with equal weight on both feet while keeping them shoulder-width apart.
- Keep torso squared to hips.
- Place one foot slightly more forward than the other (optional).
- Hold arms away from the body and keep them bent at the elbow.
- Twist your hips, waist, and legs from side to side.
- Shift body weight to ball of feet and rhythmically lift up legs for styling.
- Dance your pains away!