The early rock 'n roll star Chubby Checker was born with which name?
And the answer: Ernest Evans.
Born in 1941 with the name Ernest Evans, Chubby Checker is best known for the hit song "The Twist." In 1960, his appearance on the television show "American Bandstand" sparked a dance craze, and the song became a number one hit.
"Come on, baby, let's do the twist!" With these lyrics, legendary artist Chubby Checker changed the dance floor forever. Allowing couples the mobility and choice to dance to their own tune, if not for just a few minutes, "The Twist" made waves in the American pop scene. After performing it on "American Bandstand," the song debuted in a No. 1 Billboard spot in September of 1960. In January of 1962, the song reclaimed its No. 1 spot, making it the first and only 45 single to ever appear in the No. 1 spot in two different years.
However, Checker wasn't always a rocker with moves to prove. Checker was born Ernest Evans in 1941 to the son of a tobacco farmer in South Carolina. After moving to Philadelphia at a young age, he began working odd jobs, including shining shoes and selling ice. It was at this time Checker realized his talent in impersonations, and began performing on the streets of Philadelphia in the styles of his personal heroes: Fats Domino, Jerry Lee Lewis, and Elvis Presley. Music executives took note after a few gigs in churches in the area, and signed on young Checker in 1959.
In 1960, Checker experienced his breakthrough. By revamping the song "The Twist," originally by Hank Ballard (the original version didn't contain its now-signature dance moves), Checker's career took off. Soon, he was dubbed "The King of the Twist."
Watch Chubby Checker perform "The Twist" below.