The last time we checked out Toni Basil, it was, ahem, a different world. Seated at her dining room table, I interviewed the high-energy, hugely eccentric dancer/choreographer about her amazing contribution to the look, feel, sound and spirit of Quentin Tarantino’s ONCE UPON A TIME IN HOLLYWOOD (2019). My story ran in the New York Times.
Toni, of course, according to Tarantino, is the Goddess of Go Go. She was the go-to girl in the Department of Shaking Your Groove Thing during the mayhem of the ’60s. She famously shook it as the girl in the “Red Dress” sharing the screen with Elvis Presley. Yes, The Lockers. Yes, “Micky.” Her dance duet with Davey Jones of the Monkees in HEAD (1968) is one of our favorite “music video”-style film clips. As David Winters’ assistant choreographer on the legendary T.A.M.I. Show, a funky white girl got a brush-up with dance greatness — aka James Brown — that forever changed her style. She stood backstage next to Mick Jagger, as he was reluctant to follow James on stage. That was a tipping point for Jagger to get his dance act together.
The clip below, despite being so unfortunately out of focus, gives you a taste what this Goddess was good for a short four years ago.
Study go-go with a legend!
Toni Basil Go Go Zoom classes | July 5, 12, 19, 26 @ 4 pm PST | $10