Tuesday, June 7, 2011

wacky tacky icons: Candy Johnson

What can be said about Candy Johnson that hasn't already be shimmied?!  Little to no explanation is required to prove her wacky tacky credentials.  Candy Johnson is not just a member of wacky tacky, she is the President of the San Gabriel, CA chapter.

Bikini Beach (1964)

Candy was the little firecracker in the Beach Party movies at American International Pictures that ponied,  watusi'd, shimmied and shook to the delight of audiences and to the injury of young surfers and beach bums.  Her legendary bumps could knock you flat!

Stand back!

Her film credits include:

Beach Party (1963) - credited as "The Perpetual Motion Dancer"

Muscle Beach Party (1964) - Candy

Bikini Beach (1964) - Candy

Pajama Party (1964) - Candy

The "Perpetual Motion Dancer"
Even in a still shot, she seems to keep moving!

There is not a lot of information on Candy Johnson to be found on the internet.  She has a lackluster IMDb and just a wisp of a Wikipedia entry.  The real Candy Johnson may be hard to find but there is a plethora of other Candy Johnsons in the world ranging from male saxophone players to teachers to "models."  Something that I did not know about San Gabriel native, Candy Johnson, was that she recorded songs on her own label "Canjo" as Candy Johnson & Her Exciters.  

She may have acted, she may have recorded, but nothing, NOTHING, compares to the way this girl DANCED!

Beach Party (1963)

As a part-time, semi-professional dancer myself, I am just a little embarrassed to admit how many moves I have stolen from Candy.  Her dancing has always been a source of inspiration and fascination - she did it all barefoot!  I think my particular fondness for the Beach Party movies stems from the fact that I have always lived in Southern California and dreamed that when I went to the beach the whole gang would be there surfing, dancing, sky diving, drag racing, rum running and having a pajama party.  (For those of you who have never been to SoCal, it is EXACTLY like the Beach Party movies all of the time!)

Sometimes the way to the top is by twisting on the backs of others.

I don't know where Candy Johnson is but I have a feeling that she's dancing.


Mr. Tiny


  1. When you do Candy's moves, do you wear fringe?

  2. Candy was a wonderful person. I worked with her at the World's Fair as her saxophone player.