Toni Basil began her career as a dancer and assistant choreographer, working on such shows as Hullabaloo (1965) choreographed by David Winters. Later, she choreographed the hit film American Graffiti (1973) and also began appearing in films, including the now-classic Easy Rider (1969). After several films, she launched her music career with her first album, “Word of Mouth”, in 1981, which was released both as a record and a video, quite an innovation at the time. Culled from that album was a innocent little ditty called “Mickey”, which soon became a massive hit all over the world, first in Britain. The song topped the American music charts in December 1982, and the video (directed by Basil, as were all of her others) still receives airplay, today. In 1984, Toni Basil’s self-titled follow-up album was released, which included the American Top 40 hit “Over My Head”. Although she found future chart success elusive, Basil remained busy appearing in such films as Rockula (1990) and has appeared in a guest shot on Baywatch (1989) in the late 1990s. Her choreographer talents have also been utilized lately by superstars Bette Midler and David Bowie and, in 1998, she choreographed a successful ad for “The Gap”.
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