NewsLocal News


Billings native Chan Romero, who wrote 'The Hippy Hippy Shake', dies at 82

chan Romero zoom.png
Posted at 12:21 PM, Apr 22, 2024

Chan Romero, a Billings native and rock 'n' roll singer best known for his original song "The Hippy Hippy Shake," had died, according to a post on his official Facebook page.

The post was made over the weekend and did not list a cause or date of death. He was living in southern California.

Romero, 82, was born in Billings in 1941 and graduated from Billings Senior. After high school, he hitchhiked to Los Angeles, where he wrote "The Hippy Hippy Shake".

That led to his signing with Del Fi Records, the same label that had signed Latino superstar Richie Valens. His song was later covered by the Beatles and other big bands.

“Elvis had a strong effect on me. It just took me over and I said this is what I want to do,” Romero told MTN News in 2023 in a video interview from his home in southern California.

Romero is also the first Latino to be inducted into the Rockabilly Hall of Fame.

Related: Still shakin': Billings native Chan Romero reminisces over rock 'n' roll career