I have heard of various sources for the Moonwalk. I do know that Michael did not originate it (much to the surprise of many of my friends strangely enough) and he has said as much.

Recently in one of the article about Thriller I read that the dancer that taught it to Michael witnessed Michael's first performance of it (the oe who said he wondered what took Michael so long before he actually used it). Now I just saw this article referring to Bojangles Camel walk. Now showing Michael how to do something is not the same as being the originator so both the story about the man who taigh it to Michael and what is said about the Camel walk may be true.

Does anyone know, and does anyone have a link to a vid of Bojangles doing his Camel walk? I think WBSS posted some of his dancing once when they did a countdown of the best dancers of all time on some TV show.

And Robinson dropping out of school to start his career at the age of 7? Wow. I guess MIchael isn't the only one who stasrted young.


They Hit The Right Notes
Cord Cooper Mon Dec 24, 5:36 PM ET

By perfecting their skills, innovators Scott Joplin and Bill "Bojangles" Robinson helped vault black culture into the mainstream. "

Joplin, the legendary ragtime pianist, was influenced by his mother, who played the banjo and instilled a love for music in young Scott.
Joplin (1867-1917) began improvising on the church piano after services, drawing large crowds as he played his own arrangements of hymns and spirituals.
Since she couldn't afford lessons but wanted him to hone his talent, Joplin's mom, a maid, persuaded clients to let him practice on their pianos while she cleaned house.
By his early 20s, Joplin had become an accomplished musician. He studied harmony and composition at a black college in Sedalia, Mo., and spent the next several years entertaining saloon audiences with the new ragtime sound.
By 1898, he'd formed his own group and published six tunes. His first hit, "Maple Leaf Rag," was published in 1899, moving Joplin and ragtime into the national spotlight, notes Peter Gammond, author of "Scott Joplin and the Ragtime Era."
Joplin went on to write classics such as "The Entertainer" and "The Gladiolus Rag," as well as two ragtime operas.
The Dancer
Bill Robinson saw talent as a way to break through racial barriers. Born Luther Robinson in 1878, he spent his early years in Richmond, Va. His parents died when he was a baby.
While living with his grandmother, he became interested in local minstrel shows and began dancing in local beer gardens for spare change.
To encourage large donations, Robinson worked on his routines and formed dance partnerships with friends. At age 7, he dropped out of school to pursue a career in show business.
By perfecting a range of dance numbers in his late teens and early 20s, he was ready when opportunity hit. In 1902, singer-dancer George Cooper asked Robinson to be his partner.
Stepping Out
Robinson became one of the first black vaudevillians to break into other media.
"He developed his own style, wearing full dress, top hat and carrying a cane, and leaving the stage with his signature exit, the Camel Walk, a dance that Michael Jackson was to adapt much later as the Moon Walk," Henry Louis Gates Jr. and Cornel West wrote in "The African-American Century."
Robinson went on to perform in London and at New York's Palace Theater. He appeared in 14 films in the 1930s and '40s, including hits such as "The Little Colonel" and "Stormy Weather."
He became known as the ultimate scene stealer. Reason? Those feet.

"Bojangles's dance was controlled, light, perfectly timed, tapping out a rhythm as clear as a Louis Armstrong note, and it opened a public window on black vernacular dance," Gates and West wrote. Bojangles died in 1949. Schools in Harlem, N.Y., were closed the day of his funeral