In the early 1980s, breakdancing had become a massive street phenomenon so popular that Hollywood was sniffing around the scene for inspiration. Street dancers had made a big impact in movies like Paramount's Flashdance, and MGM was ready to take the wild street style to the forefront of a major motion picture.
In the spring of 1984, Breakin' debuted on big screens across America on May 4, 1984. The movie was so hot that it flew to #1 at the box office, outpacing the #2 movie that also debuted that week by a cool $2 million: Sixteen Candles.
The fun film arrived with an equally high-energy soundtrack, packed with party classics like the Bar-Kays' "Freakshow on the Dancefloor" and the lead single, Ollie and Jerry's "Breakin'...There's No Stopping Us Now."
Ollie and Jerry were a couple of session musicians who'd come together as members of Raydio, the Ray Parker Jr. outfit responsible for the 1979 hit, "You Can't Change That." Both have an impressive musical resume; Detroit's Ollie Brown had been a member of Stevie Wonder's Wonderlove band, and even recorded with the Rolling Stones for five songs on the Black & Blue album. Singer Jerry Knight went on to have a respectable solo career before moving into production.
The duo created the movie's theme song, which blew up on video shows and the radio, rocking the summer of '84 en route to a peak position of #9 on the Hot 100 for the week of August 4, 1984. The #1 song in America that week: Prince's "When Doves Cry."
Recording a handful of songs during their brief career together, Ollie and Jerry never made an album. Jerry Knight died of cancer in 1996 at the age of 44. Ollie Brown is currently in real estate.
FUN FACT: The Breakin' soundtrack features rapper Ice-T's first appearance on a full-length album. At that point, he'd only released a few singles as a recording artist. Ice-T is the rapper on Chris "The Glove" Taylor's track, "Reckless." He also appears as the MC of the dance battles in the movie.