Leif Garrett, teen pop icon of the big hair 1970s, was a global heart throb, reaching his maniacal fan-base through pop music and movies.
Leif was born in Hollywood, California, on the 8th of November, 1961. His first public media appearance was in the 1973 motion picture, Walking Tall, at the age of twelve. The two sequels to the trilogy established Garrett as an attractive surfer-boy commodity, all long blonde hair, blue eyes, kissy lips, and laid-back SoCal accent.
Garrett was signed by Atlantic Records in 1977 at the age of sixteen. His early hits were all cover versions of Californian pop classics, such as Surfin' USA, Runaround Sue, and The Wanderer.
Californian credentials fully established, Leif starred in the film Skateboard in the same year, and in 1978, he switched recording labels to Scotti Bros, where he released his greatest hit, I Was Made for Dancing, which reached Top 10 in the USA and UK.
By the end of the seventies, Leif was running out of pop idol puff, and started to drift into obscurity. Three more record albums were recorded and released in 1979, 1980, and 1981 (Same Goes for You, Can't Explain, and My Movie of You, respectively), however no big hits would be forthcoming for Leif, regardless of his icon status.
Garrett's career tapered off though the eighties, with appearances in the Frances Ford Coppola film The Outsiders in 1983, and later in Cheerleader Camp in 1987, and Party Line in 1988.
In 1999, on the 29th of July, he was busted in a police sting operation, and pleaded guilty for possession of cocaine and heroin. The Los Angeles Municipal Court ruled that Garrett could go into to rehab instead of jail.
RESEARCH SOURCES: Rolling Stone, VH-1, pheeny80 on GeoCities.