Born Eva Narcissus Boyd in Belhaven, North Carolina, she moved to the Brighton Beach section of Brooklyn, New York at a young age. As a teenager, she worked as a maid and earned extra money as a babysitter for songwriters Carole King and Gerry Goffin. Amused by Boyd's individual dancing style, they wrote "The Loco-Motion" for her and had her record it as a demo (the record was intended for Dee Dee Sharp). Music producer Don Kirshner was impressed by the song and Boyd's voice and had it released just the way it was. The song became an instant smash, reaching #1 in the US in 1962.