‘Cha Cha Slide’ Creator DJ Casper Has Died

DJ Casper Dead: The music world is mourning the loss of DJ Casper, who has died at the age of 58.
Credit: Universal

The music world is mourning the loss of DJ Casper, who has died at the age of 58.

The artist, known by his real name Willie Perry Jr, achieved legendary status for creating the iconic dance track, the ‘Cha Cha Slide’.

The song united partygoers worldwide in a lively dance at countless events, from birthdays to weddings.

DJ Casper’s wife, Kim, confirmed the sad news as per ABC – revealing that he passed away surrounded by loved ones.

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The ‘Cha Cha Slide’ song’s popularity knew no bounds, but DJ Casper’s vibrant career was abruptly disrupted by a cancer diagnosis seven years ago.

This led to limitations on his musical tours and prevented major surgery due to the tumour’s location.

Reflecting on the meteoric rise of his hit song, DJ Casper shared his journey with ABC, describing how he initially created the dance as an aerobic exercise for his nephew.

He said: “When I first did it, I did it as an aerobic exercise for my nephew at Bally’s. From there, it just took off.

“Elroy Smith from WGCI grabbed ahold of it.

“I have one of the biggest songs that played at all stadiums: hockey, basketball, football, baseball; they played it at the Olympics. It was something that everybody could do.”

In 2016, DJ Casper received a devastating diagnosis of two types of cancer, renal and Neuroendocrine, affecting his kidney and liver.

DJ Casper in 'Cha Cha Slide' video.
‘Cha Cha Slide’ creator DJ Casper has died. Credit: Universal

Despite his health challenges, his dedication to music and the dance he inspired never wavered.

He recounted: “They diagnosed me in 2016 with two kinds of cancer, which is renal and Neuroendocrine, which is kidney and liver.

“They went in to try to do surgery, and they found out the kidney was connected to the main artery, so they decided not to do it and just treat it.”

Tributes from the music community and DJ Casper’s devoted fans have poured in, expressing heartbreak and celebrating his enduring legacy.

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Fans are reminiscing about the countless joyful moments the ‘Cha Cha Slide’ brought to their lives.

One person said: “His legacy will live on at every bar mitzvah, quinceañera, and wedding,” emphasising the song’s enduring impact on celebratory gatherings.

DJ Casper’s passing marks the end of an era for a musician whose beats got people out of their seats and onto the dancefloor with infectious energy.

The ‘Cha Cha Slide’ will forever be a cherished memory, a symbol of unity and celebration that will continue to echo through parties and events for years to come.

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Written by Cal Gaunt

Cal is a former content editor at IGV who specialised in writing trending and entertainment news. He previously worked as a news reporter at the Lancashire Telegraph and earned an NCTJ in Sports Journalism.