Henry Belcher and Major A. Mason III

Henry Belcher (left) tells his friend Major A. Mason III (right) about tap dancing in the 1930s when he joined with two friends to become the Six Sensational Sizzling Shoes. Their success brought new problem–with drugs and alcohol–which led Henry to leave the group. He stayed away from dancing for years, but a chance encounter with Gregory Hines got him dancing again.

Originally aired August 4, 2006, on NPR’s Morning Edition.