Bambi the Body and the Tomboy Club True Burlesque
True Burlesque tells a shocking true story from the (fake) glamor days of burlesque weekly!
In October 1967, detective Anthony Delano was "outraged and shocked" at the gyrations of one "Vanilla Williams" (Full fake name Princess Victoria Vanilla Williams) an African-American dancer at the super classy Tomboy Club in North Dade, Florida. Now this was in the south in 1967...I'm going to guess detective Delano was outraged at virtually ANYTHING an African-American did back then...but I'll cut him some slack because Vanilla could really shake it. At any rate, Vanilla was arrested and charged with disorderly conduct.
In court, the detective was unable to "adequately describe what went on, or came off, at the club" according to the Miami News of October 3, 1967. So in the interests of justice, Judge Carling Stedman decided to go see the show for himself.
Herbert Lane, owner of the Tomboy Club had a problem...Miss Vanilla had moved on...slipping the shackles of southern law, so to speak, the stripper had split. So Herbert put on a ringer. Bambi the Body!
Now Bambi the Body wasn't black, so we can suspect this would be in the club's favor. A slick move by the slick owner. However, Judge Stedman decided to bring his wife with him for the show! Lane is quoted as saying "My God, he's brought his wife...we haven't got a chance." Not only that, Bambi the Body was 38-22-35 and could shake it like a sister! Bambi was smokin' like a southern BBQ! The only photo of Bambi I find is here. I'm sorry, but it was was dark in the club...but you can determine her race. White as the sand on Miami Beach.
Guess what? Case Dismissed! The judge seems to have had a good time!
As for Vanilla, pictures of her are easier to find, as Jet Magazine liked her. Jet ran a photo of Vanilla in their November 2, 1967 issue, and they also ran a picture of her playing with Bullmoose Jackson's chihuahua ten years earlier! If this is starting to read like a Carl Hiaasen novel, that's Florida for you.
Bambi was from Alabama, but she also danced in Canada. I guess as a young girl she wanted to see the world.
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