NEW YORK — Chubby Checker wants the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame to induct him before it’s too late.

“I don’t want to get in there when I’m 85 years old. I’ll tell them to drop dead, so you better do it quick while I’m still smiling,” Checker, 72, said Thursday.

His recording of “The Twist” and subsequent “Let’s Twist Again” are considered among the most popular songs in the history of rock ‘n’ roll.

” ‘Let’s Twist Again’ was the first rock ‘n’ roll song that received a Grammy (in 1962),” Checker said.

He equates a place in the Cleveland, Ohio-based hall to the ability to sustain his career.

“If you put me in when I’m too old to make a living, then it’s no good for me to be in there.”

He added: “The Rolling Stones, they’re in there. The Beastie Boys are in there, they’re young. Hall and Oates were just in there and they’re still making money.”

He made the comments on the red carpet for the annual Songwriters Hall of Fame gala.