Karen Young grew up in a Northeast Philadelphia, Pennsylvania rowhouse. Before becoming an overnight international recording star with "Hot Shot," she recorded jingles and background vocals for Philadelphia-based production companies.
In the early 1970s Young performed with the group Sandd, featuring Philadelphia musicians Frank Gilckin lead guitar, George Emertz rhythm guitar, Frank Ferraro bass and Dennis Westman drums.
The song "Hot Shot" peaked at #67 on Billboard Magazine's Hot 100 in 1978, but spent two weeks at #1 on the magazine's Hot Dance Music/Club Play chart, thus qualifying Young as a bona-fide one-hit wonder. "Hot Shot" was written, produced and arranged by Philadelphians Andy Kahn and Kurt Borusiewicz. An LP entitled "Hot Shot" followed the hit single, both released by West End Records of NYC. "Hot Shot" was featured in the 1990 movie "Reversal of Fortune." The song was later used as a sample in Daft Punk's song "Indo Sliver Club" on their album Homework. "Hot Shot" re-mixes by Andy Kahn, MaxRoxx Music and DJ Ralphi Rosario were released in 2007.
She died unexpectedly of a bleeding ulcer.