Wednesday
Apr222015

102 year old dancer get's to see herself for the first time ..... priceless!

Alice Barker was a chorus line dancer during the Harlem Renaissance of the the 1930s and 40s. She danced at clubs such as The Apollo, Cotton Club, and Zanzibar Club, with legends including Frank Sinatra, Gene Kelly, and Bill "Bojangles" Robinson. What a true happy day to see herself for the first time. Priceless video!!

Don't delay, get yourself in there and find the joy, start Swing Dancing or Lindy Hoppin' and you get to repeat the party every day you want. Get involved wherever you are. If you are around the Austin - San Antonio Texas area: Get a jump start today and let the party start!

Swing Dance Lessons and Dance in New Braunfels SWING JUNCTION at The Grande

 

Thursday
Feb272014

20 Original Lindy Hoppers Every Dancer Should Know (Or At Least See Dance) 

Tuesday
Feb252014

History of the Jitterbug (Funny)

Here is a rare clip of Whiteys Lindy Hoppers with some of the Originals like Frankie Manning and Norma Miller.



It is almost 70 years since Herbert "Whitey" White started a professional performing group of Savoy Ballroom swing dancers in 1935. Yet the film clips of Whitey's Lindy Hoppers continue to delight and astonish audiences and inspire new generations of swing dancers. See more info on Whiteys Lindy Hoppers at www.savoystyle.com

Greatest Performance Lindy Hop Scene

Caught on Film with some of the legendary Whitey's Lindy Hoppers ending with Frankie Manning (high quality) - Movie: Hellzapoppin 1941 (Norma Miller gets tossed around in a circle and has a Chefs hat on)

Thursday
Feb202014

The Lindy Hop with Frankie Manning - and the Girls Twist

Here a great excerpt of Frankie Manning the Original Innovator and Great Ambassador of the Lindy Hop and the story of the early beginnings.

From the Book "This Thing Called Swing" by Christian Bachelor

 

Monday
Feb172014

The first generation Lindy Hoppers 1920-1930's Shorty George Snowden

"SHORTY" GEORGE SNOWDEN

Parts from Kansas City Lindy Hop Society and Savoy Style

Of the three first generation lindy hoppers, the most noted, and certainly most written about, was Shorty George Snowden. Shorty George was the top dancer at the Savoy from its opening in 1926 to the early 1930s. Barely five feet tall, he was recognized as a comic dance genius. When paired with his most well known partner Big Bea (who towered over him), what resulted were dance steps and patterns that were both wildly entertaining and technically brilliant. While some accounts credit Shorty George with introducing the first break-away pattern, he is most remembered for two things: his signature move, aptly named the Shorty George and giving Lindy Hop its name.
Here is "Shorty" dancing in After Seben in 1929 (3rd Couple) See the transition from the Charleston to the Break Away, the early look and transition into the Lindy Hop.

The Shorty George dance step was a self parody of his already very short stature. This step involved forward motion with acutely bent knees swinging from side to side. This move, or one very similar, is said to have been originally done under the name boogie walks and the Baltimore buzz.

The Dance Style Acquires a Name
While no one disputes Shorty George’s claim to popularizing the Shorty George dance step, the initial naming of Lindy Hop is another matter. Charles Lindbergh completed his non-stop flight from the United States to Europe on May 21, 1927. This was at a time when this dance style was becoming all the rage in Harlem, throughout New York, and up and down the entire East Coast. Now consider two things:

The terms hop and hopping were common vernacular for dance and dancing during that time.

The worldwide reporting of Lindbergh’s feat (akin to the first Moon landing) undoubtedly included some accounts that regarded his flight over the Atlantic Ocean as a hop.

    Snowden is often given credit for giving Lindy Hop its name. As the story goes, there was a charity dance-marathon in New York City in 1928, shortly after Charles Lindbergh's (known as "Lucky  Lindy") triumphant "hop" across the Atlantic. A reporter saw Snowden break away from his partner and improvise a few steps in a style that was popular in Harlem. "What was that!?" he asked. Snowden thought for a few seconds and replied, "I'm doin' the Hop...the Lindy Hop". The name stuck.

Perhaps the final word on this matter should be left to Frankie Manning himself who on this subject is quoted as saying,

" All I can say is that I heard the story from Shorty George himself. The other fellas from that time were standing around listening and they didn’t say ‘Aw, come on Shorty, quit the BS,’ which they would have said if it wasn’t true"

Here is Shorty George Snowden dancing in this rare clip with Big Bea in 1937 in "Ask Uncle Sol"

So ends the first generation of Lindy Hop and the dancers that gave it its original style and name. Throughout the 1930s, a new generation of lindy hoppers emerged. This second generation would go on to introduce Lindy Hop to a worldwide audience during the Golden Era of Lindy Hop Swing.