The Foo Fighters was the first cd I bought but I think this Genesis album was the first cassette tape I purchased on my own. I’d imagine a big part of my choice was due to this video which I found really funny then and still, although for probably different reasons because now it just is goofy.
I’ve never been a good dancer, regardless of how much beer I’ve consumed. It’s always been something I’ve observed at bars, parties, concerts, and really anywhere. I am jealous of people who can actually dance because I feel pretty inadequate while trying to shake a leg next to them. Granted, I think that dancing is good for you regardless of your skill level because you take a few minutes to forget the stress of the world while having some fun and burning some calories. Who knows, maybe you will slide onto a dance floor somewhere and have similar moves to your one true mate in the world. Doubtful, but possible.
Dwight Yoakam is slowly becoming one of my favorite country artists because of the type of music he was playing in the time period, the 1980’s, when country was really in a terrible place.
This post came to me because of a show my band played on Saturday night in the same coastal tourist town my brother had one of his first jobs at a gas station, probably about the same time he drove the Ford LTD Wagon. We had done a show the night before in Portland, Maine at a hipster bowling alley that had gone fairly well, except for the fact that the opening band played longer than we did because of scheduling SNAFUs.
Our expectations were pretty low for a beach town in mid-March with two feet of snow on the ground, but strange things do happen. A sight-seeing trolley, whose existence in these conditions is a mystery in itself, dropped fifty people off so we switched our faster second set with our slower first set and a bonafide dance party ensued. Literally, a conga line formed during “As Fast as You”, which was something we’d never seen before and never will again most likely.
I went to a lot of jam band shows in college and there was a lot of hippie dancing.
The rest of the show was great and we got paid extra because we kept the dance floor doing all night, even to Pink Floyd’s “Money” which is pretty hard to dance to due to its odd 7/8 time signature. It got me thinking about the different way people dance, the various skill levels, and why we dance at all. At our shows, you see a lot of older folks doing a similar dance where they stick their butt out and wave it around while waving their arms out a little. It’s sort of similar to the typical hippie dance where you spin around in a circle with your arms out like a bird or a 747 like my brother compared it to once when we were imitating it in a subway in NYC.
White people dancing to hip hop has always been source of amusement to me. I don’t want to make it a race thing, but from my observation, black people are far better dancers than their white brothers. There are exceptions of course.
I have been to a few hip hop shows, most notably Wu Tang Clan, and most of the people in the crowd do a similar dance. You know the dance, where you jump up and down and occasionally put your arms up and fan the air like you are trying to put out a fire when actually you just are feeling the vibes of the beat. I’ve seen this at parties from high school up to the present time and it feels great. We all do it, even those who detest hip hop, because it’s fun and puts you into party mode. Probably the best part of dancing is the amount of time you spend not thinking about anything except the music, moving, and having a good time. Like the LCD Soundsystem song, you can dance yourself clean.
Music can truly help you dance yourself into feeling fresh and new, or even clean. Of course, when you are all sweaty after, you could actually clean up.
I think if the only thing you get out of dancing is a short vacation from reality, then that’s a good thing. I have read many rock and roll biographies in the last few years and I just finished Cross to Bear by Gregg Allman which details a lot of drug abuse and poor treatment of those around him. The most salient point is that nowadays, if all Gregg can do is give his still numerous concert goers a few hours where they don’t think about the problems in their lives, then he considers it a job well done. Regardless of the complexity of music, isn’t this what we are all looking for in our music? A distraction from the rigors of daily life?
The slam dancing of Primus shows back in the day has given away to much more hippie dancing as they have moved into jammier tunes, but there was a brief time when I enjoyed the mosh pits. Even Les doesn’t like them anymore and calls people out on the mike when they get too rowdy during their current shows.
So I will probably never be a good dancer, but that will not stop me from trying. Whether it be old person dancing, hippie dancing, rap dancing, or even light moshing, it’s fun for everyone involved. Don’t worry if you can’t dance, Phil Collins probably can’t either and that hasn’t stopped him from becoming super famous.