Swing Discussion Boards > Hip Hop Lindy?

Discussion in 'Swing Discussion Boards' started by pygmalion, Dec 6, 2003.

  1. pygmalion

    pygmalion Well-Known Member

    I saw this on another board and was totally shocked. Hip hop lindy? Is it possible/popular to mix elements of other dances in with lindy? What dances? And is that still really lindy or some new evolving dance form? Has anybody seen this done? Seen it taught?
  2. Sagitta

    Sagitta Well-Known Member

    Vince mentioned in the favorite swing moves thread that he mixes up hip hop with WCS. If he doesn't already he just might start doing so now. :)

    Haven't done that much hip hop, myself. :)
  3. Vince A

    Vince A Active Member

    It would still be a WCS . . . just because you mix in another move, say from hip hop, just shows your versatility and personality.

    In one WCS Jack and Jill, whre the music broke into a very slow "up and down" kind of tempo, my brain heard Waltz, and I took my partner right into a Waltz . . . and ended in a dip and brought her out on count 1 just as the music went back to normal beat!

    Speaking of dips . . . they can be done in just about any dance . . . is it still WCS if you dip a follow in a WCS?

    Don't you do check steps in several dances . . . if you do . . . are those still the dances that you intended them to be?

    Chasses are performed in several dances . . . it's a step or a move, not necessarily a titled pattern.
  4. pygmalion

    pygmalion Well-Known Member

    I see your point, Vince. The reason I asked about evolution is because I'm pretty sure there are some swing purists on the line. I'm curious about what really defines a swing dance, and where you draw the line.
  5. Sagitta

    Sagitta Well-Known Member

    I'm definitely not a purist!! I believe in dancing to the music. Limiting oneself to certain steps/moves because that's that is done in one dance is restricting/choking!!
  6. suek

    suek New Member

    For me the "purity" of lindy is in the stance, the rhythm and the basic footwork. It's a vernacular jazz dance, and I see all kinds of jazz steps and footwork being used. It stays pure, IMHO, if it swings.
  7. lindy jihad

    lindy jihad New Member

    that would be me. if its not teh lindy, dont call it teh lindy. you can do it all you want, just dont call it something its not.
  8. Sagitta

    Sagitta Well-Known Member

    I don't!! I just call it dancing. Just like cooking. No names please!! Just sets people for with expectations that may not match what you have. :)
  9. SDsalsaguy

    SDsalsaguy Administrator Staff Member

    I understand lindy jihad's point...I've seen some great performances, for instance, but when close to half a routine is flips and drops and tricks, how is that a "salsa routine"???? :shock: :shock: :shock:

    This really gets at the underlying issue of what constitutes the spirit of the dance. Take Vince's example above…the music, to him, dictated waltz. But there's still a huge difference between doing waltz during an otherwise WCS song and doing waltz and calling it WCS. There's an under girding conceptualization of what is and what isn't true to a dance and it has far less to what you do (just steps as Sagitta says) then in how you do them. All of which is, of course, just the tip of this particular iceberg…
  10. Sagitta

    Sagitta Well-Known Member

    And getting different steps done in the spirit of a particular dance comes with experience. :) A whole dance done to waltz instead of WCS!! I shudder at the thought.
  11. d nice

    d nice New Member

    I've seen it, danced and taught it.

    It is perfectly possible to mix certain elements of one or several dances into another dance... however like in all things there is a good way which keeps the dance "pure" throughout, and one that doesn't.

    In a vernacular jazz dance where your inspiration comes from is all together unimportant... how you execute it is. The Lindy Hop is a vernacular Jazz Dance and so is Hip-Hop. The Lindy Hoppers of old were well known for stealing moves from not just other dances, but other disciplines entirely... but they always made it their own, putting the undeniable mark of lindy hop on it. A move unaltered will nearly always look out of place in a different dance. A rock and Roll aerial uses different hand holds, different timing, and often a completely different aesthetic than a lindy hop aerial. A ballet pirouette is different than a vernacular jazz pirouette.

    It is all about adaption.

    Using hip hop moves to a swing song the moves must be modified to fit the dance.

    Using lindy hop to dance to many forms of hip hop music the whole dance must be modified... meaning it is no longer lindy hop but something new. Not all hip hop requires this change though, there are several styles that use swing rhythms and some even jazz improvisations... which is only natural since hip-hop is a direct descendant of jazz.

    Personally if I'm going to dance to hip-hop, I'd prefer to do Chicago Steppin', but thats just me, thats how I roll.
  12. d nice

    d nice New Member

    This actually inspired my current signature on the Canadian Swingboard Lindyhopper.ca, "Theives In The Temple of Ballroom"
  13. pygmalion

    pygmalion Well-Known Member

    Okay. Then at the risk of sounding ignorant, which is certainly not my intent LOL! What makes a swing a swing? The music? The styling? The posture? Something else?
  14. SDsalsaguy

    SDsalsaguy Administrator Staff Member

    I love it d nice! :D
  15. d nice

    d nice New Member

    Perhaps its the language... "What makes a swing a swing?" I'm not sure what you are asking.

    What makes Swing (the sub-genre of jazz music develop in the late 20's rising to its height f popularty in the late 30's to early 40's) different from other forms of Jazz or other music genres in general?

    - Or -

    What makes music swing (regardless of the genre or sub genre)?

    Perhaps you are asking something else entirely.
  16. pygmalion

    pygmalion Well-Known Member

    You're right. I should have been specific. What I was asking is what makes a swing dance, and swing dance, for example lindy, and not some other dance. If you can mix in elements from anything you want, how do you know when the dance you're doing has ceased to be swing and become something else?

    Although the question about what makes swing music "swing" is intriguing as well. I've heard or read many people talking about music needing to have that swing. What exactly is that swing something in the musical timing, styling and placement of accents, I'm guessing. :?:
  17. Vince A

    Vince A Active Member

    I guess . . . if I walked up to you, offered my hand, and said, "Do you West Coast Swing?" You placed your hand in mine and its off to the dance floor to WCS we go. My intent is to WCS. I if we do anything, other than what is led, this is "play," and we can play until given an indication (a lead, an sometimes an anchor, etc.) to do otherwise. This "play" can be anything - hip hop, moonwalking, etc. Even a Waltz.

    Now, when you can sneak these moves in, in the middle of a simple pattern, say a right side pass with a double turn for the follower, then all the better - and it is done all the time. You an play or mix anything in you want, as long as you don't take away my lead!

    If you hijack me, and take the lead, I'll afford you the same luxury!
  18. d nice

    d nice New Member

    Every dance has some very basic defing elements. I won't go into the others due to the topic of this thread, but I will discuss Lindy Hop.

    Lindy Hop is defined by the eight count swing out. The physical movements used when executing this move dictate the partner interaction, frame, connection, generation and use of momentum, the rhythm of the move, and the relationship with the floor. Any move that maintains these elements is Lindy Hop... regardless of where it was originally derived.

    Now these elements are not static, unbendable, untransmutable and therefor easily shattered. They are flexible, elastic, but ever present. If I want to moonwalk in the middle of a move, it is perfectly possible... the question is am I capable of doing it while maintaing the lion's share of the above elements untouched.

    A swung rhythm can most easily be described as a push and pull in timing of beats. Borrowing from Peter to pay Paul as the saying goes. If we look at a bar of music it is divided into four even parts (4/4 time signature). Four notes filling the four sections... these are quarter notes. There is musical notation that divides the notes into smaller units... eith notes and sixteenth notes. This as far as I'm going to go into composition and musiic theory... Think of a bar in mathmatical terms with fractions and while not exact is easy enough for everyone to understand.

    If I set a metronbome to ticking, it would hit every quarter note with even division until set to do otherwise. If I counted out the numbers I would say 1 2 3 4. Inbetween each number there is space which we could call an "&" so I could count it out 1 & 2 & 3 & 4. This is where most dances operate stepping on a whole number or on the half, and most of todays music endeavors to play within this framework.

    Swing music (and pretty much every form of Jazz, Blues, Gospel etc.) does not. A swing dancer and swing musician will "ignore" the "&" and instead place that note/step closer to the number using an "a" so we could notate it 1 & a2 & a3 & a4. Now I could actually continue to break down the space inbetween out 1 & a2 but I think the idea is understood now, and this is good enough to take it to the next level.

    If my rhythm for lindy hop is Step, Step, Triple Step, Step, Step, Triple Step, it would cover two bars of music (eight whole counts). We would normaly write it or say it as 1, 2, 3 & 4, 5, 6, 7 & 8. HOWEVER... what we dance it as is 1, 2, 3 a4, 5, 6, 7 a8... we aren't actually stepping in the half count this is what "swings" the triple step versus the way it is done in cha-cha.

    This is why a number of purists (both Lindy Hop and West Coast) are saying that the new school "funky" West Coast Swing is not a swing dance/doesn't swing/ is pulling the dance down etc. etc. etc. When you dance to music that does not swing you have a choice dance and force your swung triple in there anyway regardless of what the music is actually doing, or to dance to the rhythms of the music and lose one of the defining elements (possibly the most important defining element) of the dance.

    Personally I have no problem with the continued development/metamorphasis of one dance spawning another, I love it as a matter of fact. I think it is important though that the original character of a dance be preserved. I'd hate for what was called West Coast Swing ten years ago to disappear. Grow, evolve, reach its full potential yes... but the discarding of certain elements that originally defined the dance will likely lead to the death of the original form.
  19. Vince A

    Vince A Active Member

    Thanks Damon . . . very, very wel written.

    I too, would hate to see the WCS of ten years ago disappear . . . as when true "swing" music comes on, that is what I feel and dance, versus what I do if a "funky" song comes on. Same dance, but looks entirely different because it is preceived by the brain as entirely different.
  20. pygmalion

    pygmalion Well-Known Member

    Perfectly clear to me, dnice. At least I think so. You're talking about using tripets, which sort of stretches the triple step over a duplet rhythm structure. Rather than the "squared off" timing of tradition syncopation. Yes?

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