Swing Discussion Boards > Single, Double and Triple Swing

Discussion in 'Swing Discussion Boards' started by Black Sheep, Jul 4, 2003.

  1. Black Sheep

    Black Sheep New Member

    Rickywannabe in a one line comment in yehoodi forum suggested that commentaries be restricted to three lines. Is this the beginning of Nazi type censoring!
    Laconicisms may be good for jokes, limited thinking, avoiding cerebral hemorrhages,
    and elementary thought levels. And I subscribe to one-liners that convey wisdom or useful advice; I personally have some fifty one liners I some day will put in a booklet, but when you read the confusion that is going on to day on the subject of 'TRIPLES', you would think that there needs to be a clarification for some of the would-be pundits of the 'Triple mystic that would be welcomed when coming from 50 years of teaching without ever using the lazy dance teacher's term of 'Triple'.
    At this point, I suggest 'one-line' readers should rest their cerebellar to avoid cerebral anoxia, because I will use several more lines to explain Single, Double, and Triple Swing the way it was taught in the 1950's in all the Hollywood Chain Dance Studios which during those years,
    Los Angeles was the 'Last Bastion' of the Lindy while the rest of the country was on a Cha Cha binge. So those of you who picked up your Swing/Lindy dancing from teachers who picked up their Lindy from the 1940' and 1950's movies like Don't Knock the Rock, a movie in which I do the back
    summersault and the Double Jumping Jack, aerials never duplicated since 1957, please let me share this shocking revelation: "The words, 'Triple, Triple' were never used in the 1950's". How do I know this? For the skeptic laconic one-liners, the answer is, 'Check my web site, www.lindybylanza.com? '
    The Basic rhythm for Lindy/Swing uses only six (6) Quarter beats; a bar
    and a half of music:
    In Single Swing/Lindy, a dancer can change weight only once for each Quarter beat
    and be in the Lindy 'Single Swing' mode;
    In 'Double Lindy' a dancer can tap on the first Quarter beat, step on the second quarter
    beat, tap on the third Quarter beat, step on the fourth Quarter beat, and Rock step
    (2 weight changes) on the 5 & 6 Quarter beats and that is' Double Swing/Lindy;
    Triple Lindy/Swing is when you do your 'Triple, Triple Rock Step' and that is called 'Triple
    But using the words 'triple, triple to teach is misleading, and my one-liner for explaining why, is "Check my Commentary, 'Triple, Triple Little Cipher, How Did You Get so Far'".
    Now I'm the one that needs an aspirin or is it a suppository that cures
    headaches, and which ear does one stick it in for the best results?
    Any one-liner medical advice will be considered!
    Joe Lanza aka Magic Pill drug dealer
  2. d nice

    d nice New Member

    Sorry Joe, but lindy was alive in well in the fifties in good old harlem... as a matter of fact the is wonderful footage of it being done at the Savoy, were it never died out right up to the closing of its doors.

    Funny therew is actual video tape footage of the lindy hop being done in the fifties in the south...

    Interestingly enough the lindy being done in both of these pieces of film uses the eight count swing out as the basic, six count steps simply tossed in for variety and to place the dancers within certain places in the phrasing.

    As to calling the three steps in a swing pattern a triple step being lazy... not at all. As a mnemonic tool it is very useful. The teacher can say step, step, tri, ple-step which places each syllable on a step matching the "quarter" and "sixteenth" notes in the music.

    It is a swing dance the step MUST swing there for the triple must not be divided into three even steps. Just because a teacher is either not skilled enough to execute it or teach it or believes that the explanation will only confuse the student, and they use the word triple step with no explanation or show it incorrctly as being an evenly divided set of steps, does mean the word usage is inappropriate.

    No need to throw the baby out with the bathwater.
  3. MissAlyssa

    MissAlyssa New Member

    I just started to learn triple step and I was wondering if there are any specific techniques to keep in mind while dancing it...
  4. d nice

    d nice New Member

    The key to triple steps in swing dancing is to swing them. Very often they are taught as even beat steps by people who don't understand the form of jazz and jazz dance (authentic/historical not contemporary jazz wich is baswed more off of ballet and modern than the original jazz forms).

    It is often given cha-cha timing, the three steps evenly divided in time"

    The steps infact are more like this:

    NExt you will want to keep your feet under you as a follower. The triple step is done naturally when your first step is placed but your body continues to travel beyond that foot. This "forces" your body to place the second foot right next to the first, so the first foot can take another step to keep the body from falling over.

    There should be a "downward bounce" maintained throughout each quarter beat, sinking into the floor and pushing yourself out into the next beat. This keeps the movement strong, allows rapid change of direction, and helps maintain balance from this "grounding" action. How deep/exagerated the "bounce" (sometimes refered to as a pulse) is will be determined by your individual style (or by the insistance of your instructor) but it must be present, it is absorbed mostly in the knees with some movement in the ankles and the waist. All a downward flex. Don't put the bend in side to side, nor bounce up.
  5. SDsalsaguy

    SDsalsaguy Administrator Staff Member

    Good information d nice but, just as a point of clarification, while social and “club” cha cha may be danced as a triplet, i.e. 4..&..1, in point of fact ballroom cha cha splits as ½, ½, whole timing, i.e. 4.&..1…
  6. DanceMentor

    DanceMentor Administrator

    I have often been taught to place an added emphasis on the off beats:
    one & TWO, three & FOUR, five SIX.
    What is your take on this d nice and SDsalsaguy?
  7. SDsalsaguy

    SDsalsaguy Administrator Staff Member

    From what I know this is the case, i.e. the 2 is the accented beat (via drop action) in Jive.

    The more I've been thinking about it, however, I also wanted to point out that the ½, ½, whole timing I was referencing for ballroom cha cha also aplies to ballroom EC swing. The difference comes in the down-together-side movement d nice described, usind a pendulum like swing of the hips to generate the side step.
  8. msc

    msc New Member

    Hmmm. I always learned it as "One uh Two, Three Uh Four, etc. etc.", i.e., step on the 3/4 beat rather than the 1/2 beat. I haven't done a lot of jive, but it seems that the center pulses up and down more in jive, and the hips swing a little more in ec swing
  9. SDsalsaguy

    SDsalsaguy Administrator Staff Member

    Hiya msc, I'm not sure about this one -- one way or the other. Anyone else have some insight? My only consideration is that if you are correct about using the 1/4 beat (vs. the 1/2 beat), wouldn't it have to be the 1/4 beat on the earlier side, not the later one, i.e. 1e..2, and not 1..a2? To my way of thinking this is the only way to sync with the "little-little-big" (as far as steps) of ballroom EC.

    Definately. The music tempo alone dictates that not as much swing action can take place in Jive. (And the drop action I was mentioning in my response to DanceMentor is, I am sure, an element of the up-down pulse you are noting.)
  10. msc

    msc New Member

    I'm fairly certain it's 1a2, it's just the last action is really, really fast. Swing music follows this rhythm, if you listen closely you can here the "Bah...bahbah" of the percussion. It's a little tricker when you're using the under the body/under the body/stride mechanics, as you suggested, or, worse yet, kick-draw-ball-change. Actually, there's a nice little website at www.dancescape.tv that has some free instructional clips, if you've got the bandwidth to download them. One is by Matthew and Nicole Cutler, going over jive basics, and another is a jive performance by three time world champions Bryan Watson and Carmen.
  11. SDsalsaguy

    SDsalsaguy Administrator Staff Member

    Hmmm, I'm going to have to think this one over a bit more...

    (Note: Bryan & Carmen won their 4th world championship last September.)
  12. d nice

    d nice New Member

    I should have pre-faced my explanation that my dancing is based on the vernacular far more than the ballroom, and my latin knowledge is pretty rudimentry beyond what I see in clubs.

    IF you are dancing to jazz the first step of the triple is a "full" step in both stride and beat while the next two are closer to each other in distance and timing. The relational difference will need to adjust depending on the amount a band swings as well as the tempo of the music. Obviousely if a two beat phrase is one second long (120bpm) it will have more space inbetween each note played (and therefor each step taken) than a two beat phrase that covers a half second (240bpm). Slow songs swing "more" the rhythmic displacement is greater, faster songs are more driving because the tension created by the rhythmic displacement while lessed in the two beat phrase, is increased by the constant "wash".
  13. Pass It On

    Pass It On New Member

    d nice,

    If you were going to clap your hands to a swing song, wouldn't you clap to the "2" and "4" beats? It always seems the 2 and 4 are more accentuated in the music. Does vernacular dance account for this musicality?
  14. SDsalsaguy

    SDsalsaguy Administrator Staff Member

    No problems d nice -- I understood where you were coming from. I just wanted to clarify regarding ballroom vs. club cha cha for those members of the forums who might not have been clear as to the timing difference.
  15. Black Sheep

    Black Sheep New Member

    d nice,
    In my post, I stated that Harlem was the only place in New York where they were still doing Lindy in the 1950's. "It is dangerous to misquote a man with a memory like a bear trap. " J.L.
    2003 a.d..
    Joe Lanza
  16. d nice

    d nice New Member

    "It is dangerous to misquote yourself with a man who can use the quote function." D.S. 2003 a.d..
  17. d nice

    d nice New Member

    Would now be the time to mention that lindy hop was also still be done in DC, Chicago's South side, in Memphis on Beale St., and in West Oakland?

    Naw, probably not.

    Most certainly not time to mention that it was being done in Los Angelos?
  18. MissAlyssa

    MissAlyssa New Member

    I was taught to dance triple step like this

    1 & 2...3 & 4..5..6

    I dunno... :p
  19. Black Sheep

    Black Sheep New Member

    d nice, Check what I said way back in April: Again let me reiterate, " It's dangerous to mis quote a man with a memory like a bear trap".
    To History Buffs,
    In 1940's, the Lindy crowd in Southern California was miniscule compared to millions of Lindy dancers in New York City. The annual Harvest Moon Ball held at Madison Square Garden in New York City was always packed to the rafters for that occasion. There are films that are still available of those awesome contests. The blacks from the Harlem Savoy always won those contests right into the 1950's with their incredible performances.
  20. d nice

    d nice New Member

    Okay Joe, it isn't my responsibility to read everything you have ever written. If you say one thing in April and say MOST of it again in mid July... it is YOUR responsibility to keep the relevant data intact.

    Now what about the other cities I mentioned that still had active lindy hoppers. These are the ones I have actually verified through dancers from the era. I have heard of other cities but have not met any eye witrnesses or seen footage of (such as Dallas and Atlanta).

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