Swing Discussion Boards > stink at east coast swing

Discussion in 'Swing Discussion Boards' started by fascination, Feb 12, 2006.

  1. Medira

    Medira New Member

    Cross your fingers that I get my cheque as promised this Friday so I can book a flight out there for the following weekend. Maybe I can help you find the feeling you're looking for? (I can lead the basics, too...)
  2. Diavo

    Diavo New Member

    (Wow this thread took off.) Sorry, I seriously did not mean to come across negatively! I was just laying things out, with honest intention to help. =)

    As was said on pg2, I agree that swing being Fun is also my main attraction to this dance (which is why I like it fast). Perhaps listening to different tempos and styles (classic old swing vs electrified neoswing) should help in deciding what you like best; and can help anyone find what they like about the dance consequently.

  3. hepcat

    hepcat Member

    I don't think it's necessarily true that a like for tango would lead you to a like for WCS over lindy. I very much like Argentine Tango and Lindy and don't like WCS. WCS just doesn't have the connection inherent in all other swing dances that I strive. She may like WCS more given the upright frame you mentioned. I just don't think it's necessarily a valid conclusion (i.e. a like for tango = a like for WCS). If WCS serves as a bridge to the rest of swing for someone like fascination, then I'd say give it a shot, but personally uprightness and J-leads in WCS turn me off. I like the stretch and low-downness of lindy.
  4. leftfeetnyc

    leftfeetnyc New Member

    Based on what she described as her personality I think WCS is more up her alley. I do both Lindy and WCS, I've been around the cultures a while, personal opinion. To each his own.

    That said, I don't see a significant difference in connection between the two swing styles. Maybe location based, but I'm not getting a constant influx of J-leads and have found solid deep connection repeatedly.

    I get the impression that many people go into WCS being told to be "Light" and it translates negatively into how they go about connecting. A good WCS connection is still going to have a rubberband feel but a lot of people trying the dance for the first time (that I've run into) seem to be afraid of letting themselves get so deep into the connection. They see a floaty looking dance and try to emulate it visually rather than physically. Maybe you've run into those dancers mostly?
  5. SuperEdo

    SuperEdo New Member

    East Coast Swing... blech. It's cool that people enjoy it, but when I started learning to dance, I went straight for the lindy. I find no joy in East Coast Swing. I know also in some ballroom environments, East Coast is taught the same way other ballroom dances would be taught. I don't think that's necessarily fitting.

    That said, you can't get around your own personality. I'm goofy, try to be playful, and like to bounce, so swing is for me.
  6. elegance

    elegance New Member

    Well, (from a ballroom perspective) I can answer for jive...I wish I knew more about swing, I've only danced it socially, and it seems like a lot of the technique would be similar, but then, I don't know the finer points.
    Do you dance jive at all? Do you feel the same way about it as swing or is it specifically swing you can't get into.
    What I like most about it is: happy + bouncy, it gets me on a high (which from what you said seems like you don't relate to so much)
    But the other thing I like is really getting into knees, hips, ankles, feeling the floor, feeling the strong connection to my partner, and the cool shaping. I guess the straight basic, if you're just concentrating on footwork, can be pretty boring. Maybe really getting into some of the other elements? Or maybe practicing to a song that you really like?
  7. It's Wonderful

    It's Wonderful New Member

    Just a thought - but if you're thinking of Ballroom competition swing (in amer. rythym?) you might be better off in the Ballroom forum. Swing dancers in this forum are thinking of more "pure" forms of Swing, danced socially and in Swing-specific comps.
  8. Indiana_Jay

    Indiana_Jay Active Member

    Clarification mode:
    I have a hunch that some in this forum don't realize that my friend Fascination's concern regards performing the ballroom variety of ECS in a ballroom competition as one of the American Rhytm dances she must do. She's already registered for the heat and will dance the ECS and (I think) hopes for any inspiration the swing crowd can provide to help her dance the ECS as well as possible. One could argue that she shouldn't have signed up for American Rhythm if she doesn't "connect" with ECS, but I admire her courage!

    -IJ (another ballroom type)
  9. DizzyDancer

    DizzyDancer New Member

    Indeed, the ballroom forum might be better. We haven't heard from anyone yet who actually likes ballroom ECS.

    I started learning swing in a social ballroom setting, and I only kinda liked it at first. Then one day it clicked for me and I started to love it. I later found out that what had happened was that I had started doing it lindy style. Not that I had learned any lindy yet. It just sort of happened, and it felt good.

    I still haven't really learned proper ballroom ecs technique. I love ballroom and I love swing. But when they get together it just doesn't work for me. Slow lindy is so sexy, and fast lindy is so wild, but ballroom swing and jive I just find kind of goofy. I have been wondering why nobody does american rhythm. Maybe this explains it. The only advice I can give on that is to find some music that really inspires you to practice to. (But then, I remember being in a foxtrot class and the music really inspiring me to want to do lindy, so it might not work. But it's worth a shot.)
  10. hepcat

    hepcat Member

    You might be right. I defer. I just don't know enough about WCS and it appears my experience with westies has been limited to the novice variety. Still though, it is upright and they also seem to put their arms behind their backs rather frequently/easily (like salsa) - something that to me would constitute a broken frame. I'd expect a return of energy and instead get a loose arm behind the back. I guess I just don't know what to expect the follow to do with my leads. I've done lindy with some westie follows and they always seem surprised how much they enjoy it. Too bad the scenes generally don't mix.
  11. DWise1

    DWise1 Well-Known Member

    You have it exactly right! If it's sexy swing you're looking for, then try West Coast Swing.

    [disclaimer: reply written before wading through the rest of the thread]
  12. hepcat

    hepcat Member

    I just don't see how WCS is sexy. It looks stiff, dainty, and somewhat goofy to me with an impersonal connection. Do you have some clips you can refer me to so I can see what you're talking about? I'd like to see what it looks like when it's done well. I'm trying to keep an open mind here, but it's hard based on what little I've seen.

  13. alemana

    alemana New Member

    people, people. if you dance the Rhythm style in ballroom, ballroom-style e.c. swing is a required dance. switching to WCS or lindy or whatever isn't an option.
  14. DWise1

    DWise1 Well-Known Member

    It's in the stylin' that the lady can do. A lot of the moves give her plenty of opportunity to throw in syncopated footwork as well as slinky bodywork (eg, body rolls, body waves -- eg, one hip roll that our instructor calls something like "cleaning the peanut butter off the rim of the jar", what a visual [reminds me of an old Redd Foxx joke that I cannot repeat, but think of something that sticks to the roof of your mouth]). And there are a lot of opportunities for close, potentially flirtatous interaction, especially as the guy's skill level increases. It seems to me that there's a fair amount of crossing-over by dancers between salsa and WCS; my dance buddy is a veteran salsera who tried Lindy but fell in love with WCS the moment she saw it being danced.

    I don't know any video clips to refer you to, since most of what I've seen has been in person. But there is an incredible difference between seeing it danced by intermediate dancers (such as myself) and advanced dancers.

    BTW, I dance both Lindy and WCS and, even though I like WCS and feel rather comfortable dancing it and find Lindy much more challenging, I do have more fun and more musicality with Lindy, having gone out and danced it more. And even though she loves salsa and WCS, my dance buddy also craves getting at least one ECS dance each time we go out.
  15. DWise1

    DWise1 Well-Known Member

    Point taken from the start -- by me at least and I'm sure by most of the rest.

    In my case, all of my dancing has always been for learning and developing a social skill (as well as for the associated socializing and fun) and never for competition. So competition concerns are foreign to me, though I can have an academic understanding and appreciation for them.
  16. alemana

    alemana New Member

    but all i'm saying is, if a person comes on here and says "i can't dance X" but it's a given that they HAVE to dance X, it doesn't make sense to say "well try Y, you might like it better."
  17. hepcat

    hepcat Member

    I'm not sure then that pure swing dancers are going to be able to give much meaningful feedback, as it appears that ballroom style anything is going to be a completely different beast than the pure version. I'm actually somewhat surprised there IS a ballroom style ECS. I'd have thought they'd pick a more versatile form of swing to convert to a ballroom form.
  18. leftfeetnyc

    leftfeetnyc New Member

    Mind you these first ones are all routines. So they have a much different look and feel than social dancing: Jordan &
    Tatiana at Swing Diego 2005 Parker & Jessica at Swing Diego 2005 Jason & Katie 2004 Swing Diego (primarily in open...I wish I had their 2005 routine as it was mostly closed position with Houston Whip influence and just amazing)

    Here's a social dance competition (random drawing of partners and music, Champion partners Jordan & Tatiana happened to draw one another)
    http://www.jordantatianaswing.com/videos/boston_tea_party.wmv They dance two songs on this clip and the volume of the first isn't great...turn the speakers up.

    {broken link removed} Myles & Tessa at a social comp. (all improvised dancing)

    I can dig up better impromptu/social dancing clips later.
  19. alemana

    alemana New Member

    i agree utterly. i dance ballroom style swing and would never go to a social swing lesson or social for inspiration. but that's just my learning style - some other people may feel differently. some ballroom mambo dancers *do* keep up on the social salsa scene for vibes/inspiration/moves - some do not. depends on you.
  20. skwiggy

    skwiggy Well-Known Member

    If you can't find the "fun-sexy" in your personality, then I say you dance it with what you do have. If you relate more to "elegant-sexy", then dance ECS elegantly, and give it a style all your own. Then at least you can enjoy yourself.

    In the long run, it will probably help your competitive results to try to learn to love being "fun-sexy". But in the short term, if you're just looking for a way to get through this competition and enjoy yourself, then I say you just dance it however it feels good to you.

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