General Dance Discussion > Why is 4-count Hustle looked down on?

Discussion in 'General Dance Discussion' started by fmill019, Jul 30, 2016.

  1. fmill019

    fmill019 Member

    I understand that 3-count is the proper way to do it, and that 1/2-beat-break step on the "&" really makes the dance look nice and "salsa-ish".

    But Hustle is practically a dead dance with hardly any enthusiastic newcomers. Trying to get people to step 4 times on 3 beats of music certainly won't help. I can relate as a beginner watching other beginners struggle and don't know why 4-count hustle (vastly more intuitive) isn't promoted or danced more.

    In fact, from what I've heard from the NY scene, it's looked down on.


    It seems to me that if Hustle wishes to appeal to the current generation, they are going to have to simplify it down more for your average millennial of today.
  2. MaggieMoves

    MaggieMoves Well-Known Member

    For what it's worth, I did learn hustle on the 4-count, and quickly changed to the 3-count version because of this. We only call it a 4-count just to make the steps more simplified... as there are 4 steps no matter what the count. Most newbies lack the musicality to know how to implement the 3-count version until they do it.

    I'm not particularly interested in hustle though because it just doesn't seem to be that relevant of a dance anymore. I've heard some people calling a "new" version of the hustle "nuhustle," but it really is just the same dance to new music with some tricks thrown in.

    All dances seem to go through ups and downs. Swing in the 90s was enormous. Salsa is still enjoying a similar movement. All it takes is one reference to pop culture which could turn the tide of things.
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  3. tangotime

    tangotime Well-Known Member

    First.. " Proper "way.. It's only one of 3 styles, the original being a Merengue styled dance, that transitioned into Latin Hustle, often called 6 count ( what the NY scene preferred) , and that, is what preceeded 3 count
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  4. Mr 4 styles

    Mr 4 styles Well-Known Member

    I learned six count Hustle before three count first one learned the hard way. In da cllluuuubbb
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  5. PaulBunyon

    PaulBunyon Active Member

    I'm "that age" that I learned hustle because it was the big pop culture boom of my day. It wasn't even called Hustle when I learned it and it's what started me on the journey to partner dancing that has stuck with me all these years. Self taught by watching Saturday Night Fever and Dance Fever on TV every night. Different counts and styles were completely lost on me at the time. In hindsight it was mostly 3 count that I picked up. I'm still not informed enough to know what distinguishes 3 count from 6 count.

    These days with "Hustle" firmly rooted in my studios rotation of group classes I see them teaching both 4 count and 3 count. If the class is marketed as beginner, the entire class is 4 count. If it's marketed mixed or intermediate it's either entirely 3 count or transitions from 4 to 3 in the first 1/3 of instruction. (when the teach it they count to six which might be part of my confusion).

    I haven't been in too many clubs lately. The ones I see advertising with dancing as an element, it's Salsa, Salsa, Salsa.

    I have a Millennial living in my back bedroom (who calls me Dad) who seems to have no interest or cultural driver to any kind of partner dancing. My sample size is small so certainly not reliable. There's a big weekly Salsa event that moves into the space immediately following my usual weekly Ballroom dance, so we all see each as we swap our shoes and such. They all seem about 10 years older than my daughter. My layman's impression is that Salsa is on the downslide in cultural popularity (only the first Millennials caught it) and no form of partner has moved in to take it's place with the late Millennials like my daughter.

    I don't think it's the count that knocks Hustle out for popularity among the youngest generations, it's the lack of a pop cultural driver. If you want to bring Hustle back I would try to convince Channing Tatum or Derek Hough that's it's time for a re-boot of Saturday Night Fever and that they need to get Selena Gomez, Elle Goulding, and Sam Harris to cut some tracks for it.
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  6. RiseNFall

    RiseNFall Well-Known Member

    I have a Millennial living in one of my bedrooms who calls me Mom. He has taken a few dance lessons with girlfriends, but no real interest. He's transferring to a college that has a good ballroom team and he flat refuses to consider joining it. :p
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  7. DerekWeb

    DerekWeb Well-Known Member

    It ain't dead. California mix socials are big in the NY/NJ area and growing.
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  8. Partner Dancer

    Partner Dancer Well-Known Member

    Well, that's the case with most "established" circles, as the dance has developed over the

    Because it'll be a "different" dance, just like doing Merengue verses Salsa (or Salsa on 1
    verses Salsa on 2).

    In Saturday Night Fever (70s), the Disco dancing uses mostly 4-count stuff, which makes it
    closer to smoothed-out Merengue than 3-count Hustle.

    It's just not the dance _they_ do. Sometimes, it even gets even more riduculous, as some
    "Hustle" dancers won't dance with other (3-count) dancers who don't do it "their way."
    (usually ones who aren't really that good anyway, as these dancers aren't that adaptive).

    Would you expect to go to a Hustle dance/event and do Waltz?

    Then it'll be called West Coast Swing. In recent years, in the expansion of WCS, more
    "Hustle" music is played to be danced as WCS, and WCS has abandoned its claim to
    fame for using (dead) anchors, concocting alls sorts of "anchors" (drifting, etc.) and
    coasting moves (rock and go, etc.), which are no more than methods to get
    continuous/continual movement, ala Hustle.

    In the mean time, Hustle has been "dummed down" quite a bit to include more
    "hold/time/walking" steps so it wouldn't be so physically demanding (mostly on

    Now, for the merits of (3-count) Hustle...

    Besides IS VW (before all the "dummed down" holding/canter steps that makes it
    AS), Hustle is the only dance with continuous/continual flow as its foundation.
    This makes it very physically demanding, as any waste of energy (such as
    poor turn technique) leads to eventual exhaustion. Just like VW, it's difficult to
    dance several Hustles back-to-back, which makes it not particularly suitable
    for social dancing (since social dancing is inherently sloppy, and hence needs
    to be forgiving [like WCS]).

    But, Hustle teaches one to be efficient in one's movements. The dynamics and
    fluidity of Hustle (and VW) are exceptional, in that one does relatively simple
    "steps/figures" but must achieve good timing/position/balance to overcome
    the physical challenges. It teaches one to minimize inter-partner forces (light
    connection) so the dance can be pleasant.

    Unfortunately, just like VW, many dancers who do Hustle just do it as a "fun"
    dance, and don't come anywhere close to decent technique to make it
    enjoyable. The teaching of Hustle leaves a lot to be desired as well.
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  9. Loki

    Loki Well-Known Member

    Most studios here offer a Bronze level hustle in group class rotation. Tends to be 4 count. Another in Chicago proper only teaches syncopated and offers several different levels / workshops. Not as ubiquitous as foxtrots at socials, but hustles do get played.
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  10. fmill019

    fmill019 Member

    Sorry for the late reply, everyone! Just finished finals this week!
  11. fmill019

    fmill019 Member

    Hmmm... do you feel the relevance of Hustle will ever come back?

    Thanks for your post!
  12. fmill019

    fmill019 Member

    Now... THIS is interesting!

    1.) So-- the first "Hustle" was the merenge just danced to modern music, with the same (1-2, 1-2, 1-2) step, closed hold and latin hip motion of today's merengue? So cool!

    2.) Did the 6-count Hustle look radically different to today's 3-count Hustle? Did it still have the "&123" back-brake of today's 3-count to it?

    Thank you so much for your post! Hope to hear from you again!
  13. fmill019

    fmill019 Member

    Wow! This is the second time I've heard of the 6-count today! So, since you learned it right then and there in a club setting instead of in a class, I take it that 6-count must have been pretty simple for a beginner to pick up?

    Is there a way you could tell me what the 6-count looked like or what it consisted of?

    And between the 3-count and the 6-count, which one do you prefer?
    Thank you for your post!
  14. fmill019

    fmill019 Member

    Makes sense! One would think that with the popularity of the EDM scene today that Hustle's come back would be very strong.

    I myself can see that Salsa is on the decline in popularity also compared to the earlier 21st century years when it boomed.

    Also do you know of where I can find the footage of those old Saturday Night Fever, Dance Fever Hustle footage?

    Thanks for your post!
  15. fmill019

    fmill019 Member

    That is great to hear that it is growing!! Down here in South Florida, will sometimes get some people drifting in and out, but it sure could be doing a heck of a lot better than what it is currently!
  16. tangotime

    tangotime Well-Known Member

    Latin Hustle basic, was/is danced on , more of a horizontal plane .The point of this , was to make a distinction between it, and WCS ,in not only timing but construction .

    if you would like to know what style of music, then this album was on top of every DJs list .... " Voyage "

    Bee Gees were very popular, and Donna Summer, among others .
    I still have a good Hustle "library " for DJing , if I ever get a call .
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  17. fmill019

    fmill019 Member

    This is interesting, Partner Dancer! I have so many questions :D...Sorry in advanced.

    Wow! This is really really interesting and it echoes exactly what tangotime up above said. I keep trying to picture the merengue (the two-step dance) looking similar to Hustle but can't really see it. Would it be more like a "back-and-forth" merengue with a break-step on the "1"? If so-- then I am starting to see it.

    That is a really interesting take-away and visual!

    Wow... so there are multiple 3-count Hustle styles?

    Okay. So WCS has changed itself to be more adaptive to Hustle by simplifying their repertoire somewhat?
    Can you elaborate a bit more on the "hold/time/walking" steps? Are you referring to the NY Walk steps? And are you saying this is preferable because the spinning and constant movement of Hustle is too much for a follower throughout a whole song? Sorry, I am not trying to be a dunce, I'm just trying to clarify this in my brain as a 1-month beginner myself to this dance.

    This is awesome information! So minimizing of one's movement in the slot with the partner, light connection but perpetual movement with great balance is a must? I think I understand.

    Do you think the "physical demand" of Hustle is something that will present problems in the future for those who would like to dance to modern music but a little bit more relaxed? I have heard of followers in my class complain of feeling like they've been through a washing machine after dancing with some guys, due to the excessive amount of turns.

    I particularly like how in Salsa-- although they do a lot of turns today also-- they do that closed "Cuban hold" to let the dance slow down and (I guess you could say) "breathe" a little more before going into the next sequence of turns. Do you ever see Hustle doing something similar one day?
  18. fmill019

    fmill019 Member

    Sorry for asking more questions but what do you mean by "more of a horizontal plane"?
  19. Mr 4 styles

    Mr 4 styles Well-Known Member

    fmill019 if you are ever in florida you should take class from billy fajardo and katie marlow alternatively go to their IHSC congress in may in south beach its awesome
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  20. Mr 4 styles

    Mr 4 styles Well-Known Member

    3 count can be ....and one two three or two and three ( michigan hustle I'm told)
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