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tackieannie
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#61 Post by tackieannie » Mon Jan 26, 2004 5:09 pm

this is turning into a real nice discussion and it brought up a question...

it's based off of what Mike said about how a live band can teach dancers and also how yall have commented on the the time and effort AND MONEY that goes into get a "good" band for the dancers....

anyway... I just remember hearing about how the band plays for the dancers...

so my question... how many bands out do you truely think have the goal in mind of playing for the dancer? and not just any ole' band, blues bands, r&b bands and the swing bands that pop up at events... do they truely have the dancer in mind when they play their music?

discuss... (maybe this shoudl have been a whole new thread... but oh well)

julius
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#62 Post by julius » Mon Jan 26, 2004 5:19 pm

i think a problem is that many bands have a goal of playing for the dancers but have little idea what the dancers want. and then there are bands that give the dancers exactly what they want. (if you catch my drift.)

The Eddie Reed Orchestra in days gone by was awesome. I hear good things about Peter Davis and Lindy Hop Heaven (?). Jonathan Stout's Big Band. hmm...thought provoking question.

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gatorgal
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#63 Post by gatorgal » Mon Jan 26, 2004 5:24 pm

tackieannie wrote: so my question... how many bands out do you truely think have the goal in mind of playing for the dancer?
Just had a mini conversation about this with my friend Karen, who sang for our exchange this year.

Her answer would be "not many".

She says musicians who dance (like her) have an added edge when it comes to playing for dancers. She says most musicians have an inaccurate idea of what swing dancers want and what to play. The musicians she gathered for her band were pleasantly surprised with what the dancers wanted to hear, and with the feedback and support they received. They loved and would do it again in a second.

But that's during an exchange... just one point of view.

Tina 8)

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gatorgal
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#64 Post by gatorgal » Mon Jan 26, 2004 5:25 pm

julius wrote: I hear good things about Peter Davis and Lindy Hop Heaven (?)
I've only heard them once (live) but I dug them.

Tina 8)

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#65 Post by Nate Dogg » Mon Jan 26, 2004 5:29 pm

gatorgal wrote:
tackieannie wrote: so my question... how many bands out do you truely think have the goal in mind of playing for the dancer?
Just had a mini conversation about this with my friend Karen, who sang for our exchange this year.

Her answer would be "not many".

She says musicians who dance (like her) have an added edge when it comes to playing for dancers. She says most musicians have an inaccurate idea of what swing dancers want and what to play. The musicians she gathered for her band were pleasantly surprised with what the dancers wanted to hear, and with the feedback and support they received. They loved and would do it again in a second.

But that's during an exchange... just one point of view.

Tina 8)
Yeah, I really appreciated how much Karen changed for the dancers once I listened to her CD. Her CD was not a swing dance CD at all. But, based on the show I saw her do, you would have thought swing music was what she always played all the time.

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#66 Post by mousethief » Mon Jan 26, 2004 6:14 pm

Ohmanohmanohman...

Not another "Dancers should micro-manage musicians" thread. For the last Dallas exchange, we hired the late Big Al Dupree. I did it because he was just what we wanted; he was jazz history in Dallas, he was articulate, he was fun as hell. But I selected him because he would swing.

Other than that, I never requested anything out of him and when they broke into a latin jazz piece, man, the whole place lit up with people doing cha cha. It was kick ass.

Kalman

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wheresmygravy
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#67 Post by wheresmygravy » Mon Jan 26, 2004 6:21 pm

This is probably not in direct line with the question, but we have one jazz quartet (James Gilyard, Shelly Carroll, Arlington Jones, Andrew Griffith)that plays occasionally at one of our society dances. I have had conversations with each of them about how they like to watch the advanced dancers interpret their music and will often do almost a 'call - response' with us while we are dancing. Much like we may improvise to what they are playing, they will improvise to what we are dancing.

I also have had experiences with student musicians from North Texas Univ, which has a fantastic jazz department, that they don't like playing those 'old, tired' swing numbers and prefer more modern jazz. We had that problem with hiring a big band with predominantly these musicians.

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djstarr
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#68 Post by djstarr » Tue Jan 27, 2004 2:02 am

We have some jazz groups here where some of the musicians are dancers; one is called "Zazou"; they play a nice variety of Parisian gypsy jazz and have started tailoring some sets to dancers; it took them a couple of trys to zone in on tempos.

The other group played tonight - "Bird Breathes Fire"; they played at our informal Monday dance and had someone there recording them; they certainly fed off the dancer's energy and they were great to dance to.

We also have been going out to the New Orleans Cafe and dancing to the Ham Carson Quartet -- they play a variety of hot jazz and blues; Ham, who plays clarinet, studied with Omer Simeon; the bass player played with Count Basie and also one of Louis Armstrong's All Star bands in the 60's. They have had a weekly gig at the New Orleans Cafe for 15 years, and they are really enjoying playing for dancers -- they keep telling us to come back. We are starting to work on the Century to hire them for a dance, I think it would be awesome.

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Lawrence
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#69 Post by Lawrence » Tue Jan 27, 2004 2:29 am

kalman wrote:
gatorgal wrote:She says musicians who dance (like her) have an added edge when it comes to playing for dancers. She says most musicians have an inaccurate idea of what swing dancers want and what to play. The musicians she gathered for her band were pleasantly surprised with what the dancers wanted to hear, and with the feedback and support they received. They loved and would do it again in a second.
Ohmanohmanohman...

Not another "Dancers should micro-manage musicians" thread.
If you must put it in those demeaning terms, dancers (who know what they are doing) almost MUST "micromanage" musicians so they don't play, for instance, "Sing, Sing, Sing" repeatedly. Otherwise, it's more happenstance whether they deliver what "we" want. Same thing with non-Lindy Hop DJs who spin at weddings and bar mitzvahs: they would SUCK if they were unleashed upon Lindy Hop events without any guidance!!

Again, the ONLY flack I got FROM THE MUSICIANS out of "micromanaging" the Austin Exchange bands was over my ardent insistence that they NOT play "Sing, Sing, Sing." I got a lot of flack HERE from non-musicians who mistakenly speculated that the musicians would be offended, but I had only one brief, professional argument with the actual musicians during the entire planning. Many of the musicians had played in sloppy, lounge-music or Neo-crap Swing bands for the Austin scene. All of my advice and guidance was very much appreciated and led them to enjoy playing for the Austin Exchange more than they enjoyed playing for any other dance. And it made the bands far more enjoyable for the dancers, too.

Eddie Reed coincidences are far more rare than less-than stellar bands of musicians who still think it is 1996 and that "Jump Jive and Wail" is the ideal Swing song. Moreover, I seriously doubt that Barbara Morrison, Dean Mora, Eddie Reed, and Junior Mance don't talk to the dancers to get that guidance, themselves....
Lawrence Page
Austin Lindy Hop
http://www.AustinLindy.com

julius
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#70 Post by julius » Tue Jan 27, 2004 11:32 am

ahahah. kalman is signifying.

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Swifty
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#71 Post by Swifty » Tue Jan 27, 2004 12:38 pm

Lawrence wrote:Moreover, I seriously doubt that Barbara Morrison, Dean Mora, Eddie Reed, and Junior Mance don't talk to the dancers to get that guidance, themselves....
I don't know whether they do or not, but even if they do, this is still very, very different than being told what to play and how to play it.

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#72 Post by mousethief » Tue Jan 27, 2004 12:45 pm

julius wrote:ahahah. kalman is signifying.
Like a monkey.

Kalman

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#73 Post by mousethief » Tue Jan 27, 2004 3:44 pm

Lawrence wrote:
kalman wrote: Ohmanohmanohman...

Not another "Dancers should micro-manage musicians" thread.
If you must put it in those demeaning terms, dancers (who know what they are doing)
Says who?

Kalman
Last edited by mousethief on Wed Jan 28, 2004 8:16 am, edited 1 time in total.
"The cause of reform is hurt, not helped, when an activist makes an idiotic suggestion."

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gatorgal
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#74 Post by gatorgal » Tue Jan 27, 2004 4:02 pm

mousethief and Lawrence - just a woman thing here... I stopped being involved in your conversation a long time ago. So, stop quoting me! :)

You boys can go back to your regularly scheduled debate.

Tina 8)

mousethief
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#75 Post by mousethief » Wed Jan 28, 2004 8:16 am

gatorgal wrote:mousethief and Lawrence - just a woman thing here... I stopped being involved in your conversation a long time ago. So, stop quoting me! :)

You boys can go back to your regularly scheduled debate.

Tina 8)
Better?

Kalman
"The cause of reform is hurt, not helped, when an activist makes an idiotic suggestion."

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