Cab Calloway: Swing Dance

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A scene of glitz and glamour, with flappers twirling and trumpets blaring is often what comes to mind when thinking of swing dancing. Or, perhaps one thinks of a soldier and his sweetheart reconnecting after the war on the dance floor. No matter what one pictures, it is very likely that everyone is familiar with swing dancing in some sense. This idea speaks to just how popular swing is and how it has survived the test of time. Swing dancing has a very unique history and way of development that has allowed it to still be danced often today.
Some view the beginning of the swing era as when Louis Armstrong and his unique, swung, jazzy trumpet style became popular. Others, view the start as when the first Lindy Hop was ever danced. Either way,
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This dance also had a six beat variation and was introduced by Cab Calloway in the 1930’s by his song entitled, Jitterbug. Swing dancing in the form of the Jitterbug and the Lindy Hop became very prevalent in movies during the late 1930s, which further increased its popularity. Proving swing’s growing legitimacy as a dance, the Harvest Moon Ball added competitions for the Lindy Hop and the Jitterbug to their roster in 1938. Despite all this popularity and inclusion of these dances in contests, dance teachers viewed swing as simply a fad caused by the economic distress of the war. Eventually, though, the survival of swing until the 40s forced teachers to recognize it as a dance and many began teaching it in 1942. Though there was a brief part of history through the 80s and 90s where partner dancing became less popular and their was a gap in the popularity of swing dancing, it has managed to survive all this time and is still danced often…show more content…
During this time there was great stress in the country and a great economic depression immediately following it as well. While swing was a popular form of escapism from the turmoil, in the years after many people did not want to swing because it reminded the American people of this hard time. During the 1950s, though, swing dancing was popular on television shows. Many shows chose to feature big celebrities like Elvis and Little Richard; which encouraged a popularity of swing dancing amongst teens. In the 1960s the creation of the Twist, a dance one can do without a partner, diminished the popularity of swing as well as partner dancing in general. It seemed as though the survival of swing dancing was doomed. In the 1980s, however, there was a swing revival. Pop music of this time began reintroducing brass instruments of older times. Also, electric blues was extremely popular because of the movie, The Blues Brothers. Swing rhythms were revived and a neo-swing era began. Though this new era only lasted until around 2000, swing dancing exists rather prominently

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