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What is that magic in a track that makes you want to dance?

 
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Southern Jiver
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 29, 2010 11:50 am    Post subject: What is that magic in a track that makes you want to dance? Reply with quote

Some tracks played at Jive Freestyles have that ability to have you leaping out of your chair and grabbing the nearest partner onto the the dancefloor. Other tracks have exactly the opposite ability. This could well be a personal choice, although it seems that some tracks have a universal appeal. But what is it? Is it the artist? Many people jump up at just a hint of a Michael Buble track. Is it the beat? That's tricky because some faster tracks are "must dance" tracks while others at the same speed seem to clear the floor. Likewise, some much slower tracks, like "Spotlight" by Jennifer Hudson or "Lady Soul" by The Temptations seem to cause a rush for the floor while others at the same speed don't. Is it the energy provided by the track? Some tracks just seem to resonate energy through you so that dancing becomes effortless while others just seem to drag the energy out of you and make dancing like wading through treacle. Is it the format of the track? Is it the arrangement of the breaks etc? Is it the variety of sounds? Is it the complexity? Is it the vocals? Is it the genre? Is it a combination of all of the above? It would be interesting to hear what other people think.
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Steve
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 29, 2010 4:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

For me and only me Smile

For dancing, what the song 'has' is of little importance to me in itself. Without over-egging it to much cos I don't claim to be Mr. Musicality, what's important is what I can do with the song whilst I am dancing.

I remember when I was a beginner, a beat was all I needed and plenty enough to work with Smile. These days my preferred requirements have changed a bit.

For example, I don't like just going thru my moves repertoire. I do like songs with just the odd break or two, or a change in tempo, just something... Something that requires more than just going thru the motions of a few 'moves' to do the song justice.
Likewise, a song could be too challenging, something my skills cannot match. Something I find personally 'undanceable'.
So it's gotta be in the middle. Not too challenging to do it justice, but with enough in it that I have something to work with.

So a jump upable song fits what I want to do whilst dancing. Another way of putting it would be to say that whatever dance skills I happen to have, the song uses them all to the fullest without going too far.

Additionally it must suit my style. My style is not bouncy bouncy thump thump so smoother songs will always be more jump upable Smile.

Over and above that, new tracks and overplayed tracks very rarely provide enjoyable dance tracks for me. I like familiar music. Music that isn't overplayed, but where I am familiar with what the song offers.



So, songs that make me jump up and grab a partner...
Familiar, not unknown or overplayed.
Suit my style.
Has something which I can try and do justice on the dance floor and when I come off the dance floor, if I'm lucky I'm thinking, "Yeah, I nailed that!" Smile.


It gets even more complicated tho.
For me, different partners can change which songs are 'jump upable' as well Smile.
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Southern Jiver
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 29, 2010 4:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I like your answer, Steve, although I'm not sure how much you were applying it to the Jive side of your dancing, and yes, that probably applies to more than just you. However, it doesn't explain why a track such as "No Speak Americano", to my mind a horrible track, causes an instant dancefloor rush while other tracks which I consider excellent to dance to like Jools Holland's "Fat Fred" don't have that effect.
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TeeDee
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 31, 2010 1:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Southern Jiver wrote:
...However, it doesn't explain why a track such as "No Speak Americano", to my mind a horrible track, causes an instant dancefloor rush...


Sj, Have you tried dancing to "No Speak Americano" ?

I found it different and couldn't decide if I liked it or not after hearing it on the radio. After dancing to it... Love it..!!! It is such good fun.

I remember asking my DJ about it:

Me: "Have you heard the Speak Americano" track they've been playing on the radio? Not sure if I like it or not"

DJ: "Oh, no! Not that one?! Oh dear, it's awful..!!!" Followed by: "Is that a request then? Damn, that means I'll have to get it"

The next week he did played it and we both hit the floor. Both with HUGE smiles all the way through. Afterwards he was like an excited school boy who's just discovered his Mum's chocolate stash:

DJ: "Wow! that was amazing! Such good fun to dance to"

It is now a firm favourite down here and, I suspect, will take quite a while to go away...

Anyway. In theme with your thread, SJ, why is this? What is it about the Americano track that makes it such good fun? As you've pointed out - it's not just me - it causes a rush to the floor, so others have discovered what fun it is too.

Energy? Definetely has that. Some sort of vibe, perhaps, that when it hits you, you just can't sit still. Like tapping your feet to a track you profess to dislike.
Tempo? Not the be all and end all, but at 126 it does fit into the majority bracket nicely.
Complexity? Well, it's certainly more interesting than a boring old Lady Gaga manufactured 'Trash Pop' track. Couple of breaks and altering 'energy' (without changing the tempo) that can be 'played' with. Like Steve said - not too challenging and not too boring.
Genre? Probably not. I mean, what genre is it?! And there's plenty of tracks that have this effect from a wide array of different genre.
Familiarity? Certainly has that after being played so much on the radio. And I think this is a key ingrediant. Going back to Lady Gaga. I remember playing "Telephone" some time before it went to No. 1 and it cleared the floor. No one had heard it before and, let's face it, it's rubbish so they were right to leave the floor. Then it hits No. 1 and, bang!!! Everyone's asking for it.
Vocals? Some of us (me included) can't help singing along to a track while dancing. And while not dancing too! Embarassed But this probably isn't one of them - not much to sing along to really is there!

So, yes, I'd say it's a combination all ingrediants and trying to work it out is like looking for the Holy Grail..!

I'd say, only in my hummble opinion, that the ingrediants in priority order stand as:

1. Familiarity
2. Energy / Vibe
3. (Right balance of) Complexity / interesting
4. Vocals
5. Tempo
6. Genre
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Southern Jiver
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 31, 2010 2:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for your input, TeeDee, definitely more food for thought. I had omitted familiarity from my criteria and that's a big one, so thanks for bringing that up. It's a big one because people are more likely to jump up and dance if they recognise the first bars of a track they have danced to before and enjoyed and they probably know where the breaks occur etc. However, there is probably a fine line between the familiar and the overplayed. At some point it's possible that "jump up" affect is no longer there if the track is played too many times.

I understand what you are saying about "No Speak Americano" and I have to admit that I have enjoyed dancing to it while still hating the track... Confused

I also like your list of prioritised ingredients although I think my list would be :

1. Energy / Vibe
2. Familiarity
3 (Right balance of) Complexity / interesting
4. Tempo
5. Vocals
6. Genre
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TeeDee
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 31, 2010 3:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Funnilly enough, I had Tempo and Vocals in your order too and then changed at the last minute before posting..! Energy and Familiarity are a close run thing too I'd say - be interesting what order others put them in and what other 'ingredients' they may add...

Totally agree with you on the overplayed thing. Take "All that Jazz" as a perfect example. Couple of years ago, it was played all over the place and people loved it. Then it started to get 'over played'. Now, we rarely hear it.

But, before it got it's overplayed status, it had the 'ingredients', even if the complex / interesting category is leaning a little towards difficult with all the breaks and changes of tempo (which familiarity made less difficult).

One other thing occurred to me (which I seem to remember someone else on here making mention of ages ago on a previous thread). And that's past experience or emotion. Some poeple have memories associated to certain tracks - good and bad and that can affect their feelings, but since this is so individual it's hardly an ingredient for what makes a track a 'rush to the floor' track..!
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