The New Club Dance Style
I'm curious about something - why did disco die? Almost forty years ago, club dancing existed in the form of disco dancing (or nightclub dancing). It was cheesy, fun, and uninhibited. No matter how young you are, I'm sure you've come across a re-enactment dance of Saturday Night Fever or heard the songs or cover of the songs "Stayin' Alive" or "I Will Survive" at some point in your life.
The disco and funk era was something for sure. I'm a big fan of the two genres, pulling lots of elements of their dance styles into my own dance style, particularly locking (a street dance style). In fact, when I talk to girls, I often mention that I should have grown up in the 70's. I'm still throw in arm rolls and pointing left, right, and center in heaps while I dance.
More importantly, guys and girls danced and interacted with each other on the dance floor through lots of partnering work. You could either do it freestyle, or pick up some formal moves from disco schools and learn "the hustle", "cha cha", or "touch style". Obviously, if you wanted to dance like John Travolta and be one up on the other guys, you would take some lessons, and of course, learn how to point with confidence.
Somehow, through the 80's and 90's, disco died, the partnering dance patterns disappeared and only reappeared in the form of swing and especially Latin. What was left in the clubs were guys giving girls awkward turns, twisting arms, and later on, just dirty grinding. There was a disco backlash that killed the music genre in North America for a while, but why did partner dancing in clubs fade away?
Was it too hard to learn? Not everyone wants to or can pick up dancing. With formal steps, it also becomes too rigid - ballroom dancing doesn't need to be revisited in the clubs.
Is it not in men's natures? Obviously, women go out for girl's night outs to dance while most men would definitely not be doing that - rather, hanging out at a sports bar, strip club, or watching the latest UFC event at a friend's house is the preferred choice. If guys are at the clubs, then it's only to get drunk enough to muster enough confidence to either 1) approach a girl 2) grind up against a girl 3) forget that they're there.
Maybe it was due to the popularity of breakdancing? I was watching the 80's move Back To The Future the other day, and a breakdancing (or breaking) scene made me notice that the 80's started to give way to hip-hop culture and breaking. Somewhat male-oriented, girls in high heels and short skirts can only dance on the spot and watch on the edge of the dance circle. They can't even squat like the boys.
You could be the best b-boy and dance a storm for all the girls to watch, but what they really want is part of the fun and action. I've seen and heard it many times. Guys who break, pop, and lock asking me what to do. Nothing wrong with breaking. I love it, but it doesn't work so well in clubs.
There could be many other reasons, but simply, partnered dancing in clubs simply died. However, thanks to dance shows like "Dancing With The Stars", "So You Think You Can Dance?", and ""America's Best Dance Crew", a resurgence of dance interest, particularly from girls, has ignited. Girls have always wanted to dance, but now the pressure's on for guys to dance. All the partnering and flirting of dancing with the opposite sex is coming back and I want to be on the front lines making it happen.
I don't call it Nightclub Dancing anymore, so it's not confused with Disco Dancing, but simply Club Dance. Club Dance, or what I call the Club Dance Style, is simply taking basic street moves (which I mostly cover in my Level 1 Program) and mixing it with some time-honored and some new partnering moves. For example, taking some cuban salsa turn patterns while doing lyrical hip hop movements.
We're not competing for a dance show, so I want to keep my Club Dance Style as freestyle as possible, meaning to minimize the formal steps while maximizing the fun factor. Keep your eye on it. If all the guys following my dance lessons pick it up, you'll see it show up in a club or social event near you.