Tag Archives: swing

Emphasizing the 2&4

Have you ever seen this video before?

This is the breakdown of this video here where Harry Connick, Jr adjusted for the crowd’s offbeat 1, 3 clapping to bring them to the 2 & 4. If you look closely in the original video, you’ll also notice a brief moment where the drummer cheers him!

As The Andrew Sisters sing “If you want to keep the rhythm pumpin’, Bounce me brother with a solid four,” you’ll want that solid four as a dancer. Clapping on the 2 & 4, emphasizing the 2 & 4, etc.

Juan Villafane even went into further detail when teaching a Fast Charleston class at Stompology one year. He had working on dropping into the 2 & 4 more during our Charleston basics and then our Squat Charleston. He really wanted that emphasis to connect us into the music and our roots.

This also means that us teachers, bringing up the next generation of dancers, should also be emphasizing the 2 & 4. This could be through clapping out the rhythm. We can make sure we’re fully scatting the rhythm and emphasizing the 2 & 4 vocally. We also need to be picking appropriate swing tunes that swing hard and answer “yes” when you ask “would I dance to this on the social floor?”

SWING KIDS, Robert Sean Leonard, Tushka Bergen, 1993
SWING KIDS, Robert Sean Leonard, Tushka Bergen, 1993

Wednesday Night Hop – Ronnie Shellist Blues Band

Welcome to Wednesday Night Hop at The Arvada Tavern’s Bernard Ballroom. Enter through the phone booth for great music from the Ronnie Shellist Blues Band.

Tonight’s all about the blues. They’re dishing out sounds from Chicago, Texas, West Coast Swing, and the Delta all evening. Need a taste of their sound? Check out Muddy Waters, Little Walter, Jimmy Rogers, William Clarke, and Lightning Hopkins. We’re going to swingin’, groovin’, and jumpin’ our blues away.

Ronnie Shellist-vocals,harmonica
Bob Pellegrino-vocals,guitar
Curtis Hawkins-bass
Tony Pantellis-drums

$8 for students with valid ID, $10 for everyone else.
Drop-in Swing Lesson from 6:30-7:30pm – $10
Beginner Lindy Hop 8-9pm.- $10

We’ll see you on the dance floor!

Solo Fundamentals


In my experience, solo jazz movement has always been a priority, but the thought of jumping into a solo jam circle or contest has always put the fear of a thousand deaths straight into the core of my being. I have profoundly crashed and burned in front of my savvy solo peers because I was missing three crucial components of spontaneous solo movement: a solid repertoire, effortless musicality, and perhaps most important, unbridled joy. Continue reading

Learn to Lindy Hop in a Day

Here’s your chance to learn America’s dance, the lindy hop. On January 23, over the course of 3 hours, Swingin’ Denver instructors will guide you through several lindy hop basics. You’ll learn the swingout, the circle, different turns, how to swing a beat, maybe even some Charleston.

Time: 1:00-4:00pm

Location: Gravity Dance Collective, 157 Kalamath, Denver

Cost: $30 pre-register, $40 at the door

More info: No experience or partner required.