[Dixielandjazz] dixieland and dancing

acjspres at aol.com acjspres at aol.com
Fri Dec 3 12:24:38 PST 2004

We have tons of people dancing at almost every gig we play here in  
Arizona.......very often it is the college age crowd doing the Lindy Hop, Balboa  and 
the Shag. We`are fortunate to have attracted a good following among this  
group. We started in 1998 at our AZ Classic Jazz Festival by offering East Coast  
Swing lessons. It has continued to grow. We had about 80 to 90 young lindy  
hoppers from all over the country at our jazz festival three weeks ago. This has  
been typical for the last 3 or 4 years.
It has been a treat watching the "youngsters" and the older crowd out on  the 
dance floor together. 
The key is to go play where the kids`are hanging out....a few years ago we  
approached a club owner and suggested a monday night weekly gig as a swing  
dancing night. We agreed to play for free for two weeks to get the gig....we  
packed the joint and were there for over a year. Lessons from 7:00 to 8:00 pm  
and the band from 8:00 to 11:00 pm. The key is to hook up with your local swing  
dance (not ballroom dance) crowd. The beauty is we never get asked to play a  
latin nor a waltz...just good jazz. East coast "Condon style" dixieland.
I have one son who got hooked four years ago and is now instrumental in  
teaching and organizing many of our events. 
Joe  Hopkins
AZ Classic Jazz Society Vice-President
AZ Classsic Jazz Festival  Co-Director
Jazz Clarinet 602-810-5888 or 480-396-6798
_www.azclassicjazz.org_ (http://www.azaclassicjazz.org/) 

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