This past Sunday at the LAAF Festival in downtown Asheville The Flaming Azaleas debuted their Solo Vintage Jazz piece to a song called Jungle Nights in Harlem. They also debuted themselves. The Flaming Azaleas, the fabulous dancer, Eva Millwood and myself, have been born out of a love for Solo Jazz movement and the Lindy Hop.
For those of you unfamiliar with the Lindy Hop it is often referred to as the Grandfather of swing dance. Other swing dances would include the common 6 count East Coast Swing, Jitterbug, West Coast Swing, etc. A lot of people recognize it as that social dance where the dancers throw each other up in the air, also known as an aerial, in really creative, surprising and amazing ways.
The Lindy was born in the late 1920's in Harlem, NY by African Americans. As one site on the subject puts it "the blending of African and European dance had been simmering for over 75 years. The natural freeform style of African dance adopted the European notion of partnered or coupled dancing. The Ragtime Jazz and other popular music of the day delivered rhythms and tempos tailor made for the fast footwork and kick outs of the Charleston, and the Jazz/Tap patterns of the Black Bottom." -kclindyhop.org The famous Savoy Ballroom in Harlem was where most of the moves were inspired and created. Like many things, during World War ll the Lindy Hop fell away but was revived in the 80's. Yet another reason to loooove the 80's! I'm so glad the 80's brought you back Lindy Hop.
I go out swing dancing every Tuesday night. Let me know if you want to come! And stay tuned for more updates on The Flaming Azaleas!