For those of you who want to join in but don’t quite get it.
For my American fans,(two of you according to my stat page 🙂 ) This is English Expressive Blues and not the style you might be use to.
I often watch people walk into the Blues Room and go blank. Cos they don’t see the connection with what’s going on.
In any Jive, Tango, West coast room, everyone is dancing the same style. They may be doing different moves, but the core is the same. Go into a blues room, and no two couples appear to be dancing the same structured way.
There are micro dancers, doing the thing that looks like they are just standing in the middle of the room grinding on each other, the cerocers are doing slow jive. The tango people are trotting around the room, and the West coasters are in the corner trying very hard to blend in, bless em.
So what’s going on?
In principle, to the casual observer, it looks like a free for all.
But there are some basics, so here are my Blues Room Rules to get you going in the right direction.
The First and Most Important Rule.
Music is God.
It is the most critical part, which is why it comes first.
Different tempos, different themes, genre’s, etc. It’s all an option. Anything and Everything can come your way.
There is no constant other than there is no constant.
That’s the challenge and the fun part. You need to be open to change what you know to fit the situation, and not just bang out what you normally do as per usual.
It’s all about interpretation.
Silence is Golden.
In the blues room, you dance to the music. If the music suddenly stops, so should you.
If the musicians thought it apt to pause mid-tune, you should not be dancing all over the place.
Because, Why Would You?
If there is an echo of music in your soul, then you can give a sexy little wiggle. But other than that, mark the moment with a pause, then wait for the track to move on.
The music is more varied and allows you to play a bit more than mere formulaic set moves. So, take the time and learn to enjoy how your body can move.
Remember Rule One.
When it’s slow and sexy, your job is to be slow and sexy.
When it’s wild and crazy…
You get my point.
Learn to show your emotions through the power of dance. Or just show off, whatever works for you, but do something.
Add to the dance with a piece of you.
Don’t mess with the Intimate Close Hold.
The Intimate Close Hold.
You stand very close to each other and depending on how happy to move into another’s personal space you are. The leads can be from the arm, chest, stomach, hips, and thighs. It’s very minimalistic and intimate.
The rookie mistake is that, because it looks easy, it is, and they can crack on any old how.
If you aren’t going to learn it correctly, there are two things you must and should know.
1, You don’t lead with the Knee.
2, There is always room for baby Jesus.
Knee to knee is very uncomfortable in a physical way.
Crotch to crotch is uncomfortable in so many other ways and can involve screaming, slapping, the police. Stuff that isn’t helping the dance along. So, pack it in.
Tender does it Better.
The more you hang out in the Blues Room, the more you will notice that the need for strong grips and forceful actions are made mostly redundant.
If the lead does that, then the follows would not be able to stop and play mid-move, as directed by the music. (Remember Rule 1)
In turn, if the follows don’t loosen up then the leads themselves can’t add in their embellishments. Playing isn’t just for the ladies here. (Rule 1 is not sexist)
If the music is dramatic then so be it if it’s got a purpose. However, most of the tracks tilt towards slow and twisty. Or the dramatics are short-lived and are soon replaced by sweeping notes.
So learn to ease up on the constant pressure, and tone it down as far as you can.
This small adjustment allows both partners to relax from the formulaic dance patterns. From this, you find the time you need to play with the music.
Which, is the best part of the Blues Room.
Those are my rules, Hope you like and agree.
Feel free to share them with your friends.