Monday, April 20, 2009

More from Hawkeye...

Saturday night at the Hawkeye Swing Festival brought the Hot Swing Combo, featuring many of the same players as the Twin Cities Hot Club as well as Patrick Harison on accordian and vocals. Plus my friend Jason Zabinski taking care of the band breaks. How's that for a line-up!

The only thing I had to take care of for the evening (besides all the ladies) was music for the finals of the Jack & Jill contest. Here's what I used:
  1. Everything Is Jumpin' - Artie Shaw - The Very Best Of Artie Shaw - 5:09 - 165
  2. Between The Devil & The Deep Blue Sea - Django Reinhardt - The Swing Sessions Volume 1 - 2:58 - 185
  3. Harlem Air Shaft - Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra - Live In Swing City: Swingin' With Duke - 3:05 - 211
The first song was an all-skate for warm-up. Second song was for spotlights. There were six couples in the finals, and each went in for two spotlights (so a total of 6 choruses of music). The song wasn't quite long enough to cover everything, so I restarted it for the last couple of spotlights. (I decided that it would be better and fairer to keep the same tune going rather than give the last couples something totally new, that nobody else had the chance to dance to or to hear.) Then the third song was another all-skate. I picked this one to be more of a challenge--as far as I know that's what's typically done for Jack & Jills. The last song is meant to differentiate the couples, to see who can keep up, and give the judges the chance to make up their minds if they can't decide on their rankings. After the contest, a friend of mine (a very experienced dancer who's been around for a long time, and is like a parent for his city's scene) commented that he thought the third song was too demanding, given the dancers in the finals. Don't know if I agree with him or not. Once the footage is up on Youtube, I might change my opinion. If you were there, what'd you think?

As an aside, I've got to say that it's really nice to get feedback on my music choices, especially from someone who's opinion I respect so much. It's all to rare that I get any comments other than compliments (which are nice, but not all that informative), and occasional vague complaints or snarky remarks. Constructive criticism is really helpful.

No comments:

Post a Comment