Learning The Lindy
There was a time in Albuquerque when there were no dance instructors teaching Lindy Hop. The only way to get exposure to the dance was to head out of town or watch a video. This was long before Youtube, so the best way to exchange videos of dancing was via VHS tape. Lindy instructional videos were extremely rare, so we did what the Californians did, watched old hollywood movies on VHS to learn how to dance Lindy.
The first tape I watched over and over was of a movie titled “Don’t Knock the Rock,” featuring Bill Haley and the Comets. There are only a couple scenes in the movie where the dancers are dancing Lindy and sometimes only in the background. I watched these scenes many, many times. For those of you familiar with VHS, to repeatedly watch these scenes to learn the footwork, it was necessary to rewind again and again and again. This meant squatting next to the TV, finger hovered just over the VCR buttons to hit “stop” at the precise moment so that you did not rewind too far. Thankfully, we have Youtube now.
Below is a great dance scene from “Don’t Knock the Rock.” Bill Haley and the Comets perform “Rip it Up.”