Tag Archives: contra dances

“Atlantic Crossing”

Here’s a music recommendation for all you reading this post: Atlantic Crossing.

Atlantic Crossing is a terrifically fun quartet based in Vermont which plays “New England Roots Music”, as their website states. I’ve heard them once or twice before on Robert Resnick’s great VPR show “All The Traditions” but it wasn’t till I saw them live the other night that I realized how wonderful they truly are.

I don’t know much about music classification but various sites describe their songs as, “acoustic”, “ballad”, “maritime”, “traditional folk,” and “contra-dance”.

While listening to them online or by C.D. (buy local people) is quite the treat I would really recommend to take any opportunity to see them live. I know they play at various Montpelier contra-dances so if you’re lucky enough to live in the capital city then that’s just grand for you.

If you’d like to read more about them then go visit their website: http://www.atlanticcrossingvt.com and you can hear their music online at http://www.jukeboxalive.com/audio_play_offsite.php?mid=457861&skin=642576.

I really hope that you take the moment to click above and check them out, they’re worth it.



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Does Anyone Else Miss The Waltz?

Alright, in full disclosure I am not quite old enough to remember when the waltz was truly in fashion but because I’m presumptuous I’m going to pretend that I did not just write that.

The waltz. Elegant, simple, beautiful, organized, I love it.

There’s a certain beauty in something which has very specific steps but always ends up turning into something incredibly unique.

And I’m not just speaking of waltzes but also the salsa, contra dances and their ilk.

For me they conjure back a time when there was order (I’m being poetic, I’m not proposing returning to a strict class system nor do I believe that waltz is “order” but I’m thinking in romantic terms so indulge me.) Order and security, goodness I miss that (nonexistent) time. A time when you could stroll into a dance and instantly know what to do. A time when dances were complete social interactions, particularly contra dances.

I love contra dances.

Anyways, I am proposing something. I am proposing that we who miss the waltz (and its ilk) strike back. When we go to a modern dance don’t go along with the flow, dedicate a song or two to one or two of the beautiful dances of yesteryear. And then get back to flailing. Because flailing can be fun.

But not as fun as waltzing.

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