January 25, 2013
That's nice and slow. I think you can all learn that, and I think it would be nice if kids today learned that dance, maybe in gym class. I think it would help them in many ways. And feel free to dress like that, even unironically.
I found that because YouTube suggested it after I watched this 1965 clip from the TV show "Hollywood a Go-Go" with Del Shannon singing "Runaway" and the "Hollywood a Go-Go" go go dancers were dancing around him doing some dance that represented running away, even though their forward motion only took them in a circle so they never got away. It's faster and more frenetic dancing, but I think you might be able to figure out the moves, even though we never get to see the feet.
Seemingly bridging the time gap between the first and second video — and also suggested by YouTube — here's Little Eva singing about the brand-new dance "The Loco-Motion." I say "seemingly" because it looks early 60s and the "Runaway" dance looks later 60s, but in fact, both clips are from 1965. A lot of old and new intersected in 1965. Personally, I was 14 years old, and I was rooting for progress. I watched "Hollywood a Go-Go" and "Shindig" (the show Little Eva's on), and I tuned in hoping to see British invasion stuff like The Kinks or folk rock stuff like The Byrds. I would have regarded Del Shannon as an intrusion from the pre-Beatles era. "Runaway" was a hit in 1961. It was one of the singles we played at slumber parties when we were children.
"The Loco-Motion" was a hit in 1962. Little Eva — Eva Narcissus Boyd — was a maid who also worked as a babysitter for Carole King and Gerry Goffin: "It is often claimed that Goffin and King were amused by Boyd's individual dancing style, so they wrote 'The Loco-Motion' for her" — but maybe that's not true. Little Eva doesn't look too interested in dancing in that "Shindig" clip. The notorious song "He Hit Me (It Felt Like A Kiss)" was based on what Little Eva told Carole King about her relationship with her boyfriend. That song was originally recorded by The Crystals — produced by the not-yet-a-murderer Phil Spector — and in recent years, it's been covered by Courtney Love and Grizzly Bear — with some unknown degree of irony.