T for Tom

Some Thoughts On Dancing

Posted in Uncategorized by johnsontoms on February 21, 2010

It’s been sunny in the past and though the clouds have settled in on my life for a while, they always part before long and just when I’ve given up that the rain will go away, the sun comes out again.  We always laugh when someone says it but “the sun will come out tomorrow.”

I guess that’s why I’ve been dancing a lot lately.  Nothing like jumping up and down on the bed, but shuffling my feet everywhere I go to something, anything.  In HEB two days ago I was shopping and sang out loud to the music they were playing, which was not good music.  But I hold on to these feelings because that’s proof that I’ve still got a life and one to be thankful for.  We should all be forever young even if just in body and spirit and it’s the good music I surround myself with that facilitates this for me.  While I type there’s a victrola with The Allman Brothers’s “Beginnings” spinning, some of the music the funkiest blues with covers of Spencer Davis and the like.  The blues are the blues, and to quote Howlin’ Wolf for a minute, “A lot of people be saying ‘I don’t what know the blues are, the blue the blues. What are the blues?’  Well I’m going to tell you what the blues is.  If you ain’t got no money and you’re broke, you got the blues.  When you ain’t got no money to pay your house rent you still got the blues.  Some people say ‘well, I ain’t got the blues.’  But if you still ain’t got no money to pay your house rent or buy food so you can eat you damn sure still got the blues.  And I’ll tell you anytime you ain’t got no money or food you’re thinking evil.  And if you’re thinking evil you got the blues.”

And as close as I can relate to the wolf’s blues I can say that I make it by dancing.  The words may be troubling sad, but when they ask why we dance to the blues it’s because we’re all there in some way, and that is I believe why the blues brings so many different people together.  Grab a good girl and celebrate on the dance floor.

Some people don’t dance enough, I think.  It’s liberating (maybe that’s where Ellen gets it from).  When your blues and too much to handle sometimes maybe just throwing on your dancing shoes will bring a smile to your face, I know it works for me.  And even though the blues won’t let me forget why it’s still the blues, damn it I’m alive and I’m going to dance.

There’s all different kinds though.  There’s blues in old country music and I might feel like a two-step, so I’ll throw on Bob Wills and His Texas Playboys, which I defy anyone to say isn’t perfect music for every possible situation.  I’m a Texan after all and if people say “I don’t know get why people say Texans are arrogant,” just take a good look at some of us.  This may be why it takes confidence to dance in public, I must just get mine from my southern heritage apparently.  That’s why a two-step is fun to have in my bag.  Not everyone’s a cowboy to be sure, but everyone knows the blues, and that’s again what brings people together and gets them on the dance floor.  People need to move with people, we’re a social animal, and the blues is something we all understand.  Even if it’s just a little swing and a few twirls, that’s dancing.  I’ve never been one for clubbing, so I can’t speak from much experience, but there is a time and place for a little body movin’ as well.  It is after all a hobby for a good bit of America.  But rock and roll is not dead, and I love that it never will die.  Because out there are a growing number of people who got the blues.  This is becoming a tougher time to be a first world country, and it’s got more people gettin’ the blues.  And I’ve noticed that we’re dancing.

Maybe you’re stepping at half time and that really good couple is putting everyone to shame with some kind of jitterbug, but really does it matter?  Some people are just trying to buy some milk and they have watch me shake my hips down the cereal aisle, but it makes me feel good and I sing, too.  I don’t think that makes me crazy.  It’s the mad ones for me, in the words of the dharma bum himself, and they don’t judge my dancing.

Waltz even if you don’t have a partner, or throw on the tijuana brass and bust a salsa.  But for me it’s the blues.  I can’t say this enough, this whole thing started in my head because I was getting the Led out with the windows down to “Black Country Woman” from Physical Graffiti, the dirtiest funk to come out of a guitar.  I don’t know if there’s a sure-fire way to dance to that, and if someone knows I’d love to be shown.  I just make up moves to songs like that, because I love the song and it deserves dancing, which is another way I’ve been looking at it: maybe some people don’t dance because they’re not hearing the same music I’m hearing. I’m not saying they should, but there’s some melody somewhere that will get everyone shaking.  It is after all, a party in the USA.  With that I’ll show myself the door.

So if you made it this far, you know what to do and I hope you’re doing it it now, wherever you are and whoever you’re with.  If you need help, allow me to set the mood:

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One Response

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  1. Ms. Becky said, on February 21, 2010 at 3:04 pm

    Couldn’t be in more agreement with ya there, Tom! Blues resonates with the soul, and dancing illustrates those feelings evoked. That being said, I’m looking forward to sharing a Blue Monday with you soon (tomorrow!)


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