I started this blog three years ago because there wasn't much Lindy related to read online. I thought I might as well start my own site. Much has changed since then, and now everyone has something to say. I think that's great. Some people don’t think so. I’m discovering how little faith my friends have in free speech for the masses. I’ve been accused of being a bit of a populist though. One thing I’m realizing is that what I’m looking for in online discussions is probably not going to materialize because it comes down to the fact that our scene isn’t that big.
What else is there to say? This is from Frankie's 88th Birthday Celebration in 2002.
My favorite DC memory of him where he took us to school. In the midst of an improvised Big Apple during a jam, he jumps up out of his chair from the sidelines, stops the presses and shows the kids how its done.
And my favorite "new" video of him with his son Chazz Young. I don't get tired of watching this.
Learn more about him at his official website: www.FrankieManning.com
Next to last stop on my Frankie Manning 95th Birthday Festival Retrospective. I actually wrote this note first before the others and went back and forth between re-posting it or not, and whether it should go at the beginning or the end. A few weeks ago I thought it was appropriate to end, but reading it now makes me think it should have gone first. Oh well. This note was originally posted on May 31, 2009.
I’d like to say I decompressed on the ride back, but I just sat on the train and stewed, making myself angrier. I started writing a summary of my weekend experiences, but that turned into a litany of threats, culminating in a step by step plan to take on everyone I held responsible for pissing me off. I was pretty much prepared never to step into another Lindy Hop dance again, but fortunately a few people stepped in to pull me from the edge.
The rest of Sunday evening went pretty smoothly.
Sitting through the Jack & Jill semi-finals reminded me why these things are usually scheduled in the afternoon of most events. We were originally supposed to do it right after the show and before the bands took the stage to give people time to go eat dinner or otherwise freshen up. Unless you’re in it, prelims and semi-final dance contest rounds aren’t the most riveting things to watch. Thanks to Joel Domoe, Aurelie & Tony Tye and our DJ, Ryan Swift for moving things along as quickly as possible.
On Friday we did it all over again because we had to move everything from the Grand Ballroom to the Hammerstein Ballroom downstairs. Unfortunately, that meant that I had to skip out on the memorial service and the dance at Central Park. It was a tough decision especially after David had detailed the line up to me earlier in the week. The speaker and musical guest list was loaded, a testament to Frankie's influence.
The week of the event, I pretty much hit the ground running when I got in on Wednesday. I arrived in NYC by bus a little after 1 pm, checked into my hotel and then got a text that some people were starting a meeting at 2 pm in the Manhattan Center. It was off to the races.
It kept going that day until about 3 am. I should have taken a cue from Chester Whitmore who I caught napping during our first and last all hands staff meeting that night. I was impressed by his ability to doze off, be awakened by a question directed at him, and then promptly fall back asleep when attention went on to something that didn't concern him. Unfortunately, I didn’t have that luxury because everything concerned me.
This is the second installment of a special feature that I’m doing with Ramona Staffeld. We’re looking at some very old school clips of her past performances and getting her reactions. The first one was from the 1998 American Lindy Hop Championships. This one is Ramona dancing with Frankie Manning at Midsummer's Night Swing at Lincoln Center. Everything after the video below is written by her with a few hopefully helpful edits from me. Enjoy!
Thought I'd pass along a few new clips from Frankie Manning's 95th Birthday Festival. First up is a couple of awesome looking previews of the DVD from the company that is producing it.
Hellzapoppin' in 30 Seconds
Via Yehoodi.com: New clips of the Hellzapoppin' Finals from waaayyy up on high. Great view of the action.
I’ve been obsessive compulsively keeping track of videos posted from the Frankie Manning 95th Birthday Festival. This is mostly because I didn’t get to see a lot of it despite being at all the evening events from before start until after finish. I was looking at the Silver Shadows’ routine and realized that there were 11 videos of it online. I wanted to determine which one got the best view. Then I got even more curious and did the same for the other performance videos, the competitions, etc. until I just compiled a ton of information.
I figured that it would be a shame not to share this stuff, so now everything is compiled into these easy to reference blog posts by day/night.
Click on the links below and enjoy!