21st Century Sound
Last updated on March 29th, 2017 at 07:09 pm
First, an admission on my ignorance on dance music. However, a look around chips away bits of my ignorance informing me that music composed-either in its entirety or in part- for the prime purpose of getting you off your bum to groove along to the sound of the beat qualifies as dance music.
|Image: Hed Kandi via artsability|
That settled, having lived most of my life thereabouts the equator in the bosom of The Mother Continent, Africa, dance comes naturally to me. You see dance is a big part of any African culture. It is more than a means to celebrate, more than part of courtship, more than just mere fun.
Among the many tribes inhabiting this land of the Pharaohs, Chiefs and legends of the mysticism of Shaka Zulu and Lwanda Magere; Dance is spiritual. If you doubt my assertions, maybe you should set sometime and observe the Voodoo festival that takes place annually off the coast of Benin.
Better still, you should spend less time with the animals at the game parks next time you are on safari and spare some to sample the diversity in culture. This, not because animals don’t dance as they do -especially after the first rains wet the great savannah plains after the dry season- but just to get the picture. The portrait of African dance.
For instance, when the Morans- warriors- dance, it gets so intense. So spiritual that some of the Morans kula Mori– figuratively speaking, eat their hearts. Consume their spirits. Imbibe their souls. A phenomenon visible as a whole body trance complete with rolling back of the eyeballs and unawareness of person, time and place.
In this dance stupor, a Moran may walk- bulldoze is probably more apt- through the wall of the Manyatta (traditional hut made from wood frame packed with leaves, earth and finished with a smooth coat cow dung) as if made of wet tissue paper. Chakacha, Amavega and Mwomboko dances are just samplings of the rich dance culture in Africa.
The spell of globalization continues to afflict many of Africa’s indigenous dances and dance music. But just like their European counterparts- The Waltz of the Classical music era; Baroque dance of the Baroque period and Mazurka, Barcarolle & polonaise of the Romantic music era- modernism as in many fields often constitutes nothing but a change of tools. The 21st Century is no exception to this rule.
Another feather may as well be added to the cap of Bill Gates for his role in the rebirth of dance music as his baby- Microsoft- made it possible for computers to be personal. With personalization of the computer in the1980’s electronic dance music was reborn. In place of Isikuti, flute, Violin and Se
was the computer, samplers and drum machines.
The tempo was fast as was the spread of dance music from the dance floors in Ibiza,Delirium, The Trip and Manumission to iPhones, iPad Touch and mobile phones. A look at songs topping the 52year old Billboard charts in the first decade of the 21st Century reveals this steal on us by dance music (+ dance influenced music) especially so in the last 4 years or thereabouts.
2010: Sample of Current Dance hits ruling the airwaves
*Tonight ( I’m Lovin’ You) by Enrique Iglesias featuring Ludacris and DJ Frank E
*Firework by Katy Perry from the album teenage dream
Last Days Of Disco by Robbie Williams from the album Reality Killed The video star.
You Haven’t seen The Last o… by Cher from the album Burlesque
One Hot Pleasure by Erika Jayne
*Who’s That Chick? by David Guetta and Rihanna
Evacuate The Dance Floor by Cascada from the album Evacuate the dance floor
* Songs Also among top 100 dance songs on iTunes
2009: Billboard Hits
January 17th – February 6th : Just Dance by Lady Gaga featuring Colby O’Donis
April 11th – April 17th : Poker Face by Lady Gaga
April 18th – July 10th : Boom Boom Pow by Black Eyed Peas
July 11th – October 16th : I Gotta Feeling by Black Eyed Peas
2008: Billboard Hits
March 15th – April 4 :Love in the club by Usher featuring Young Jeeezy
Jan 5th – March 14th :Low by Florida featuring T- Pain
August 23rd – September 5th :Disturbia by Rihanna
October 25th – October 31st :Womanizer by Britney Spears
2007: Billboard Hits
March 24th -April 6th : Glamorous by Fergie featuring Ludacris
September 8th- September 14th : Big Girl’s Don’t Cry by Fergie
September 29th – October 5th : Stronger by Kanye West
Evergreen Dance Music
One more time by Daft Punk from the album discovery
Satisfaction by Benny Benassi Presents the biz
Who Let The Dogs Out by Baha Men
Listen To Your Heart by DHT
What’s on your playlist?
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