JANUARY 14TH 2004
"I just put my feet in the ground and move them around."
(Rusty Frank -- "Right!")
Rusty performing with the Decobelles in the Bay Area, New Years
FIRST WEEK OFF TO A GOOD START
Dance Lesson and DJ on the first
Wednesday of each month from 7:30-8:00
This Week's Celebrations (actually, through the end of the year)
If it's your birthday this week, just let us know at the Rhythm Club so you can get your birthday dance!
Originally listed as the San Pedro Rehab Facility, this Event is being held at the San Pedro Pavillion 1322 W. 6th St., San Pedro (behind San Pedro Hospital) Contact person(s) Luann (or Barbara or Rebecca) at 310-514-5270
Directions: 110 FWY to San Pedro all the way to the end/Gaffey St., turn left into middle lane (or you'll run into parked cars) to 6th St., turn right. The Pavillion in on the right side of the street, just before Butte. Street parking on 6th and Butte and the San Pedro Hospital parking lot is further down Butte and left on 7th St.
Wendy & Gilbert Concepcion
Sr. Mary Babcock (Little Company of Mary Associates Program)
No plans for a Swing Shift Fliers program, however, Fliers members are welcome to join us in our "script" program. The script will be narrated on swing history and traditions and social dancers will be sent out in between narrations. This does not require rehearsal although dressed in "Lindy attire" would help atmosphere. After the program we like to socialize with the residents (and employees) for a while, and sometimes we go to a restaurant if the mood hits.
Questions? RSVP? contact Jes email@example.com or 310-372-4821 (LMM)
As always, the SSRC aims to have one Event per month to promote Swing Dance. In 2003 we managed to schedule 8 Events and accomplished 6 of them. Some of the Assisted Living facilities were undergoing management and construction changes while other "regular" Events contacted us too late for prospective participants to be available.
Our six Events were:
Introduction to Swing for the Youth Group at St. John's Plasencia on Saturday, January 18, 2003. This included community members not necessarily affiliated with the Church.
Entertainment for Family Day at Sunrise Assisted Living, Hermosa Beach on Saturday, April 26, 2003. We danced with residents, family and employees at this one.
Artesia Christian Home on Saturday, August 23, 2003 is one of our favorites. The residents are a bit quiet and shy but they have a sparkle in the eye (nifty rhyme, huh?). This was the "premiere" of Rusty's Swing Shift Fliers Performance Group and even an employee or two joined in.
Pacific Gardens in Santa Monica on Saturday, August 30, 2003 had participants shifting their schedules to come to this one. Well worth it, the residents wouldn't let us leave because they wanted to tell us about their WWII Canteen experiences.
The last, and the HIGHLIGHT, of the SSRC program was at the Fort MacArthur Museum on Sunday, October 12, 2003. Participants not only danced, but dressed up in various time periods from the '20s to the '50s for a Fashion Show, and a group of Andrews Sisters look-alikes sang a few tunes.
We are already starting off the New Year with two Events.
The Pavillion in San Pedro is interested in what we have to offer. We have 6 participants already confirmed and can always use extra dancers, "hands" and "voices". There is a need for 2 more ladies for this one. Saturday, January 31, 2PM-3PM is the confirmed date.
We are still in the planning stages for another Event at Fort MacArthur (San Pedro) with a slightly different twist. It seems that the California Gold program (Huell Howser) will be filming there on Saturday, February 14, 2004 (yep, Valentine's Day) from 12Noon-5PM. They need swing dancers for "atmosphere" while the filming is going on. No guarantee you'll become a star but...A script for 5 hours seems a bit much, so we may just alternate posing and dancing . If "he" interviews you, tell him how much we LOVE swing dancing. Need to dress up for this one!!! It has been suggested that we go out for Valentine's Day dinner at a local restaurant afterwards (John Kanaster, who suggested this Event, is a "local" and knows good places to eat) and then the show "SWING!" that night. Mark your calendars!
Questions? RSVP? contact Jes firstname.lastname@example.org or 310-372-4821 (LMM)
JesNote from the editor (Rusty): Thanks again Jes for all your tireless work keeping the SSRC rolling. And thanks, too, to all the participants over the year. You are all the greatest!
JOIN NOW! -- click SWING SHIFT RHYTHM CLUB -- send your first and last name and email address.
Our good pals Michael D'Angelo and Cheryl Herbst got a great getaway last week -- in Hawaii. Sigh... Michael sent over these digital pictures. Notice the Lindy By The Sea t-shirt :) Michael told us that the telephone picture was him calling Rusty to tell her they couldn't make it to the Rhythm Club -- see how sad he is.
We had the great pleasure of having one of our favorite swing dancers visit from her temporary home in New York City. We received this email from her and wanted to share it with everyone. The bottom line is, go out dancing! Support your local scene!
I know how great the social swing dance scene is in the Los Angeles and So. California area. My boyfriend and I would get out there twice a week, sometimes I'd get out more often and on my own. I've been swing dancing since 1997 and have lived here my entire life... up until this past March 2003.
That's when my boyfriend, Scott, and I moved to New York City for a great job opportunity for him. We're very happy to have this opportunity to work and live in one of the most dynamic, great cities of the world. But on one note, for me, one of the decidedly less dynamic aspects of New York City is it's social swing scene. For some reason, the skill level and general courteous etiquette on the NYC social swing dance scene PALES in comparison to the social swing dance scene in LA.
Also, it baffles me that in a city of outstanding musical talent and bands that we've had the pleasure of seeing, that the bands that play at the swing events (EXCEPT for George Gee's band- thank you George!) have been disappointing.
Needless to say, I was very excited to come back to So. Cal for Christmas and catch up on my swing dancing. Much to my dismay, Suzy Q's and Swing Pit had shut down. Still, every night I had the chance, I went out swing dancing, with great dancers and absolutely terrific bands (Bill Elliot, the Esquires, Stompy Jones etc., etc..).
So I say to you all, GET OUT AND DANCE! SUPPORT YOUR CLUB OPERATORS AND THE GREAT MUSICIANS AND DJ'S they bring you ON A REGULAR BASIS. I bet, when you get to the end of your life, you will not regret going to bed late on a weeknight and being a little groggy at work; but you may wish that you had danced more. Time is a construct of the conscious mind. The only "time" we ever really have is the present, here and now, as seconds keep rolling along. It's the same for everyone regardless of what you do. The time to dance is now, and always.
I also say to you that, regardless of the swing dancing scene, Scott and I are thoroughly enjoying our time here in NYC. To compare NYC and LA on an overall general level is to do yourself a disservice. Each city is so unique that it would be asking you to compare your son to your daughter, your ears to your nose. We'd love to show you the town if you decide to visit.
all the best,
Imagine it's 1927, two tap dancers are in a show where they need a finale for the whole company. They put together a little tap dance that everyone can do -- it's called "The Shim Sham Shimmy". Imagine it's 2004, and one of those tap dancers lives right here in Southern California. Imagine you go to his 97th birthday party. Just guess what it would be like! It was great! Rusty and her tap dance partner, Greg Gast, got to attend this shindig, held last Saturday night at a private home. Hundreds of his life-long friends visited and traded stories of how Leonard Reed had affected their lives, helped get their career going, inspired them...
Leonard Reed was in exceptional form, looking more like 37-year old. He got up and did an old comedy bit with a young man, he did a comedy bit with his lovely wife, singer Barbara DeCosta, and demonstrated his own dance, The Shim Sham, with Rusty and our pal Chester Whitmore.
There were many celebrities on hand, including Arthur Duncan (the great tap dancer featured each week on the Lawrence Welk Show years ago), and jazz singer Linda Hopkins. Arthur had two of his twelve(!) siblings there, and we all had a great visit. Linda Hopkins (with a little of the ol' bubbly in her) sang some enthusiastic songs -- that's the best way we can put it, but imagine Rusty rolling on the floor with laughter and you get the picture.
Young people, old people, all had a great time. Happy Birthday, Leonard!If you would like to learn more about Leonard Reed, why not pick up a copy of Rusty's book, "TAP!" at your local library, bookstore, or online (http://swingshiftontap.com/ontap.asp#tap)
CD BABY: Music music music. That's always the question. Where to find music? What to get? The answers are all here on CD Baby (well, not ALL the answers...). CD Baby is for artists themselves to sell their product. So what you'll find here is new swing music, the new greats like The Campus Five, The Swingsations, The Hot Club Quartette, and even Rusty's and Will Ryan's cd of the Shim Sham Shimmy by the Palms Springs Yacht Club. By buying on this site, you are really supporting the artists themselves. Why not have a browse and treat yourself to one or two new cds. Remember, help support living, breathing music artists by never copying music -- we'll all appreciate it!
* Wondering what the heck a "gate"is? This was a phrase popularized by 1940's comedian, Jerry Colonna, who would holler it out every time he was introduced on the Bob Hope radio program. It was a friendly salutation to a swing cat (dancer or swing music enthusiast).
JOIN THE SWING SHIFT RHYTHM CLUB TODAY!
Swing Shift Rhythm Club (SSRC) is the volunteer arm of our local swing
dance community. Through the SSRC, we visit senior homes, children
hospitals, and entertain and dance at street fairs. The purpose of the
club is to do some good deeds and promote the fun of swing dancing.