The Clinton Herald, Clinton, Iowa

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September 27, 2013

Dances in Lyons and Clinton



All of this came to a screeching halt in 1956. The top songs just prior to THE REVOLUTION were Guy Mitchell’s “Singing the Blues” and “That Singing Rage, Miss Patti Paige,” performing “How Much is That Doggie in the Window?” and then…. BANG!! Elvis hit it big with “Heart Break Hotel” and “Blue Suede Shoes,” and Bill Haley and the Comets sang “Rock Around the Clock.” Teenagers would never be the same again. And, it seems, they have been ever since “rebels without a cause!”


Still, the Jitter-Bug was easily adapted for dancing to the loud, raucous be-bop or rock revolution dancing. Everyone practiced all the moves at home watching “American Bandstand,” and became more proficient at Club 14 or CYO functions. BUT WAIT, in 1957, the nuns banned Elvis (the Pelvis) Presley songs from any of their dances; and, just when we’d learned how to twirl and do the intricate moves of the “Clinton Hop,” Chubby Checker (named to mimic, Fats Domino) came on the scene in 1962 with “The Twist!” Sadly, I don’t think anyone has “touch danced” since then, except perhaps at 50’s and 60’s hops or for school dress-up days. Why, just the other day some young girl needed to have the term “sock hop” defined for her. (You couldn’t dance on the gym floor with your shoes on!)


Why not, just for fun, put on your poodle skirt or some skin-tight jeans. Don your dirty white bucks or your saddle shoes. Grease your hair back or put it in a pony-tail; form lines for the “Bunny Hop” or “The Stroll”; set that bar for a “Limbo,” and put those feet in motion,…. then…. WAIT! Calm down and please be seated, .… ‘cuz you’re all pretty old for this. -- You could get hurt!!

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