Sunday, 25 September 2011

Camel Walk Part 1

Here is another post inspired by my recent e-conversations with Annick Drösdal-Levillain. We had been discussing Lowry's pseudonym "Camel" for some of his writings for the Leys Fortnightly which he adapted from his initials C.M.L.. Our exchange started me thinking of the old dance called the "Camel Walk". Perhaps the impending annual "irreverence" called the Lowry Lounge in October also got me in the spirit!

I had always thought that the Camel Walk was a 60's dance concept but I discovered after looking through You Tube that the dance had its origins back in the 1910's or earlier:

The Camel Walk was a ragtime animal dance, came originally from Vaudeville shows. The Camel Walk was mainly done by college students and "flappers" during the Jazz age in the 1910's and 20's with the public as a social dance. It was basically done with a Staright Up (Posture) but otherwise was walking 1920's fox-trot from start to end while dragging your steps slightly, done to slow music and in a zigzag direction or rotary direction. The Camel Walk drew alot of displeasure among many mainly because the Girls woul rest their heads on the leaders shoulder while dancing which many frowned upon as vulgar dancing. Occasionally the dance was varied with Fox-Trot steps by those who disliked anything quite so extreme.

Another version was done in the 1950's/60's; - The Camel Walk spin-offs of the 1910's became a popular retro dance to do at the time in the 1950's/60's, however these spin-off's were freestyle rather than couples. With such dances as the Camel Walk, Dance the Camel Walk, The Camel Walk Stroll etc ... It is said the the Horse dance was just another Camel Walk. The Camel Walk became the Stroll in the 1960's.


So let's kick off with the University Six - could Malc have heard this and been partly inspired to adopt the monicker Camel - who knows!

Then we have a demonstration of the dance by Al & Leon

Let's embark on a tour of the later versions:

See Part 2

Couldn't go without leaving this postcard and a reminder that I am still posting over on Postcards from Malc

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