Site logo

Located in the East End of Louisville at 8023 Catherine Lane PHONE (502) 377-4859 Contact Us
red-fleur-de-lis-mdWest Coast Swing
The precise origins of swing are not clear. In the 1910's there was a dance called the Texas Tommy, that according to Craig Hutchinson was the precursor of it all. After that, there is the Lindy hop which originated in the Savoy Ballroom in Harlem. The name refers to Charles Lindbergh's "hop" across the ocean in 1927. From this evolved the jitterbug. This name appears in a Cab Calloway song of the early 1930's. Lindy and jitterbug evolved into east coast swing and jive. Where exactly west coast swing became a separate dance is not exactly clear, but happened somewhere in the 1940's. Skippy Blair was teaching what was essentially WCS (albeit called Western Swing) in the 50's.

West Coast Swing
West coast swing is the state dance of California. It's origins are definitely in Lindy Hop, but "you've come a long way, baby!" It's distinctive "dancing in a slot" approach derives from San Diego dancehalls as far back as 1938. The kicking jitterbugs would frolic in the center of the floor, with the smooth dancers grooving on the periphery. First called western swing by Arthur Murray in the 1950s, swing had taken a definite right turn. A "slot" appeared along with the follower's "walk walk" on the first two steps thanks to Murray's initial coding of the dance in a studio.
In the 50's, this dance was sometimes referred to as western swing and/or sophisticated swing, and sometimes it still is. In Downey, California in 1958, any dance called "western" would not attract students. Skippy Blair and her crew would explain that "western" really meant "west coast." Then, Jim Banister, local editor of the Herald American Newspaper suggested that they call it just that. So when they advertised in 1961, they advertised the dance as west coast swing. The dances current name, West Coast Swing, entered into mainstream swing circles in the late 60's. Many credit the current name of the dance to Skippy Blair. Latin styles and hustle influenced WCS from the 70's. Beginners seeing hustle and west coast swing often cannot distinguish them. Current WCS styles vary considerably. Modern WCS can be conservatively upright-postured, smooth and warm, or a funky, hot-partnered jazz dance. It is the social dance that allows for the greatest choice in styles of music

Check the
STUDIO CALENDAR for class times...
We have WCSwing Dance Classes every Thursday night!

Click here for more info...
spinning hair
Dance Louisville is for sure not only the leading studio in our city for WCS but one of the leading groups in the entire midwest!