It can be a little tough diving into buying a genre of music that you aren’t well acquainted with, and with old jazz records, since so many artists recorded so many songs, multiple times, it can be hard to know if you are getting the good stuff. Luckily I have done a lot of this already and I can point you to some pretty solid choices – on the internets even! So, by request, here are some good starting points for good music for Lindy Hop & swing dancing.
4 Albums you can’t go very wrong with:
Artists that you should definitely check out:
Chick Webb (often w/Ella)
Slim & Slam
Cats & the Fiddle
In general for good music to swing dance to, you want to find older recordings, (late 30′s through the 40′s) from these artists because many of them recorded for so long that their sound really changed over the years. It can be a little tricky to find songs that are slow enough when you are new, since they played pretty fast back in the day and since most people social danced a little and it was the popular music of the day, it worked out. Luckily though, it is really convenient now to have resources like amazon mp3 and the iTunes store to be able to sample the music and see if it works for you before buying. (and you’d be amazing how much music you can find out about on YouTube!)
Also there is a ton of music that works great for swing dancing that isn’t “Swing Music” per se. There are a ton of old soul records that work great for Lindy Hop, like a lot of the Motown classics etc. In general, any music that swings, works well to swing dance to.
Motown songs that have that swing:
Martha Reeves & the Vandellas
I’ll post some more song/artist recommendations on here periodically, but for now, you may be wondering what I mean when I say that any music that “swings” will work for swing dancing. On one hand, “of course, that is obvious”, on the other hand “what the hell am I talking about?” If you are wondering about that “swing” – check this post out.