This video was passed on to me by Jojo Diggs earlier last month and not until now did I get a chance to start watching this conference from 1999. The video is from House Dance Conference August 1999 which has some early pioneers of house dance representing the spiritual expression. Sadly a few of these early pioneers of house dance (DJ David Camacho and Willy Ninja) have left this life but their spirit lives on through the music and the dance. Other house dance cats such as Archie Burnett, Bravo, Frank Thomas, and more spread their knowledge and inspiration about the dance itself!
As Archie Burnett says, “It’s about the music itself, ya know its about the music, it’s about the vibe, it’s about the pleasure…keep the spirit alive and keep the spirit going. You may not have a job, you may be down, but they can’t take your dance from you, they can’t take your music from you.”
The message throughout the video is keeping the dance and music a pure, spiritual feeling. Not dancing for anyone’s approval, to be popular, or to seek money but for the true universal love of dance. Many of the stories these innovators and pioneers share talk about the block parties where people would dance universally no matter what the style was, even at times there was no specific name. It was just DANCE!
Our hope is through watching this video of House Dance Conference 1999, you will gain a better perspective on what DANCE really is and how it can be used. Also we hope you start to do more research not just on the House (Freestyle / Lofting) dance culture, but on DJ’s, cultures, and other styles of street dance! Seek the people who have the knowledge and expand your mind. Keep Stepping!
For more information on Innovators and Pioneers of Freestyle Dance, make sure to check out this blog post from Conrad Rochester:
“First things first …
There are so many genres of dance that encompass what many call “House Dance.” Several Elders from the Dance Community along with myself, call it Freestyle or Free Spirit Dance that is done to all kinds of music. Just for the record the information in this blog relates to this Freestyle dance that many now call “House Dance” ONLY. For detailed history on other Urban Freestyle Dances (Waacking, Popping, Locking, Voguing, B-Boy, etc.) see other Dance Community Elders and pioneers of that particular style.
So, the question that’s been coming up lately is: Who started all of this?
Did it happen at the Garage, did it happen in the 90’s? There are so many people both active and missing from the scene who have made contributions to the dance and it’s current evolution. Just for the record however, there is nothing new under the sun. I learned from watching dancers at the clubs, jams and from kung fu flicks. A lot of my friends also learned the same way. For the new dance generations of today, I suggest that you do your research and double check anything that you consider a fact.
There are many style innovators but few pioneers. (read that statement twice).”