Summer Playlist 2015

summerplaylistHappy Summer!  Time to refresh those playlists with some fun summer tunes from the Billboard Top 40!  Here is a list of songs I’ve mixed into my classes to keep them feeling updated.

That’s How We Do – Teen Beach Movie 2:  Super fun and upbeat song – would be great for a tap or jazz combination – currently using it in my 7-10 year old tap class

Drop That – Jacob Plant:  A nice funky electronic beat – fun for tap or hip hop – totally instrumental

You Know You Like It – DJ Snake & AlunaGeorge – have been using this in teen tap

This Feeling – L’Tric: A fun feel-good song – great for warm-ups

I Don’t Like It, I Love It (feat. Robin Thicke & Verdine White) – Flo Rida: My other go-to warm-up song

Fire Under My Feet – Leona Lewis:  A nice moderate tempo for tap or jazz

Fun (feat. Chris Brown) – Pitbull:  Another moderate tempo

Lean On (Remixes) [feat. MØ & DJ Snake] – EP – Major Lazer:  Steady beat for across the floor combos for older students

Cheerleader (Felix Jaehn Remix Radio Edit) – Omi:  This song.  I have a love-hate relationship with it.  The kids love it and it has a nice calypso-y feel to it that makes it fun for tap, so I had to include it.  Be warned – this will be the song that plays over and over in your head when you go home for the night.

Rude (Acoustic) – MAGIC!:  This is from last summer, but I have been loving using the acoustic version for tap.  Such a fun little groove.

Enjoy!

What songs have you been obsessed with this summer?

Warm-Up & Work-Up Playlist

warm up work out playlist

I love starting class with cardio-inspired workouts to get the blood moving before we move into larger movements.

Here are some songs that my dancers love “working out” to! (links open in iTunes)

Pop Music

 

One in a Million – Down With Webster

 

The Spark (ft. Spree Wilson) – Afrojack – These first two songs are lesser known, which means they aren’t overplayed on the radio and the kids don’t know every word, but they still have a great beat.

Hey Brother – Avicii

Timber – Pitbull ft. Ke$ha –  I have a killer tap stamina warm-up to this song for my advanced girls – I get requests for it every week… not sure if the kids like the tap exercise or just listening to the song. 🙂

Weekends!!! – Skrillex (feat. Sirah)

Indie Music

Changing Of The Seasons – Two Door Cinema Club

Luck – American Authors

Further On – Bronze Radio Return

Now I See – Tessa Rose Jackson – a little more laid-back – would be good for light warm-up or cool down

A Few Others

Danza Kuduro (feat. Lucenzo) – Don Omar (oldie but a goodie)

Devil With the Blue Dress On / Good Golly Miss Molly – Mitch Ryder

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NMM: Perpetuum Mobile – Penguin Cafe Orchestra

Today’s New Music Monday is a song that just makes you want to create something:  Perpetuum Mobile by Penguin Cafe Orchestra (link opens in iTunes).

I’ve been using this one in my modern classes during improv and I think it helps set a creative atmosphere in class.  Plus its just fun to listen to!  Enjoy 🙂

Grab it on iTunes:

Perpetuum Mobile - Preludes, Airs & Yodels

As a side note, this song was used in the claymation film “Mary and Max“, which if you’re in the mood for a moving animated movie – watch this (its on Netflix).  Just keep the tissues nearby and don’t say I didn’t warn you.

NMM: Shine Brighter – DJ Earworm

Don’t miss this year’s remix by DJ Earworm – he combined 25 of 2012’s pop hits to create one song… and the kicker is that it actually sounds pretty awesome!  The kids seem to like this one a lot.  My pre-teens ask me to play it each week, and the first week it took them a while to actually focus on the steps in warm-up because they were trying to figure out what this song was!

As of this post, I believe you can still download the song on SoundCloud.

If you love mash-ups like this song, check out more mash-ups here.

Tap Teaching Tip: The Snappy Shuffle

This year I have three classes of 1st and 2nd graders in tap / jazz combination class and we are focusing on increasing the speed and clarity of their tap steps.  I've noticed that they are still doing the large "baby" shuffle — where they use almost their entire leg to swing the foot back and forth to make the sounds.

I was trying to think of a way to help them understand the faster shuffle and we came up with the "snappy shuffle" which we practice during tap barre.  The "snappy shuffle" is a quick shuffle that is small and the dancer uses the knee to do most of the work (lifting the knee up and down as opposed to bringing the whole leg forward and back).

I am having good results so far.  The kids love "going fast" and enjoy the challenge of doing "steps like the big girls/boys".

Now we are working on translating that same "snappy shuffle" into our other steps, like irishes (shuffle hop step) and buffalos (leap shuffle leap).

Here is our tap barre that I use for a warm-up, lately we've been using "He Could Be the One – Hannah Montana to give you an idea of the tempo.

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New Music Monday: Currently Loving…

Short music post today – just wanted to share three songs I’ve been loving lately!

Titanium (David Guetta feat. Sia) – My go-to warm up songs for my older students.  I’ve been using this in tap and jazz classes as it has a nice steady beat and hasn’t been overplayed on the radio yet.

Timshel (Mumford & Sons) – This is a hauntingly beautiful piece that I’ve been using in my lyrical/contemporary classes.  Easy to put emotion into it.

I’m In Here Piano/Vocal Version (Sia) – I can’t help it – I love Sia’s voice.  You might recognize her from “Breathe Me” a few years ago.  I just love the different sound she has. I’ve been using this song in lyrical and jazz class for a cool down.