What's four on top rhythm
Which dance goes with the song? [Infographic] 😍
What to do if you want to dance in pairs and just can't hear which dance goes with which song?
Is the rousing song a cha cha cha, a foxtrot or a disco fox?
If you know this problem, from now on you should always have the Infographic "Which dance goes with which music?" have at hand. Here you can see the musical characteristics of the 11 most popular couple dances 💃🏻🕺 and you can find out which dance is best for you in just 3 steps.
Before we explain the 3 steps to recognizing the right dance, we have one Note particularly important:
Don't let yourself be stressed! In the beginning it is completely normalthat you don't immediately hear what dance it is about and even advanced couples often have problems with it.
But you shouldn't let it spoil your dancing fun! It is like so much in life Recognizing music is a matter of practice.
If you follow our simple guide, you will quickly develop a certain routine. In the future you can then with one good feeling on the surface go and be sure that you are putting the right dance on the floor.
Step 1: recognize the time signature
As soon as you hear a song you'd like to dance to, you should ask the question firstwhat time signature it is. But what actually is a clock and what different types are there? In order to be able to answer this question, we first have to take a step back.
The basic musical unit: beats 🥁
Every piece of music consists of beats. These are also called beats 🥁 and are the smallest musical unit. You can recognize them relatively easily by rhythmically entering the Hands clap.
Normally you do this automatically with every beat (exceptions are particularly fast tracks, where you often only clap your hands on every second beat).
The decisive musical unit for dancers is the beat, which is composed of a certain number of beats. Usually a measure consists of 3 or 4 beats. One also speaks of Three quarters- and from Four-quarter time (short: 3/4 and 4/4 time). Another important time signature in dance music is the 2/4 timetypical of samba and argentine tango. If you can recognize these three time signatures with certainty, you are already a big step further in choosing the right dance.
But how do you know whether it is a 2/4 time, a 3/4 time or a 4/4 time? The answer is very simple (at least in theory):
Most of the songs will have the first beat of a measure particularly emphasized. Now all you have to do is count. As soon as you hear the accented beat, say "one" and keep counting to the next accented beat. If you have counted to “two” until the next intonation, it is a 2/4 time. If you have counted to “three” before the next stressed “one” comes, the piece is 3/4 time. The most common time signature is the 4/4 time, which logically occurs when you count to “four” before the next accented beat can be heard.
In the infographic you can see that most of the dances are characterized by a 4/4 time signature are. These include the Discofox and Salsa. The time signature alone does not help us in choosing the right dance in this case. However, if you find out while counting that a bar only consists of 3 beats, you can at least be sure that it is either a slow waltz or a Viennese waltz. In order to be able to decide which of the two dances is the right one, we have to use another musical characteristic here as well.
Step 2: determine the pace
However, it is not always as clear as in this example and it is made more difficult that the Speed of a song is a very subjective criterion is. What feels like a leisurely foxtrot for one person may sound more like a disco fox for another. Who is right now?
To convert the felt tempo into a tangible value, let's go back to the beats 🥁. As you already know, these are the smallest musical unit. When dancing, the tempo is defined by how many of these beats there are per minute. The English term beats per minute (BPM) is used in this context. In our infographic you can see which dance fits which tempo.
With this knowledge you can try one small test run start: Start a song at home that you've always wanted to know about what you can dance to and first determine which time signature it is (see step 1: Identifying the time signature).
Then you count how many beats in a minute (TIP: You can also only count the beats for 10 seconds and then multiply the result by 6 to determine the BPM value). Then you will know for sure with the help of the infographic which dance is the right one for your title.
This method is completely waterproof (in most cases) 💧 but has one crucial catch. If you would like to dance to a song at a ball or a party, you usually don't have time to calmly count the beats per minute. And that's not necessary, because over time you will develop a feeling for how fast a song is.
It is therefore sufficient to know, for example, that a samba is danced to very fast music (up to 120 BPM or 2 beats per second), while an Argentine tango is rather leisurely (as a rule, an Argentine tango has a maximum of 60 BPM , so only 1 beat per second).
So that you can quickly get a feel for the approximate tempo of pieces of music, we give you a simple but effective tip.
Tip: This is how you can easily determine the tempo of a song.
Pick out 3 to 4 favorite songs at different speeds that you can sing along to in your sleep and determine their tempo using the method described. Our brains have the amazing ability that we can almost automatically play back songs that we have heard very often in our lives at the right speed.
If you want to estimate the tempo of a piece of music, you can Your favorite songs now as a comparison draw in. For example, if you hear a track whose tempo reminds you of your teenage hit “Smoke on the Water” by Deep Purple, you will know that it is around 115 BPM and that you can dance a Cha Cha Cha on it.
In the beginning, this process is very conscious and takes a long time. Over time, however, you will find that your brain is 🧠 recognizes faster and fasterwhich pace is currently running and automatically suggests the right dance for you. As I said, practice makes perfect here too!
And let's be honest: Is there any better exercise than listening to good music and dancing to it with your partner?
Step 3: pay attention to the rhythm
If you already have a little more dance experience, it is worthwhile to deal with step 3 as well. This is about on musical peculiarities to pay attention to. An important reference point for dancers is above all that Rhythm of a song, because this often corresponds to the basic step rhythm of a dance or at least closely resembles it.
The first two steps are particularly suitable for beginners in order to choose the right dance for a piece of music. If you want, you can limit yourself to recognizing the time signature and then determining the approximate tempo of a song. With a little practice, you'll be right with this method in the vast majority of cases.
But what exactly is rhythm? In simple terms, it can be said that it is the time distribution within a bar. The rhythm describes the length of time of the notes in relation to the others. A “Long” tone (also abbreviated as “L”) always takes half a bar (in 4/4 time two beats) and one “Faster” sound (is abbreviated as “S”) is always twice as fast (one beat in 4/4 time).
For dancers there are also the so-called "And times" (is abbreviated as “+”), which in turn are twice as fast as a “fast” tone (so they only last half a beat).
With a little practice you will Hear different rhythms with pieces of music: For example, if a song has a 4/4 time signature and all beats are the same length, it is very likely to be a Discofox, because every step is the same length here as well.
If you always hear a long tone (L) and then two quick notes (S) in a rather calm piece, this in turn indicates a rumba, whose basic step consists of a long sideways step (L) and then a quick forward and backward rocking (SS) exists. The better you know and internalize the basic step rhythms of the different dances, the easier it will be for you to decide on the right dance over time.
In case of doubt, you can now use our Infographic as a reminder refer to it and look again to see which dance is being danced in which rhythm. With a little practice you can even save the first two steps (recognize time signature + determine tempo) and start dancing right away.
And now? Practice, practice, practice!
If you have read this article carefully to this point, you are a big step further. You now have the theoretical knowledgeto find out which dance goes with almost every song. But it is also true that theory is only one side of the coin.
Now it's time to practice, practice and practice again! Because all your knowledge is unfortunately of no use to you if you do not apply it in practice.
So it's best to turn on a few songs right away and try to find out which dance it is with the help of our infographic. Then the next time it comes down to it, you'll already have one certain routine develops and knows what to do.
Finally one more important note for advanced dancers: If you already have a lot of dance experience or have a very good musical ear, our 3-step explanation may seem a bit too detailed or technical. After all, dancing is about feeling the music and not first using a mathematical method to determine the time signature and tempo.
And of course you are right: If you go dancing regularly, you no longer consciously think about all these steps, but “feel” the music. If you are already at this level, you should of course not start now to analyze every song in the future.
Our goal at Doodance is that everyone can really do something with our explanations, even if they have never danced in their life. In our online Discofox course for beginners, for example, we derive all figures and even the basic step so easily that even an absolute beginner understands what is important.
We pursue the same goal with our blog: We want to make people dance and don't discourage it with complicated explanations.
There are so many chilling stories and prejudices about dancing and far too many people feel that they are completely talentless and never will be able to. This is nonsense, because with the right explanations anyone can learn to dance. And it's worth it, because dancing is one of the most beautiful things two people can do together! 🌟💕
For dance beginners, the following applies: Dare to do it! The fear of putting the wrong dance on the floor should by no means paralyze you. Just follow our three steps to choose the right dance and don't get stressed if it takes a little longer at the beginning. If you have stuck to the method described for a while, you will find that at some point this process takes place completely subconsciously and you immediately know (or feel) which dance is being played.
Drums photo by Clem Onojeghuo on Unsplash
Piano photo by Isaac Ibbott on Unsplash
Learn to dance Discofox now!
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