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Hinky Dinky Parlee-Voo (clip) - Benjamin Lovett

Benjamin Lovett, the New England dancing master who worked closely with Henry Ford, here calls with music provided by the Henry Ford Orchestra.

Life on the Ocean Wave (clip) - Benjamin Lovett

Benjamin Lovett, the noted dancing master who was hired by Henry Ford to promote social dancing, leads Life on the Ocean Wave, also known as the Head Two Ladies Cross Over. The musicians are the Henry Ford's Old-Time Dance Orchestra. Lovett wrote Henry Ford's "Good Morning" square dance books, and this dance appeared in the 1941 edition of that…

Wedding Quadrille (clip) - Gene Gowing

This short clip includes just one time through the figure. The tune is Haste to the Wedding. Gowing does each couple in turn, then two head couples, two side couples, and finally all couples going at the same time. This is the same pattern used in many singing squares such as Solomon Levi or Nellie Bly.

Gowing was a contemporary of Ralph Page,…

Crooked Stovepipe (clip) - Gene Gowing

This is the start of Gene Gowing's recording of a classic New England singing square. Gowing half sings, half chants the figures, in somewhat the same manner-- though less melodiously-- as his sometimes colleague Ralph Page. This site contains other examples of the dance as audio clips and in moving images.

Polly Wolly Doodle (clip) - Gene Gowing

This dance uses the familiar children's song as the basis for a singing square. It's unclear whether caller Gene Gowing is singing the song at the beginning; the quality of the voice certainly differs from Gowing's delivery of the calls.

Alabama Jubilee (clip) - Joe Lewis

Alabama Jubilee was a smash hit for Joe Lewis, and the dance was also recorded by a dozen other callers. This clip illustrates one time through the figure along with a lengthy set of closing calls. This dance is used as the introduction to a film clip showing Lewis's triumphal dance trip to Australia in 1952.

I'll Swing Yours, You Swing Mine (clip) - Les Gotcher

In his prime as a modern square dance caller, Les Gotcher was known as the Hash Master. (For an example of Gotcher in full hash mode, listen to this live recording from 1958.) Here, in an earlier recording, he shows his comfort with traditional square dance figures, calling a visiting couple figure. Traditional callers may note that his calls are…

Forward Eight and Chain Around (clip) - Les Gotcher

The main figure of this dance involves ladies chaining across and along a line, mixed in with grand chains. Unlike the visiting couple pattern of I'll Swing Yours, for example, in which just one couple initiates the action, here Les Gotcher has both head couples and then both side couples moving at the same time. The opening and middle break is the…

If You Knew Susie (clip) - Paul Phillips

Paul Phillips was a popular Oklahoma square dance caller. This clip presents the introduction and the first time through the figure. Phillips calls the figure twice for head gents, twice for side gents, and then finishes with a break that is a variation of the opener. There are at least half a dozen square dance recordings of this tune with…

Uncle Steve's Quadrille (recording)

The first audo file contains instructions for the dance; it is followed by two music files with calls for the first and second figures.Detailed information about this dance, as published in Elizabeth Burchenal'sFolk-Dances from Old Homelands (1922) can be found here; information about the recording, Victor 35739, can be found here. Victor…

Gene Gowing - photo

Gowing was a contemporary of Ralph Page. Unlike Page, who stayed in the Monadnock region of southwestern New Hampshire where both men grew up, Gowing spent time in Hollywood and attempted to bring traditional square and contra dance to sophisticated audiences in New York and Florida. More information is in the Gene Gowing Collection at the…

Gene Gowing - album & label

Album jacket and record label for Gene Gowing recording

Paul Phillips - record album

This is the record album and label for "If You Knew Susie" by Paul Phillips.

Paul Phillips - photographs

The first photo is a portrait. The second photo shows Paul Phillips at the microphone. In the third photo, it looks as though he is one of the dancers; note the similarity of the shiny dark shirt. The final picture shows him painting.

Jimmy Clossin - card, biography, flyer, letter, news story

Jimmy Clossin was an influential Texas caller who unfortunately never recorded commercially. (This Square Dance History Site would dearly love to post clips from live recordings—please contact us if you know of any.) Shown here are several items: • his business card • a letter in which he outlines his terms to call for a club…

Jimmy Clossin - photos

A collection of photos showing Jimmy Clossin at Camp Ihduhapi, Loretto, Minnesota, August 27 - September 4, 1950. Other instructors at the camp, which was sponsored by American Squares magazine, were Charley Thomas, Ralph Piper, and Fred and Mary Collette.

Jimmy Clossin, producer - square dance instrumental music

Although he never recorded albums featuring his calling, Jimmy Clossin did produce recordings of instrumental music. These clips come from Square Dances without Calls (1940), with music by the Blue Bonnet Playboys. The first clip is Ragtime Annie; the second one is billed as Two Step and Waltz Circle Mixer, a combination of Down Yonder alternating…

Jimmy Clossin - record album

Cover and label of instrumental album produced by Jimmy Clossin

American Squares Summer School, 1

American Squares magazine sponsored a series of summer dance camps for eager square dancers. Faculty included Jimmy Clossin, Ralph Piper, Charley Thomas, Fred and Mary Collette, and Luke Lukaszewski.Items in this collection include:• Brochures advertising camps for 1950 and 1953• An ad for the camps, from the magazine (1952)See additional…