On This Page
Here's what you can expect to find on this page.
- Website News. That should be self-explanatory.
- Website Overview. This box gives an overview of the different sections of website, with links to the Introductory page of each section. That page will have links to each page in the section.
- Section & Page Overview. An overview of the section and page, with links to other pages in the section.
Here is the latest website news and a look at what's to come. Please pardon some amount of experimentation; I have to publish the site to be sure of how things look.
- Feb. 24. More updating and underlying improvements. I converted pages from accordion to tabbed text for greater clarity.
- Feb. 14. I'm going through and correcting some construction errors and improving the way certain things are done. This won't be overly visible but should make a big difference over time.
- Feb. 12. I'm working on a section for the Lamprey River Band; it should be up soon.
- Feb. 8, 2020. I just finished a page about Dancing in Maine, with a focus on Old Grey Goose, the Maine Country Dance Orchestra and the origins of some aspects of Maine dance style.
This is a look at the sections of the website. As noted, some of it doesn't exist yet. Material takes the form of stories and articles about specific dances or events, more general articles often with a historical perspective, and sometimes discussions of philosophical and social issues related to traditional dance.Please note that I am not a historian and won’t pretend to be. When I can I do careful research on topics I’m presenting, but generally the presentation will be more informal.
- NH Country Dance. There are two nearly independent parts to the website. This is the Dance website, and it looks at traditional New Hampshire and New England dance: contras, squares, waltzes, polkas, etc. There is also a Music website which presents well over 300 fiddle tunes as well as discussing various topics like learning by ear vs. learning from written music. The NH Country Dance page unites them and has links to the major sections of both.
- New Hampshire Old-Time Country Dance Home. That's this page. The section contains a page giving a general overview of contra and square dancing, and another with a brief New England dance history.
- The Lamprey River Band. That's my band. Besides the fact that it needs a web site, it's a part of many other stories and articles so I decided to put it at the beginning.
- Dancing in the Seacoast Region of New Hampshire. Next we look at dancing in the Seacoast region of New Hampshire, where I have lived for nearly 50 years. I use the stories of how I started dancing and how I learned to call dances to make a number of points about dancing.
- Dancing in New Hampshire & New England. Here we look at dancing in the remainder of New Hampshire and to some extent the rest of New England. We look at the Bradford dance, dancing in Maine, and a variety of other topics.
There will also be a section on philosophical and social issues in the dance, including the role of tradition and change, the role of community, and others. I will also look at some very specific topics such as the sequences of dances used by various callers over the course of the evening. These sections don't exist yet.
Contra & Square Dancing & the Dance Music
This section introduces the material for this website, and why I think it might be of interest. I then present an overview of New England traditional music and dance and some of its history. If you want more detail there are a number of good sources available on the Internet. The Country Dance & Song Society (CDSS) has a page of links that you should find useful.
- New Hampshire Old-Time Country Dance Home. That's this page. Below I discuss the nature of the material on this website and why I think it should be of interest. I also describe the sources of that material.
- An Introduction to Traditional New England Music & Dancing. This page gives a fairly quick overview of New England dancing, including contras and squares, and a look at the music and playing for a dance.
- Historical Look at Traditional New England Music & Dancing. This page looks at the dancing from a more historical perspective, from the prevalence of contradancing in New England to the increased popularity of squares in the middle part of the last century, to the contradance revival of the 1970s and the spread of contradancing to the rest of the country.