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Old 08-02-2008, 04:43 PM   #1
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Speed of light

Do you like drums that beat faster than the men's fancy dancer's can dance?

Does your drum beat at 200 rpms for fancy dance contests?

Is faster better?
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Old 08-02-2008, 06:07 PM   #2
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You mean while singing gourd too? lol, JK.
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Old 08-03-2008, 04:51 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by SmokeEater View Post
You mean while singing gourd too? lol, JK.

Okay. Go ahead and throw that into the mix because there is a current trend with southern singers to sing almost every gourd dance like they are the final four songs.
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Old 08-03-2008, 06:38 PM   #4
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Do you like drums that beat faster than the men's fancy dancer's can dance?

Does your drum beat at 200 rpms for fancy dance contests?

Is faster better?
200 rpms (revolutions per minuite) or 200bpm (beats per minuite) LOL! Got ya!

First of all, I don't think a powwow drum can consistantly do 200 bpm. Maybe 120 or 140 bpm but not 200.

200bpm is more then 3 beats per second. Almost a rumble! That's faster then smoke dance!
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Old 08-06-2008, 08:03 PM   #5
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wow..ya dood....lol.. But I think a good fast speed torwards the end should suffice..but not TOOO fast because who can dance to that...Ol' skool style...and as for the gourd dance, shoot most of the time people sing that last set right in the beginning of the dance anyway...goofy.
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Old 08-06-2008, 11:09 PM   #6
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What about singing like that to a southern straight or tradish? Can you imagine? *L*
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Old 08-09-2008, 02:22 PM   #7
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What about singing like that to a southern straight or tradish? Can you imagine? *L*
Its a pain in the butt...thats what it is!
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Old 08-18-2008, 05:08 PM   #8
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This brings up a good thought that I have tossed around with my singers over the years... I think personally, most singers should dance, whether a little or a lot, they need to know what it feels like when the beat gets uncomfortable to dance to... and unless they have been there, they don't think about it.

One pretty common problem with new groups is the tendency to rush the beat, the "oh boy, I'm actually drumming" takes over and they get faster and faster, to the point that they lose their dancers.

I always thought a good rule of thumb was to watch your dancers, if they are dancing, you're doing it right, if they are just walking or shuffling around the arena, you might be needing to slow down!

I know when you're a singer that's your main responsibility, but when you get the opportunity to dance, do it... it'll make you a better singer!

Just my 49 cents on the subject...

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Old 08-18-2008, 05:23 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by WhoMe View Post
Do you like drums that beat faster than the men's fancy dancer's can dance?

Does your drum beat at 200 rpms for fancy dance contests?

Is faster better?
faster is not always better . . . but if it makes my heart skip a beat . . . bring it on. besides, anything "Fancy" is great
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Old 08-18-2008, 06:26 PM   #10
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What about singing like that to a southern straight or tradish? Can you imagine? *L*
OK .. i saw this happen last yr at dakota dunes powwow (faster than the speed of light for sr mens traditional) ... it was one of the host drums to boot - should have known better. honestly ... the MC's could hardly keep from laughing ... after the song was over LOL. then the dancers ... ya can tell they was ... unamused

i had to leave ... i couldnt stop laughing LOL ...
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Old 08-18-2008, 06:28 PM   #11
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I've been typing this complaint for a while. It seems SOME younger southern groups sing everything fast and faster. lol. Gourd dance (they tend to sing all sets at same pace), war dance, contest singing including golden age, etc. Its hard to keep up with them that's for sure. I prefer ol' style singing but we have some impressive composers right now and I enjoy the new songs and the energy these young guys have. I just wish they would slow it down a bit.
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Old 08-19-2008, 10:42 AM   #12
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I'm wondering if this maybe isn't coming from the popularity of drum groups and singing competitions. It seems that maybe you had one southern drum (head singer) and maybe a northern drum or two. Everybody got to sing and the head singers could build a powwow's tempo and energy level over time. But with so many drums showing up, the chances to sing are fewer and so everyone's out there constantly trying to outdo the others and be noticed. Of course this doesn't necessarily explain the gourd dance complaints. Though one could argue that those same young guys who are out there trying to get noticed also sit in for the gourd songs as well. But I would still think the head singer should have something to say about that.
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Old 09-12-2008, 12:30 PM   #13
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yea, faster is not always better.....unless you're running late for a contest, you need to speed it up.....LOL!!!!
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Old 09-12-2008, 04:00 PM   #14
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I'm wondering if this maybe isn't coming from the popularity of drum groups and singing competitions?

hobbs,

If it isn't, then it is certainly a major contributor.

My dad is old school. He has a good group of singers but believes you should hit the drum with reverence and let the singing, not the drumbeat, be the primary sound you hear. He enforces this when they set up.

I thought about this and listened to some of the top southern drums. Many top southern drums immediately start with a strong drum beat and jam! This is something I believe we adopted from northern drums.

As I listened, toward the end of the song, I couldn't hear the singers ... only the drumbeat. And the drum sticks were all high in the air in unison.

Hmmmm? I guess there were some wise words in my dads' way of thinking. Well, maybe they aren't one of the top drum groups, but at least they are trying to instill teachings that have been handed down. This should have some value.

___

I sang at a powwow last month in Oklahoma City and was asked by the head singer, a well known Ponca, to start the Men's Fancy Dance contest song. I started at a really slow pace and built momentum. Toward the end, some of the younger singers took over the drumbeat and ended the song at a rediculously unreal fast pace.

It wasn't my fault, well maybe it was, but the head singer asked the person who started the second song to "slow it down."

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Old 09-13-2008, 06:49 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WhoMe View Post
I thought about this and listened to some of the top southern drums. Many top southern drums immediately start with a strong drum beat and jam! This is something I believe we adopted from northern drums.

As I listened, toward the end of the song, I couldn't hear the singers ... only the drumbeat. And the drum sticks were all high in the air in unison.

Someone once told me that when striking the drum the goal should be on pulling the songs out of it, not driving them in. Another of my favorites is that as a singer, your stick shouldn't make more noise than your mouth. Neither of these address the speed issue, but they do address the balance of the song.
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Old 09-15-2008, 07:06 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RedShield View Post
This brings up a good thought that I have tossed around with my singers over the years... I think personally, most singers should dance, whether a little or a lot, they need to know what it feels like when the beat gets uncomfortable to dance to... and unless they have been there, they don't think about it.

One pretty common problem with new groups is the tendency to rush the beat, the "oh boy, I'm actually drumming" takes over and they get faster and faster, to the point that they lose their dancers.

I always thought a good rule of thumb was to watch your dancers, if they are dancing, you're doing it right, if they are just walking or shuffling around the arena, you might be needing to slow down!

I know when you're a singer that's your main responsibility, but when you get the opportunity to dance, do it... it'll make you a better singer!

Just my 49 cents on the subject...

Paselo~
Good point Red!!!
Everyone who sits on a drum should dance so they know how it feels to run 10 second laps around the circle because the drummers are infected with speeditus. Were not dancing the quarter mile in 6.4 seconds for a world record.

I hope you don't mind but I going to use you as an example. Except for that special sneakup you use to catch a dancer off guard as a fun thing, one of your fastest songs is the Happy Song at 120 beats per minute give or take a few. Every time I have tracked that song it has rangened only a bit off 120bpm. Usually only plus or minus a few beats. So we can say your range for that song is 118 to 123 beats per minute. I have also noticed that you will speed the tempo up if the dancers are enjoying the song as they usually do. The ending beats per minute is usually around 130bpm if the crowd is young and in the dance groove. For an older crowd, I have noticed that the tempo drops slightly to keep pace with the dancers. The proof I have is clearly shown in the recording waveform. Every beat peaks with a spike so the beats can be counted on the time line or the BPM can be generated by the peak values which sets the time indacators in Cubase recording software. It's a music thing.

So yes, a drum must watch their dancers and set the tempo so the dancers can handle the footwork. It makes no sense to drive a dancer to heart attack alley on three songs. You want to keep the tempo so the majority of the dancer can stay in the circle and dance with limited rest time.

Remember we are dancing the circle, Not running the Boston marathon.

The drum feeds the dancers and the dancers feed the drum. When the boys around the drum get excited, it's a natural thing to speed up a song. It is done without anyone around the drum noticing it except for the experienced guys who try to hold you back to an even tempo. Easier said then done.
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