Origin/Name of 1940s dance maneuver, limp leg wave?
November 18, 2012 9:26 PM   Subscribe

WaybackDanceFilter: In a Fats Waller video here (linked to specific time), a dancing man clasps his hands together and moves his leg almost as if it were lame..

I've seen this dance maneuver before somewhere, but can't place it.. does that particular move have a name? I have no background in dancing, and have no idea how I would even search for something visual like dance styles..
posted by Quarter Pincher to Media & Arts (7 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
God knows why I remember this, but it kind of looks like the stanky leg. Doesn't help you with the origin any, though!
posted by sigmagalator at 10:24 PM on November 18, 2012

Could be a variation of a jake leg dance (more here)
posted by Mchelly at 1:14 AM on November 19, 2012

And I came to say that Jake Leg was a condition caused by bootleg alcohol made with Jamaican Ginger, a patent medicine in the early 20th century.

My Dad used to drive us to school and we'd see guys schlepping down the street, dragging a leg behind them, and he'd say, "Look at that poor bastard. He's got Jake Leg, probably caused by syphilis."

My Dad, and excellent education in an excellent guy.
posted by Ruthless Bunny at 7:58 AM on November 19, 2012

We did something similar to this in my Jamaican dance class.
posted by lettuchi at 8:43 AM on November 19, 2012

In my Lindy Hop class, we call this the "broken leg." But Bojangles Robinson here is truly a master of the broken leg...this almost feels like his own move.
posted by Bluestocking_Puppet at 9:24 AM on November 19, 2012

P.S. On closer inspection, it looks like he's doing a combination of the broken leg and a "Suzie Q," which involves putting one foot in front of the other, shifting on the heel of your back foot and the ball of your front foot, and moving to the side, traditionally. This is kind of a guess.
posted by Bluestocking_Puppet at 9:34 AM on November 19, 2012

Someone would have to do the research to nail down the possible Afro-diasporic connections here, but this immediately made me think of a version of the Cuban rumba columbia dance where a solo male dancer pretends to have a limp that is then cured through the power of the rumba.
posted by umbĂș at 12:01 PM on November 19, 2012

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