Country Dancing

Looking Back


As I have stated before, inspiration for my articles can come from anywhere. For this month, it came to me as I was cleaning out my desk, when I found a microcassette labeled “line dance.” For those of you who might be too young to know what that is, I will explain by looking back at recording technology.

Microcassettes are small cassettes used in several devices, such as land-line telephone answering machines and hand-held miniature recorders. I started teaching line dance thirty years ago, long before the computers, internet access, and smart phones of today’s world.

When I found this microcassette, I had no idea of the journey back to the past that it would take me down. I found my old mini recorder/player and sat down with pen and paper, knowing what I would listen to would inspire this article.

I heard my voice giving line dance steps during a class I was taking at the Dusty Armadillo. There is no date notated; however, after contacting Elane (one of my agents; please see my January 2022 article for more details on her) we determined that recording was from about fifteen years ago when Elane first took me to the Dusty.

Originally when Elane started going there, she wanted to learn more line dances, so she enrolled in my classes in Sharon. I had been teaching line dance for about fifteen years, but only in recreational/fitness venues; not in social places like bars. I thought I knew a lot about line dancing until Elane and I went to the Dusty.

As I sat listening to this recording, it took me back to those days; I would learn the dance from their instructor; then I would walk outside, use my cell phone to call my home phone and leave myself a message on my answering machine with the line dance step instructions! When I got a little bolder, I would either call myself from inside the bar or take my mini-recorder and speak into that during and after class. I don’t remember if the instructors distributed hard copies of the step sheets; if they did, it would have saved me a lot of time!!

There was a total of eleven dances on that microcassette tape; seven of those I taught many times over the years. I have never figured out what the name of the dance is for three others, so I couldn’t find the corresponding step sheet. The final one, I have the name of the dance, but for some reason, have never taught it.

Elane and I enjoyed quite a laugh looking back to our times at the Dusty; especially since now I can use my phone to log on to a website and search for any line dance to find the step sheet. Back then, I had to learn the dance, dictate the steps, then listen to the playback and type my own step sheets! You have no idea how much easier it is for anyone starting out learning and teaching line dance with today’s technology!!

Here’s the first line dance I learned at the Dusty:

Country As Can Be

Here’s a dance that was on my recording that I recently taught to my seasoned beginner’s class:

Baby Likes to Rock It

Dori Yez teaches Country Line Dancing at these Ohio SCOPE Centers: Howland on Monday evenings (Seasoned Beginners) and Wednesday evenings (Improver & Intermediate) plus the same level in Cortland on Friday afternoons. Due to room size and attendance, Dori can no longer accept new students in any of her classes. There is a waiting list for a new “novice/beginner” class.

Recommended for you