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Items from "Northern squares": 252

Auctioneer - Ralph Sweet

This is the opening of Ralph Sweet calling his version of Marshall Flippo's classic singing square, Auctioneer. Ralph is calling a basic goal post pattern; compare other versions of the dance and read a full description here. The musicians are the band Swallowtail. Recorded January 15, 2000, at the annual Ralph Page Dance Legacy Weekend, Durham,…

Grandma Slid Down the Mountain - Tod Whittemore

Caller Tod Whittemore with his yodeling square dance, "Grandma Slid Down the Mountain." As Tod says in his introduction, "This is a dance by Ted Sannella... but he never called it exactly like this." (Tod based his dance on Ted Sannella's Presque Isle Eight, which in turn borrowed from Maine caller Rod Linnell's dance, Presque Isle Eighth.) Tod had…

Ted Sannella - photographs

After Ralph Page's death, Ted Sannella was widely regarded as the dean of New England callers. In addition to being one of the most prolific choreographers of squares, contras, and dances in other formations, Ted chaired the Ralph Page Memorial Committee and served on the Governing Board of Country Dance and Song Society. This website includes…

Vermont square dancers - 1950s

A series of photographs, mostly from the big square dance gatherings in Northfield and Montpelier.

Frank Fortune

Frank Fortune with the Myron Colby Orchestra, Bradford, NH

Frank Fortune and the Bradford (NH) Barn Dance

Back in the 1930s and 1940s in many of the villages of New England were held dances referred to as "Barn Dances" or "Round and Square Dances" or "Eastern Barn Dance Style Square Dances". As people did not travel the distances for recreation that we do today many towns had a local group of musicians who supplied the music for these dances, as well…

Two Three Hand Stars (clip) - Frank Kaltman

The tune is Big John McNeil.

Frank Kaltman founded the influential magazine American Squares and (with Dan Wolfert) created the Folkraft record label after World War II.

Farmer's Daughter (clip) - Ed Bossing

Ed Bossing was director of the Rocky Mount Folk and Square Dance Summer School in Denver, and was employed regularly by the Chicago public school system. He authored the Handbook of Square Dancing, and he and his wife spent a sabbatical year (1952) traveling around the country leading workshops.This dance was also collected by Bob Dalsemer in…

Half Way Round (clip) - Rod Linnell

Maine caller with his composition, a singing call set to the RCA VIctor recording of "Back Up and Push." Linnell's version is published in

Lady Round the Lady - George Wade

Played by George Wade and his Cornhuskers. The tune is Lord Saltoun's Reel. You'll note that the introduction to Wade dance recordings is longer than many others.

Northern Lights - Bill Litchman

Dance written by Floyd Parker, Colorado, danced at the 2011 Dare To Be Square dance weekend in Brasstown, NC, called by Bill Litchman. Dance directions are available, as is an audio clip of the original recording. The tune is Blackberry Quadrille.

Northern Lights (clip) - Floyd Parker

You can find a written description of the dance and a video of the dance called by Bill Litchman. The tune is Blackberry Quadrille.

Choc-A-Taw (clip) - Dick Leger

View full record for details.

Silver Bell (clip) - Paul Hunt

music by the Rock Candy Mountaineers

Buffalo Gals (clip) - Piute Pete

Resident caller the Village Barn in New York City

Standard Club Quadrille (clip) - Benjamin Lovett

Benjamin Lovett, a New England dancing master, was hired by Henry Ford and relocated from Massachusetts to Michigan. He recorded numerous albums with the Henry Ford Orchestra, as well as authoring Good Morning, Ford's country dance book.

Rufus! - Rufus Guinchard - Newfoundland fiddler

"Rufus!" is a 30-minute film made in 1990 that celebrates the life and music of Newfoundland fiddler Rufus Guinchard. The film is available online, and is well worth watching in its entirety. Like Medicine Fiddle, the film helps set the music and dance in the context of the broad culture. A dance sequence, filmed in a kitchen, begins at 07:50 and…

Piute Pete - Village Barn

Piute Pete called squares regularly at the Village Barn in New York City. This newspaper columnist took a less-than-enthusiastic view of the proceedings.