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Items from "MWSD": 326

Reach for the Stars - British callers

This singing call was made for promotional purposes by the British Association of American Square Dancing Clubs (BAASDC) in 2001. It features seven top British callers calling to two squares. The Association counts American Mildred Buhler as its "original patron," back in the early 1950s. Further information about the British Association is here…

In My Adobe Hacienda - Don and Marie Armstrong

Recorded live, Don and Marie Armstrong call a singing square. The tune was recorded by such country artists as Hank Snow, Gene Autry, and Bob Wills & His Texas Playboys.

Don Armstrong - progressive squares

Don Armstrong calls a tip that moves dancers from one square to another. At the start of the clip, he alerts dances how this will be done and warns them that when they reach the outside of the hall they will need to do a frontier twirl / California twirl to face back in again. Apparently, some of the dancers missed that information, as you hear him…

Marie Armstrong - patter

Patter tip called by Marie Armstrong, Kittery, Maine, October, 1960. There are some problems with the original tape, resulting in a 5-second gap at 1:48 and a 7-second gap at 2:50. Rather than edit those out, we have left them in place so listeners can fill in the blanks themselves and keep the timing of the original in its entirety. Marie followed…

Mountain Dew (clip) - Marie Armstrong

Marie Armstrong, recorded live at the Downeast Western Square Dance Club in Kittery, Maine. Immediately before this, Marie called a patter tip.To hear the lyrics for Mountain Dew used in a different sort of square, watch Bill Litchman calling a dance by Colorado caller Marvin Shilling, Sally Goodin and a Dosey Doe.

Trail of the Lonesome Pine - Don & Marie Armstrong

Don and Marie Armstrong call Trail of the Lonesome Pine. Recorded live at the Downeast Western Square Dance Club in Kittery, Maine.A clip of Don's commercial recording of this dance can be found here, and a search on this website will reveal additional examples:* Video, called by Bill Litchman at Dare To Be Square, Brasstown, NC* Video, called by…

Mildred Buhler demonstration group

Contributor Paul Moore writes: "In the late 1940's through the early 50's there was a very popular caller in Northern California named Mildred Buhler. The film was Mildred calling to the demonstration group she had in NorCal. When her husband was transferred to London, Mildred took along her calling equipment and called there. She established the…

Red Warrick - Dip and Dive (clip)

The dip and dive figures appear in many variations in the square dance repertoire. One common singing square has the figures set to the tune Redwing, while other callers chant the figures to Little Brown Jug. Here, Red Warrick chants the figures in a steady, rhythmic patter that does not fit the phrase of the music. Other examples of the dip and…

Red Warrick memorabilia

A series of artifacts associated with Red Warrick

Red Warrick - Heel and Toe (clip)

Texas caller Red Warrick, on a rare recording on the Dude label, with music by Till's Square Dance Band. (See related materials here.) The tune is Golden Slippers, but this recording provides an excellent example of calls that are not phrased to the tune. For a caller of traditional New England material, this would be heresy, but Warrick is…

Too Old To Cut the Mustard (clip) - Cal Golden

This is an excerpt; a complete recording can be found here.

Barnacle Bill (clip) - Cal Golden

Cal Golden was a prominent modern caller; another audio clip on this website shows him at the giant 1950 Santa Monica square dance, being introduced by Lloyd Shaw. He was a caller with deep Arkansas roots who called in all 50 states.See this entry on Vic and Debbie Ceder's website for more information and a photograph. The Ceders write: "The term…

Les Gotcher - caller talk, 1962

Talk given by Les Gotcher to Tri-State Callers Association (New England) in March of 1962. Les emphasizes the importance of callers understanding the action of each call and describes early forms of diagramming. He also talks about tempo, timing and ends (beginning at about 14:22, three quarters of the way through) with a discussion of the call…

Oh By Jingo (clip) - Bill Castner

A detailed cue sheet with complete calls and descriptions is available.Wikipedia: "Oh By Jingo!" is a 1919 novelty song by Albert Von Tilzer with lyrics by Lew Brown. The song was featured in the Broadway show "Linger Longer Letty", and became one of the biggest Tin Pan Alley hits of the post-World War I era.An internet search will turn up versions…

Put On Your Old Grey Bonnet (clip) - Charley Thomas

Charley Thomas was a vendor of records and books for squares and contra dances. He founded American Squares magazine after World War II, and edited it until it was purchased by Frank Kaltman and Rickey Holden. Jim Mayo calls a MWSD tip to this tune here.

TAMinations - animated MWSD diagrams

This website offers animated diagrams illustrating all the calls in the various CALLERLAB programs from Mainstream through C-3A. If you're a traditional or MWSD dancer encountering an unfamiliar term, you can see it unfold here step-by-step. Each animation is accompanied by the CALLERLAB definition and notes on styling. The example linked here is…

Ralph Sweet's Personal Square Dance History

This is a 2005 presentation by Ralph Sweet to NECCA (New England Council of Callers Associations), a group of MWSD callers. Reviewing his own interest in this activity provided Ralph with an opportunity to examine trends and challenges faced by square dancers over the past six decades.Ralph's interest in squares and contras dates to the 1940s, and…

MWSD - The First Ten Years

This article by Jim Mayo looks at the first ten years of what is usually called Modern Western Square Dancing. Jim traces the development of the activity in detail, citing specific callers and their influences, and illustrating his comments with links to audio files of live recordings made during the 1940s and 1950s.Jim is the author of Step by…

Ed Gilmore - Q&A, 1962 - part 4

This is a discussion with noted California caller Ed Gilmore, recorded October 21, 1962, at a meeting of the Tri-State Callers Association, an organization of professional MWSD callers from Maine, New Hampshire, and Massachusetts. Gilmore discusses all manner of items connected to square dancing, illustrating his comments with examples of calling…