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In-Depth: Are We Dancers? Understanding Dancing

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As we touched briefly on the subject of music and what it means to try to define and personalize music, now here at DMNW we’re going to try and define what it is to dance. As we focus and cater more to an established fan base, we’re going to focus primarily on styles of dance that are popular, present, and most prominent in the culture today, at least from our perspective.

But before we go down the rabbit hole exploring the EDM dance “forms,” let’s briefly touch on what it means to simply dance. And we hate to take a detour and take a bird-walk but we think it’s important as a writer, musician perhaps, and human to perhaps consider this song, Human, by The Killers.

The chorus was inspired by an Hunter S. Thompson quote that was interesting to say the least. When we contemplate what it means to dance, there are many interpretations some have used the term in a negative light implying that they are a people type who are trained to stay in line and time and follow a set path. I think this author wasn’t trying to make a universal statement, but for lack of a better word, or for times’ sake, he used dancer as an allusion to what he was trying to say.

Here at DMNW, we obviously are advocates for the notion that dance is definitely not a bad thing! We may even suggest that it, like music, may be inescapable in life. When we search the term ‘dance’ in on google the result is either a verb or a noun.

3rd person present: dances; past tense: danced; past participle: danced; gerund or present participle: dancing

  1. move rhythmically to music, typically following a set sequence of steps.
    “their cheeks were pressed together as they danced”

synonyms: sway trip, twirl, whirl, pirouette, gyrate;

  • perform (a particular dance or a role in a ballet).
    “they danced a tango”
  • lead (someone) in a particular direction while dancing.
    “I danced her out of the room”

2. (of a person) move in a quick and lively way

  • move up and down lightly and quickly.
    “midges danced over the stream

synonyms: flicker, leap, dart, play, flit, quiver;

(of someone’s eyes) sparkle brightly with pleasure or excitement.


  • plural noun: dances
  1. a series of movements that match the speed and rhythm of a piece of music.
  • a particular sequence of steps and movements constituting a particular form of dancing.
  • dance steps and movements considered as an activity or art form.
    “she has studied dance with Martha Graham”
  • a social gathering at which people dance.
    “she met her husband at a dance”

synonyms: ball, masquerade, prom, hoedown, baile, disco; a set of lively movements resembling a dance.

  • a set of lively movements resembling a dance
    “he gesticulated comically and did a little dance”
  • a piece of music for dancing to.
    “the last dance had been played”
  • music for dancing to, especially in a nightclub.
  • plural noun: dance musics

After cascading through that plethora of words offered as definitions for the singular term ‘dance,’ we find ourselves almost overwhelmed in a sense. For the term dance seems highly fluid and adaptive depending on the context of the word. It’s strange the fine line words draw. As discussed before in our previous article, the words we write or even speak can be considered music. And to realize that the context can change the entire meaning is truly fascinating – at least to us here at DMNW.

We still advocate that the author who used the term dancer in a negative light wasn’t trying to say anything bad about dancers as a community but rather an inferred definition that could be implied by the context of what he was saying. If you’re interested as to what the quote was you can learn more about The Killers song Human here.

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