The Essential List of Modern Western Square Dance Songs! (So Far)

Below is an essential list of modern square dance hoedowns and modern western style singing call recordings that are the most popular in today’s square dance music. The selections are currently called at local square dances and at festivals and even the National Square Dance Convention dances, and these are currently performed by callers worldwide.  Some of these music selections have square dance choreography that were much more simpler during the earlier years of the modern square dance craze, and as years progressed, with the establishment of standardized lists and the formation of various national organizations created an equal environment nationally that set the bar for modern square dance.

With the creation of the Advanced and Challenge levels of dance, choreography became more involved and all callers added their personal choreography touches to many of the singing call breaks and this is one of the characteristics that differ from the the traditional style of square dance. The choreography that was written and performed by the square dance caller on the flip side set became married to that particular song.

Today, however, more calls are used by callers within the song and some may change the choreography throughout the entire piece. This is a departure from the early days of modern western square dance.

New releases will continue to add to the great essential list of most popular square dance music. What is listed here is a compilation of classic and highly accessible and usable music for a caller to reference as “great square dance music” and for performing in a square dance club setting.

One thing is for certain, over the years, square dancing has become more sophisticated and modern !

 

Essential Modern Western Hoedown Square Dance for Patter Calls:

Excelerator Special Chaparral 103
D. X. Land High Hat 650
Alpine Hoedown TNT 184
Jailhouse Jump ESP 429
Hot ‘n Sassy Rhythm 303
Take One Chaparral 101
Rock Island Ride Red Boot 233
Sugarfoot Rag Grenn 12201
BLT Hoedown ESP 428
Picker Patter Ranch House 103
Golden Eagle Grand March Chaparral 110
Boogie Hoedown Royal 426
Stay A Little Longer Kalox 1178
Cindy Blue Star 2009

 

Essential Modern Western Square Dance Singing Calls:

Beautiful Noise Cross Country 509
Small World (Grand Weave the World) Wild West 42
Amarillo By Morning Rhythm 147
Tulsa Time Chaparral 305
Some Broken Hearts Never Mend Rhythm 115
Square Dance Is On Lou Mac 142
Gentle On My Mind Wagon Wheel 113
Jackson Kalox 1079
Hello Mary Lou Chaparral 3513
My Beautiful Day Royal 246
Pink Cadillac Red Boot 3017
Oh Lonesome Me Rhythm 183
Sittin’ On Top Of The World Chinook 72
Mack The Knife Grenn 12135
It’s A Sin To Tell a Lie Blue Star 1992
Summer Sounds MacGregor 2051

 

 

 

 

Mission Statement: The purpose of this post is to create a greater visibility of the square dance activity for future dance population growth on a national and local level. The information provided here serves as a source for square dance caller training, education, and perspectives on dance. Future articles will be developed to improve the programs of square dancing and how those learning to square dance call can help contribute to the preservation of both modern western square dancing and traditional square dancing and to aid in the growth of the square dance activity.

Advertisements

Methods to Advance Your Square Dance Calling Ability

Since it is National Square Dance Month, I thought it seemed like a great idea to make a list of ideas that might inspire you and would improve your calling skills and allow you to sharpen your axe and head for the square dancing woodshed. The following square dance caller education tips are some great ways to implement various methods and practice habits to make your square dance calling more proficient. As with most things that require practice, a “little at a time a lot of the time” is the best recommended approach:

  • Create a schedule for practice time
  • Create a structured dance program that you can call anywhere
  • Follow that program in practice sessions daily
  • Practice in front of a mirror
  • Practice without any music
  • Practice with music
  • Practice with a metronome or drum machine
  • Practice with another caller
  • Read caller articles and ideas and choreography from local and national resources
  • Take an oral “recitation test” of your memorized choreography as quickly as you can and record it
  • Meet with a local state and national square dance caller’s association
  • Take a voice lesson or two with a vocal coach
  • Learn to play a musical instrument
  • Participate in local state, regional and national square dance conventions for callers
  • Set a few minutes a day for moving checkers
  • Practice square dancing in your head
  • Go to a square dance
  • Take lessons from another square dance caller to advance yourself a dance level
  • Learn a new singing call each week and tape record it
  • Practice one patter tip 3 times with 3 different hoedowns that vary musically
  • Practice sight calling “mental image”
  • Combine memorized modules and then force yourself to change the setups and get outs 3 different times
  • Attend a caller’s school or seminar
  • Have a dancer evaluate your calling
  • Try calling a tip without any music, record it and critique it (without any music)
  • Record a practice tip and critique it
  • Have a square dance caller evaluate your calling
  • Purchase a few new square dance calling releases
  • Attend a class for beginners in music at your local community college
  • Enlist a “mentor” or square dance caller coach to help you who is experienced and knowledgeable
  • Listen to other callers and take 2 important ideas/approaches and apply that to your calling
  • Recruit a square of friendly and enthusiastic dancers to allow you to practice your calling upon from time to time

I believe that anyone can learn to square dance call if they work at it. There are so many different niches in the activity, whether you are looking to call square dance parties locally, the Advanced and Challenge square dance levels, or perform on a national scale.

Call Shaun Werkele at 303-250-4735 if you have any questions, or if you need any suggestions on how to get started in learning to square dance call!

Have a great day!

 

 

 

Mission Statement: The purpose of this post is to create a greater visibility of the square dance activity for future dance population growth on a national and local level. The information provided here serves as a source for square dance caller education and perspectives on dance. Future articles will be developed to improve the programs of square dancing and how those learning to square dance call can help contribute to the preservation of both modern western square dancing and traditional square dancing and to aid in the growth of the square dance activity.