Ballroom Dancing

Songs and dances for fathers to dance at their daughter’s weddings and other important occasions. 

My daughter Anna is getting married, and I have been taking dance lessons. The following list is an attempt to match the right dance with the right song, knowing that many dance styles can be used for many different songs. It is also a memory aid, as it can be hard to remember every dance move, especially when you don’t practice every day.

Principles of dancing

  1. Women dance because women like to dance. Men dance because women like to dance.
  2. The man’s purpose in dancing is to make the woman look good.

Foxtrot – 4-4 count that you feel like snapping your fingers to

Song and Band

  • Can’t We Be Friends – Ella Fitzgerald, Louis Armstrong
  • Beyond the Sea – George Benson
  • Love Under the Stars – Gunter Norris
  • Walkin My Baby Back Home – Nat King Cole
  • I’ll Be Home for Christmas – Gold Star Ballroom Orchestra
  • You’ve Got a Friend in Me – Michael Buble
  • Miles Away – Basia
  • I Got Rhythm – Gold Star Ballroom Orchestra
  • Night and Day – Gold Star Ballroom Orchestra
  • Have I Told You Lately That I Love You – M. Buble
  • Nice and Easy – Michael Buble
  • Witchcraft – Frank Sinatra
  • Pink Panther Theme – Gold Star Ballroom Orchestra
  • Night and Day – Ella Fitzgerald
  • Why Should I Cry Over You? – Frank Sinatra
  • Penthouse Serenade – Claude Blouin
  • All of You – Ella Fitzgerald
  • Fly Me to The Moon – Frank Sinatra
  • Kissing the Girls – Gunter Norris
  • Love Dreams – Gunter Norris

Progression

  1. Standard step (L forward 1, R forward 2, side step L and R, 3-4)
  2. Promenade (turn body, L forward 1, R forward 2, turn back to face partner and side together 3-4)
  3. Front/back step (L forward 1), R back (2), side step (L and R, 3-4) x 2

Merengue

  • Eres Asi – Belven

Push-Pull (swing) – 4/4 count, very versatile, gunfighter hand position

Song and Band

  • Centerfold – J Geils Band
  • In the Mood – Glenn Miller
  • Life in the Fast Lane – Eagles
  • Midnight Train to Georgia – Gladys Knight
  • Old Time Rock and Roll – Bob Seger
  • Pretty Woman – Roy Orbison
  • The Wanderer – Dion and the Belmonts
  • Walkin After Midnight – Patsy Cline

Progression

  1. Standard step (L-R-L back-R)
  2. Outside turn
  3. Cuddle turn
  4. Hammerlock turn (L)
  5. Turn out

Rumba – 4/4 count, Cuban, lots of hip action

Song and Band

  • And I Love Her – Beatles
  • Belle Chitara – Andy Fortuna
  • Beautiful Maria – Andy Fortuna
  • Besame Mucho – Trini Lopez
  • Blessed – Elton John
  • Blue Bayou – Linda Ronstadt
  • Blue Light Yokohama – Pink Martini
  • California Dreaming – Mamas and Papas
  • Cuando Me Enamoro – Andrea Bocelli
  • Dark Fire – Strunz and Farah
  • Goldeneye 2003 – Tina Turner
  • Here Comes the Sun – Beatles
  • How Deep is Your Love – Bee Gees
  • I Have Always Loved You
  • Enrique Iglesias
  • I’m Not Giving You Up – Gloria Estefan
  • It’s Now or Never – Elvis Presley
  • It’s Too Late – Gloria Estefan
  • Just the Way You Are – Billy Joel
  • Kokomo – Beach Boys
  • La Puerta – Andy Fortuna
  • La Mentira – Andy Fortuna
  • Love Story (Where Do I Begin?) – Shirley Bassey
  • My All – Andy Fortuna
  • Moscas en la Casa – Shakira
  • Save the Last Dance for Me – Michael Buble
  • Secundo – Andy Fortuna
  • Sitting by the Dock of the Bay – Otis Redding
  • Stand By Me – Ben King
  • Traces of Love – Gloria Estefan
  • Unbreak My Heart – Toni Braxton
  • You are the Sunshine of My Life – Stevie Wonder
  • Your Song – Elton John

Parts

  1. Box step (1-2-3-4 – Quick-Quick-Slow or Slow-Quick-Quick)
  2. Crossover break
  3. 5th position break
  4. Outside break
  5. Outside turn

Waltz

Song

  • Are You Lonesome Tonight – Elvis Presley
  • At Last – Etta James, 1961
  • Caribbean Blue – Enya, 1991
  • Could I Have This Dance – Ann Murray
  • Come Away with Me – Nora Jones, 2002
  • Fascination – Nat King Cole, 1957
  • I Wonder Why – Curtis Steigers
  • If You Don’t Know Me By Now – Simply Red
  • I’ll Be – Edwin McCain, 1998
  • I’m So Lonesome I Could Cry – Elvis Presley
  • Love Ain’t Here Anymore – Take That
  • Moon River
  • Never Loved a Man – The Commitments
  • Only One Road – Celine Dion
  • Open Arms – Journey
  • See the Day – Girls Aloud
  • So She Dances – Josh Groban, 2006
  • Still Crazy After All These Years – Paul Simon
  • Take it to the Limit – Eagles
  • Tennessee Waltz
  • Three Times a Lady – Commodores
  • True Love – Elton John
  • Westlife – Queen of My Heart
  • What the World Needs Now is Love
  • When I Say I Do – Clint Black, 1999
  • You Light Up My Life – Debby Boone

Parts

  1. Box step (1-2-3)
  2. Outside turn
  3. Promenade

 

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