ROCK THE BLOCK

Time to Party Downtown at Rock the Block Remix!

Winston-Salem’s annual musical streetfest happens on Saturday, September 22nd, from 11am till 7pm, spanning downtown from Corpening Plaza to Winston Square Park, to the green spot on 4th Street (I think it’s got a name, just hasn’t found a permanent place in my brain to reside), to 6th Street between Trade and Cherry Streets.

We get to rock ‘n’ roll to the sounds emanating from the Rock, Country and Blues stage being sponsored by Ziggy’s.  This artist is very, very happy that we didn’t get the beach music stage dumped on us…..Sorry, apologies to those of you who like “beach music.”  If you don’t know what that is, don’t worry your rock-and-roll heart too much.

“Beach music” owes its heritage to the old 60’s R & B music of the Tams, the Drifters, and the like.  It owes its name to the Myrtle Beach area of South Carolina, where it got tons and tons of airplay.  And back in the day when everybody’s summer vacation included at least one trip to Myrtle Beach, it became the sound track to everybody’s vacation. 

Mind you, the stuff that falls into the oldies-but-goodies R & B category is pleasant, nostalgic stuff.  But then somebody went and wrote songs about beach music……”I LUV beach music…” and “Myrtle Beach Days” come to mind here.
The thing is, they’ve all got the same rhythm, same sound, same dance steps.  The band starts up and it’s like a whole bunch of wind-up toys start dancing all the same steps, a dance they call the shag.

How this set of dance steps got called the shag, I’ll probably never know.  All I know is that once upon a time back in my younger, more foolish days, I knew these 2 guys from England and I took them to a party that had beach music, and a couple girls started talking about shagging in the sand and there was all kinds of back and forth talk about shagging in the sand along with secret behind-the-back chuckles and winks and grins between our two Englishmen….So what was so funny about dancing the shag?  Finally I decided our guys had had enough fun at the girls’ expense, so I  told them: in England, “shagging” is a slang term for having sex.

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