Sunday, November 30, 2014
"An All-Night Rave at the Alexandra Palace" -
An all-night 'trad' ball held in the echoing and chilly infinity of the great hall of the Alexandra Palace. Band followed band from 9-30 PM until 7-30 AM the next morning. The audience were dressed almost without exception in 'rave gear'. As the essence of 'rave gear' is a stylized shabbiness, the general effect was of a crowd scene from a biblical epic. To describe an individual couple, the boy was wearing a top hat with 'Acker' painted on it, a shift made out of a sugar shack with a C.N.D. symbol painted on the back, jeans, and no shoes. The girl, a bowler hat with a C.N.D. symbol on it, a man's shirt worn outside her black woolen tights. 'Trad' dancing in the contemporary sense is deliberately anti-dancing. When I first went to jazz clubs, there were usually one or two very graceful and clever couples. But today the accepted method of dancing to trad music is to jump heavily from foot to foot like a performing bear, preferably out of time to the beat. I have no explanation to offer for this unattractive fad, unless it is to underline that they have no connection with the lovers of pop music, all of whom dance rather well in a somewhat mechanical way. Trad musicians have christened these self-made elephants 'Leapniks'.
- George Melly, Revolt Into Style
And then in an old Newsweek article from 1961:
"Among their fans is a teen-ager who. holding a container full of cider, whisky and gin. said the last word on the trad boom recently on BBC TV: "If it really comes to it.'' said the traddist, "I prefer jazz to sex."
Redolent of the classic pill-popping born-again techno head who says they prefer raving to sex...