What is EDM dancing?


Keep Calm and EDMEDM Dancing: More Lifestyle Than GenreWhen it comes to the genre of music known as “EDM”, short for “Electronic Dance Music”, the term is often used as a very wide umbrella term for other sub-genres that include techno, house, dubstep, synth-pop, electro, and even early forms of hip-hop. What was once confined to dusty basements and run down warehouses in seedy parts of metropolitan cities like New York, Detroit and Chicago, EDM has become a mainstream staple, bleeding into pop airwaves and dominating playlists across the world. Gone are the days where EDM events could only be found by word of mouth by being a member of tight knit underground circles. Huge EDM festivals and holiday themed parties snagged headlines yearly, as some of the biggest acts dominated the music tour circuit during the pre-Covid-19 era. Although put on hold because of the pandemic, the festivals and parties may not be as prevalent for the time being but the genre is far from dormant. What many people do not know however, is that EDM is more than just a huge blanket description for artists that cater to bass hungry teenagers, and is more of a lifestyle for the people close to the scene, complete with it’s own dance styles, language, and even dress code. Yes, rave clothes are a thing and can be just as attention grabbing and jaw dropping as you might imagine.B-Boy StanceDating back as far as the disco era, EDM and it’s droves of movers and shakers pioneered a style of dance and attire that has made way for it’s own world. Just as important as the music itself is the dancing that goes with it. Often times these concerts, better known as raves, end up becoming hours or even days long dance marathons. Perhaps one of the earliest known forms of this was break-dancing, which was pioneered in the 70’s by early hip-hop artists who started laying down early EDM tracks using synthesizers and later started using lyrics to rap over these beats, which ultimately gave way to modern day hip-hop. New York was a breeding ground for the break dancing culture, as “B-Boys” flooded the streets with their cardboard and mats and spun on the streets and subways as onlookers stared in amazement. These break dancers often flaunted track suits, thick gold chains, kangol hats, skinny jeans, and neon colored and patterned shirts, not much different than the modern day hip-hop attire – a far cry from the modern day rave clothes sold online at iHeartRaves. This is what makes the genre so intriguing. There are so many different styles that were birthed from EDM and vice-versa, that it’s music and dance styles are all inclusive.The “What”?Shuffling, tutting, flexing, waving, popping, locking, breaking, ticking, and gigging are all words associated with different EDM dance styles. There is the “Hakken” style of EDM dance, which is more catered to the Hardcore subgenre of EDM. This would eventually go on to birth certain styles of punk such as Bad Brains and Black Flag, eventually fusing with a more hip-hop sound and making way for hip-hop artists such as KRS-One. Then you have “Tectonic” dance, which is more synonymous with house music. This is a more traditional EDM sound, and what most people have in mind when using the word “techno”. This would cover artists such as Steve Aoki, and more traditional EDM headliners. There is “liquiding”, which is geared more towards the hip-hop sound, and you even have “jumping” for Jumpstyle.In ConclusionWhen covering the different forms of dance and multiple subgenres of music that come with them, it is very easy to become overwhelmed by the intersecting lines of various styles of music. EDM birthed so many different modern day and past genres of music and styles of dance, that almost all modern popular music acts have roots that can be traced back to the roots of this genre. It’s rich history and the depth of it’s culture should never be overlooked.