Krulwich Wonders...
7:03 am
Sat April 26, 2014

Come Dance With Me

Originally published on Mon April 28, 2014 11:34 am

At the end, shoes fly. This must be a dancers' thing. You go to Urban Dance Camp, Keone and Mari step out onto the gym floor. C2C's "Happy" is in the air, and the pair just ... they just go perfectly crazy. I know this is a sciencey site, and not a place to get giddy with tunes, but hey, it's the weekend, you're here, and this is a blog and I'm allowed to follow my pleasures. And these two dancers? I just want you to see them. I know, I know, it's not what you came for, but give them a chance ...

It's interesting, if you're still with me, to think about how these songs travel. "Happy," the song, comes from a bunch of different places. It features the voice of Derek Martin of Detroit, who used to sing with Duke Ellington's band then worked with Ray Charles, Otis Redding, Marvin Gaye and others in the '50s and '60s. Then (being a science reporter, I'm not sure exactly how these things work; some of you will know better), four DJs from France, who call themselves C2C, heard Derek Martin's tracks, sampled them and mixed in all kinds of crazy beats and vocals to create the very danceable "Happy."

When "Happy" came out (well before Keone and Mari created their dance), C2C released a video. As it happens, C2C's video was also conceived as a dance, created by director Wendy Morgan. Her video is a story about a guy who's been touched by the Lord at a tent revival meeting. He's totally full of the spirit, which he can pass on to anyone, if he can touch them. It's a sacred touch. And he touches. So, if you're curious, here's the same song that Keone and Mari danced to, done completely differently — it's also pretty amazing.

Ah, weekends. When we can dance together.

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.