Tag Archives: song

Michael Jackson/Dangerous & Janet Jackson/Rhythm Nation remixes

The King of Pop, Michael Jackson, crushed it at the MTV Music Awards. Here is a remix based on that performance, along with some original twists. Edited for a 2:45 length dance routine.

Janet Jackson is one of the top female music performers of all time. Here is an original remix of the classic Rhythm Nation from the album 1814.

Get more Squirrel Trench remixes at Legitmix

Congrats to Joleen’s Starz of the South

Starz of the SouthA huge congratulations to Joleen’s Starz of the South studio who took home some serious hardware from the NYLA Dance Nationals in Biloxi Mississippi from June 12-15. “Music of the Night” featured a five-minute-plus Squirrel Trench-mixed soundtrack for this production number. In addition to Music of the Night, Starz of the South won in many other categories with routines featuring Squirrel Trench edited and mixed music, including Oceans, a Baseball-themed mix, My Flawz, Egyptian Style, Dirty Laundry, and Crazy in Love. Three additional special numbers were: a remix of Lady Gaga’s Applause, a moving 9-11 tribute, and a NYC street drumming scene. Here are the complete results from Starz of the South’s Nationals.

Here’s what studio owner Joleen had to say:

“We absolutely loved all of our music you created for us. :) Music of the Night won an overall highest scoring group/production and 1st place at Nationals. All of our music sounded amazing and we received great judges comments on all of our mixes and cuts. Thanks again!”

– Joleen Sanders, studio owner
Starz of the South, Vancleave MS,
July 5, 2014

How to find fantastic music that isn’t overused

Happy-New-Years-Fireworks-2014-WallpaperFor all the dancers going to Nationals in the next few weeks, break a leg! I know some studios have already finished their Nationals, but in any case, the 4th of July for many dancers, teachers, and studios means it’s time to start working on music for the upcoming season.

Just thought I’d share this tidbit, that comes courtesy of my girlfriend, dance teacher extraordinaire Lesley Lambert, for finding that hidden gem of a song… you know, that one you hear at a dance comp, and can’t believe that no one else is using this amazing song. Here’s one way to do it:

Go to Spotify or Pandora or iTunes Radio, and play a song that you really like. Then turn it into a radio station, and you’ll have a whole bunch of similar songs, many of which you may have never heard of before. Give them a listen, and pick out the gem for your next routine!

Happy hunting and happy independence day!

Clean your dance, clean your music

Competition season for dancers is here in earnest. This past weekend featured two studios utilizing Squirrel Trench music for their routines at the same competition (27 routines!). We’re thrilled to report a slew of 1st Places, Platinum, High Golds and Overalls were garned by these dedicated and hardworking dancers and choreographers.

Now that we’re in the competition phase of the year, don’t forget to clean your music at the same time you’re cleaning your routines and costumes. If there is a hiccup, jump, skip, mis-matched beat in your music, or section of music that is too soft, or not punchy enough, too fast or too slow, it’s not too late to get it fixed in time for the next regionals competition.

Already, Squirrel Trench Audio has helped dance teachers and studio owners get higher scores for their routines in a number of ways. For one tap number, the dancers were rushing too fast for the music. Solution? Speed up the music. For another studio, the routine was receiving deductions for inappropriate language. Solution? Inappropriate language obscured through clever remixing by Squirrel Trench. For another studio, the music they were using was too soft compared to all the other music being used. Solution? Brought up to current loudness levels by Squirrel Trench through a process known as mastering.

We know that many dance teachers and studios cut their own music. One of the potential pitfalls to self-cut music is that in the course of rehearsing the number five hundred times, any mistakes or hiccups eventually sound normal, just because you become used to hearing it that way. Of course, the judges will be hearing it for the first time, and if there is a hiccup, skip, jump or any other strangeness in the audio, it detracts from the polish you’ve worked so hard to achieve with your students.

So find a friend who can listen to your competition music with fresh ears. If they hear something that doesn’t sound right, send it my way to get it fixed in time for your next Regionals, so that you’ve got it the best it can be in time for Nationals. If you have something that needs fixing, email me at: morriss@squirreltrenchaudio.com

Related articles: Time to Fix Things UpPump Up The VolumeFix Your Music in Time for Nationals

Congratulations to Wikkd Lil Grrrls!

1902765_10152284887868103_160835853_nCongratulations go to choreographer Miss Lesley and the NEDC dancers of Wikkd Lil Grrrls!

Today they performed spectacularly at Hall of Fame’s Worcester regionals dance competition at the DCU Center. Wikkd Lil Grrrls features music edited by Squirrel Trench Audio. This morning the routine won:

  • 1st Place Platinum in their category (Junior Tap Line)
  • 1st Place Overall in Junior Line routines
  • 1st Place Overall Junior tap routine

Wow! It doesn’t get much better than that! Congratulations dancers!

Live Stream • Full Schedule • Routines using Squirrel Trench music

Congratulations to Rhythm Dance Company’s Neon

RhythmDanceCoCongratulations go to Rhythm Dance Company’s senior team tonight; they performed three routines with Squirrel Trench edited or remixed music at Hall of Fame’s Worcester Regional competition held at the DCU Center. Their routine Neon, using a custom Squirrel Trench remix that includes numerous sound effects, was a big winner for the evening, garnering a special Precision Award, scoring a 1st Place Platinum in the category, and winning 4th overall in Senior Large Groups.

Tonight’s performances were:

  • Neon — RDC (Senior Jazz Large Group) — Precision Award, 1st Place Platinum, 4th Overall in Senior Large Groups
  • Werk It — RDC (Senior Hip Hop Large Group) — High Gold
  • Beautiful, Dirty, Rich — RDC (Senior Jazz Trio)

While it is our policy not to share music that is currently being using in competition, in the meantime, you can enjoy the custom remix of Janet Jackson’s Rhythm Nation that Rhythm Dance Company used last year:
https://soundcloud.com/squirreltrench/rhythm-nation-squirrel-trench

Tomorrow’s and Sunday’s performances are scheduled to be live streamed on this web page: http://www.halloffamedance.com/livestream.aspx

The full schedule for the weekend can be found here: http://www.halloffamedance.com/regionals/schedule.aspx?id=442

And a full listing of routines at this weekend’s competition that will be performing with Squirrel Trench audio are listed here.

Break a leg to all of RDC’s and NEDC’s dancers performing tomorrow and Sunday!

Squirrel Trench at Hall of Fame Worcester Regionals

Hall of Fame Dance logoSince both Rhythm Dance Company and New England Dance Centers are competing at Hall of Fame‘s Worcester regionals at the DCU Center this coming weekend (Feb 28-Mar 2, 2014), that means that 27 of the routines will be using Squirrel Trench edited and remixed music.

The performances are scheduled to be live streamed via this link: http://www.halloffamedance.com/livestream.aspx

The full schedule for the weekend can be found here, and routines that will be performing with Squirrel Trench audio are listed below: http://www.halloffamedance.com/regionals/schedule.aspx?id=442

(All times listed as Eastern)
Friday, February 28
4:41p Stage1 Beautiful, Dirty, Rich — Rhythm Dance Company (Senior Jazz Trio) — (Edit)
7:22p Stage1 Werk It — Rhythm Dance Company (Senior Hip Hop Large Group) — (Full Remix)
7:49p Stage1 Neon — Rhythm Dance Company (Senior Jazz Large Group) — (Edit)

Saturday, March 1
10:45a Stage1 Wicked Lil Girrls — New England Dance Centers (Junior Tap Line) — (Edit)
11:39a Stage2 Toy Soldier— Rhythm Dance Company (Junior Jazz Duo) — (Edit)
2:12p Stage2 Americano/Dance Again — New England Dance Centers (Teen Open Solo) — (Edit)
4:47p Stage1 Coronet Man — Rhythm Dance Company (Senior Jazz Solo) — (Mastering for consistency of volume and modernization)
6:42p Stage1 The Dynamo of Volition — New England Dance Centers (Senior Tap Solo) — (Edit)
6:48p Stage1 Human Nature — New England Dance Centers (Senior Tap Solo) — (Edit)
7:18p Stage2 Let The Good Times Roll — New England Dance Centers (Teen Jazz Solo) — (Edit)
7:39p Stage2 Yes Sir, That’s My Baby — New England Dance Centers (Teen Jazz Solo) — (Edit)
7:42p Stage2 Lock My Heart — New England Dance Centers (Teen Jazz Solo) — (Edit)
7:48p Stage2 Vogue — New England Dance Centers (Teen Jazz Solo) — (Remix)
7:51p Stage2 Feet Don’t Fail Shaun Now — New England Dance Centers (Teen Jazz Solo) — (Edit, Mastered, custom track courtesy of the original artists Rhythmic Circus minus taps)
10:28p Stage1 Starlets (Glamour Action) — New England Dance Centers (Teen Jazz Small Group) — (Remix)

Sunday, March 2
7:58a Stage1 Fancy Footwork — New England Dance Centers (Junior Tap Large Group) — (Remix)
9:00a Stage2 (She’s) Hot Stuff — New England Dance Centers (Junior Jazz Solo) — (Remix)
9:12a Stage1 Toy Story — Rhythm Dance Company (Junior Hip Hop Line) — (Remix)
9:38a Stage2 I’ve Got Love — New England Dance Centers (Junior Jazz Solo) — (no edit; as-is)
10:02a Stage2 Sparkling Diamonds — New England Dance Centers (Junior Tap Solo) — (Edit)
11:52a Stage1 Gimme Some Rhythm, Daddy — New England Dance Centers (Teen Jazz Duo) — (Remix)
12:07p Stage1 What Is Jazz? — New England Dance Centers (Teen Tap Trio) — (Remix)
4:31p Stage1 The Audition (Broadway Here I Come) — New England Dance Centers (Teen Musical Theater Line) — (Remix with voiceovers)
5:07p Stage1 Let’s Dance Hezekiah — New England Dance Centers (Teen Tap Line) — (Remix)
6:57p Stage1 Let The Groove Get In — New England Dance Centers (Teen Tap Large Group) — (Edit)
7:01p Stage1 We Came To Smash — New England Dance Centers (Teen Jazz Large Group) — (Edit)
8:58p Stage1 To Be Beautiful — New England Dance Centers (Teen Tap Small Group) — (Remix)
9:32p Stage1 Dirrty — Rhythm Dance Company (Teen Hip Hop Small Group) — (Edit and removal of inappropriate language)

Break a leg to all the dancers performing!

Another happy soloist in Alaska

Just finished remixing a fun mashup of several songs, including Britney Spears’ Work Work, into a unique solo routine for a young dancer in Bethel, Alaska. This unique remix features custom drum and bass additions for an exciting, never-before-heard audio foundation for choreography. Here’s what her mom had to say after listening to the finished piece:

“THANK YOU MORRISS!!!
I love it, and my daughter keeps saying, ‘That is sooo cool!’
It is perfect!”

– Delilah Hodge, dance parent
after hearing her finished custom remix for her daughter’s solo
I’d say mission accomplished!

True dedication: The dancers of Bethel, Alaska

Bethel Alaska aerial viewIn the online world, vast distances can be spanned with a single email. Thanks to the internet, working from Western Massachusetts, I have edited and remixed songs for dancers, not only all over the United States, but also in Australia and Canada.

So it wasn’t too big of a surprise when I got a music remix request from a repeat client who lives in Bethel, Alaska last week. When Delilah Hodge contacted me last year, I noted that she was in Alaska, but didn’t really think much further about it. But when she emailed me for a couple of new songs to be edited and remixed, I was a little bit more curious since my brother and his wife live in Fairbanks, Alaska. Not being completely familiar with the state, I searched on Google Maps to find out how far of a drive it is from Bethel to Fairbanks. You would think that that is a reasonable request to ask of Google Maps, but there is only one hitch…. you can’t! There are no roads from Bethel to Fairbanks, nor from Bethel to anywhere else. The only way in or out of the town is via river or air.

So this got me curious…. what is life in Bethel like? And even more interestingly, what is DANCE in Bethel like? I mean, how many dance students can there be in a town of 6,000 people, where the people are probably outnumbered by moose, and surrounded by miles upon miles of vast frozen tundra? I had to find out, so I asked Delilah to tell me a little bit about her dancers! If there is a dance studio in Bethel, I would like to know what their name is and more about it!

Here is what Delilah told me about dance in Bethel:

“The name of our dance team is Delta Illusion Dance Company. To make a very long story short, our town is extremely transient and if you’re not born here you came up to work. For three years we had a lady teaching dance in our town. She worked full-time at the Dental Clinic, and taught dance classes in the evenings and on weekends. Looking back, I realize how much she truly loved dance because she must have been dead tired after working all day, yet she never got frustrated or upset when children didn’t listen or parents (who knew nothing about dance at that point) complained about the price of tap shoes and leotards.
 
In 2008, the dance teacher asked the parents if they would be interested in forming a competition team. Five parents agreed, although we had no idea what she was talking about. We we lured in by the costumes, the fact that our girls would keep active (which is important in a small town), and the added bonus that we would all get to travel to San Diego. When we got to StarPower in San Diego, we were amazed by the level of dance and intensity the other teams brought. Not to take away from our teacher, but we were recreational dancers with girls who still needed reminders about pointing toes and looking up. That trip opened our girls’ eyes and made them more serious about dance. It made them realize there was more to dance than just going to a class every evening. They were hooked.
 
In 2009 the dance teacher and her husband decided they wanted to move closer to their roots and start a family. We were devastated, but she agreed to do a year of classes/comp routines via Skype. She met us for a comp in Vancouver and that was our last time with her.
 
This part is where the true blessing/kismet/miracle happens. In 2010, four parents were determined to continue dance for our girls but were struggling with figuring out how. One of the parents contacted a studio in Florida she had sent her daughter to for summer camp. The owner of [Studio] in Florida has been an absolute blessing to us! She agreed to have the four girls come down for 2 weeks in the summer and lent us a studio and her two comp team instructors. We have been working with them ever since! Over the years, through pure randomness (or miracles, as I believe they are) We have found other people who help. Two women who live in L.A. help with choreographing and cleaning routines. One of the staff members for our school district took tap from the age of 2 and offered some classes when she was here. She moved in 2012, but this fall we finally got her to come up once a month and instruct. An Optometrist in town has danced since she was little and will help out when she has time. The biggest stroke of luck occurred when we found out that one of our teachers in a tiny village is married to a well-known Russian dancer, who retired after 20 years with the Russian Ballet. We try to fly him to Bethel as often as we can, but as of right now that is one weekend every other month. His wife is talking about transferring to Bethel next year!
 
The four original parents got a business license and pretty much started a dance studio. Although we have no actual studio hence the name Delta ‘Illusion’, our community has been very supportive by letting us practice free of charge in school gyms and cafeterias along with the gym at our local college. We do the the comp team which has traveled to many cities in the lower 48, but we also offer dance classes and a week long bootcamp for the community to give back and spread our love of dance. When teachers are not in town, one of the parents holds practices and cleans routines. You would be surprised at how much we have learned about dance, considering only one parent had any dance experience and that was high school cheer.The team started with just 4 girls but has now expanded to 23 members (including 3 boys).
 
Although this condensed version of the story makes it seem as though everything just fell into place (which in a way it has), there have been many ups-and-downs and obstacles. The one thing I have learned is that if you are truly passionate about something, there is a way to make it happen.”
 
I’ve known for many years how dedicated dancers are to their craft, but Delilah’s story takes it to a whole new level. Please feel free to share your thoughts about the Delta Illusion Dance Company and send them your regards and encouragement!

Michael Jackson for tap dance routines

It’s been quite busy for music remixes and edits over the past several weeks. One of the latest requests is a Michael Jackson song re-edited/remixed for a 7-year-old tapper, with a duration of 2:20 for the routine. Michael Jackson was an amazing musician, singer, dancer and entertainer. Pretty much every one of his songs has a catchy beat and great structure. He is one of my favorite artists for music editing and remixing.

After completing and uploading the latest MJ remix for the tap routine, the dance parent had this to say upon first listen:

“Oh my goodness, this is PERFECT!! You are a genius! Thanks so much!”

It’s great to know that another tapper will have a spectacular remix to dance with. When you are ready for flawless music which is a cut above the rest for your next dance routine, just let me know.