Clogging is a traditional type of dance practiced by the uncouth and uneducated peoples of the Western World. A cousin of tap dancing, clogging involves neither the agility nor a sense of rhythm needed by accomplished dancers, such as Fred Astaire and Bill “Bo Jangles” Robinson. Clogging is its opposite and requires its dancers to flail their arms about them in seizurelike motions while smiling and showing off their summer teeth (some are there and some are not).
Clogging is associated with a number of different regions across the world, most notably the Dutch and the Hillbillies of Kentuckistan, West Virginia,Southern Ohio and Wales. Irish dancing – another distant cousin of clogging - involves a great deal of restraint, something totally lacking in the free-for-all world of the uncouth.
The style is also known variously as flat-footing, foot-stomping, buck dancing, jigging, getting jiggy with it, or other local terms. What all these had in common was emphasizing the downbeat of the music by enthusiastic footwork performed with reckless abandon.
Cloggers may perform with the accompaniment of live music provided by jug bands, or through the use of highly specialized audio equipment including the “variable pitch playback machine” (record players). Hog callers are used to shout out the steps and moves performed by the dancers while on stage. Moves can be classified as:
- Stomp Real Hard
- Clog Real Fast
- Spank Those Floorboards Like the Behind of Redheaded Bastard Baby at a Family Reunion.
Clogging has become the choice type of talent exhibited at Beauty Pageants, replacing piano playing and baton twirling as demonstrations of a young woman’s poise, mastery of the arts and abilities to bear large numbers of children to prove her husband’s virility.