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Sackett's Harbor - contra dance

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Uploaded on Jan 19, 2011

Tod Whittemore is the caller; music is provided by Firetruck: Ethan Hazzard-Watkins, fiddle; Anna Patton, clarinet; Bruce Rosen, piano. This was part of a dance workshop ("What, no swing?") recorded on January 15, 2011, at the 24th annual Ralph Page Dance Legacy Weekend in Durham, NH.

Named in honor of the great New England caller of contra and square dances, the RPDLW celebrates the traditions of New England style dancing, including dances and music that are centuries old and those that have been composed more recently. More information about the weekend can be found here:
http://www.nhcountrydance.com/music/r...

Sackett's Harbor was the headquarters of the American fleet on Lake Ontario during the War of 1812. The dance references a successful American effort in May, 1814, to evade a British naval blockade. The dance is sometimes used to teach contra corners.

In New England, the tune most commonly played for this dance is Steamboat Quickstep (aka Washington Quickstep). There is a Sackett's Harbor Reel found in upstate New York. Here, the band plays Last Light of Day and Warren's Favorite, two jigs written by fiddler Ethan Hazzard-Watkins.

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