Savoy Satellites • Just Jivin’

I went to a dance last week—not an awkward daytime shuffle on asphalt, but an honest-to-goodness indoor, after-dark event on a wooden floor and everything. It wasn’t quite like the old days, as dancers mainly stuck to their bubbles and danced only with those they arrived with. But it was fabulous just to be there, to see people enjoying the sort of social occasion we’ve all missed so profoundly these last two years. Although sore from two days’ hiking in the Welsh hills, I devoured every chance to dance to my favorite tunes on a polished floor that didn’t threaten my already aching knees. Next on my wish list is to deejay such an event, something I hadn’t done for a while even before COVID. When I get the chance, I’ll certainly have tons of new material for the set list—including two or three from last year’s album Just Jivin’. It comes from Berlin-based outfit the Savoy Satellites. Founded as a quartet in 2012, by bassist Heiko Grumpelt, the band was initially intended as a tribute to the Nat King Cole Trio. But the small group soon felt the enormous gravitational pull of the swing dance scene, expanding its repertoire and diversifying its act to suit jitterbuggers all over Germany. Now operating as a quartet, quintet, or septet as required, recent engagements include the Havelhop dance camp in Potsdam and Summer Swing event in Leipzig, plus concerts at outdoor
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Dave Doyle is a swing dancer, dance teacher, and journalist based in Gloucestershire, England. Write him at [email protected]. Find him on Twitter @DaveDoyleComms.

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