There are various stories of how WCS evolved from Linda Hop. One is that people, tired of being kicked by wild Jitterbug dancers, began to dance in a slot. Another is that the end of the Big Band era forced dancers to move into blues clubs where they modified Lindy Hop to fit the smaller spaces and slower music. Others believe WCS was created in Hollywood by dancer Dean Collins because dancing in a slot made for better camera shots.
Whatever its true origins WCS was born in California during the 1940’s. Called “Western Swing”, this new dance was popularized in the 1950’s by Arthur Murray dance studios and teacher Skippy Blair. In 1959, the dance was renamed West Coast Swing. While WCS is the official California state dance, it is danced widely throughout the US and Canada.
West Coast Swing is smooth (no bounce) and danced in a slot. The dance allows room for syncopated footwork and improvisation. WCS can be danced to a wide arrange of music including Rhythm and Blues, Country Western, Funk,