What makes this dance recognizable? What is typical, distinctive or characteristic?

Solo rhythmically move freely on the dance floor. Unstructured.


Paradise by the Dashboard Light - Meat Loaf
Gloria - Van Morrison
I can’t get no satisfaction - Rolling Stones


Can be translated from English as a shock, jerking, shiver, a bastard.

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This is not a couple dance, and is not taught in dance schools. But at parties and events dominates this, and therefore deserves a place here.

The Jerk was a popular dance from the 1960s. The song "The Jerk" was written by Don Julian and scored a top ten hit. It was recorded in 1964 by his vocal soul group The Larks from Los Angeles for the Money label.

The Jerk (dance) is basically The Monkey, but arms and hands move as when conducting a band. Wrists crosses in front of the chest and then swing sideways to the rhythm. The whole body moves on the usual measure of four. The hands start moving at eye level. On count one the arms hit sideways, follow the hands and then accentuate this movement. For a bit more style snap the fingers at the end of this move (on the first and third beat). The pelvis is tilted forward and backward.

In 1966 the hit "Cool Jerk", was written and covered by several bands, including The Go Go's.

In 1998, Rocket from the Crypt recorded the song "When in Rome, do the jerk" as a tribute to this dance.

Bobby Fuller referred to this dance in his song, "Jenny Lee (Do The Jerk With Me)".

Nowadays it seems to be sufficient to nod the head, so in the meantime not too much beer is spilled from the glass. The more active occupants of the space on the dance floor also move and even turn sometimes somewhat rhythmic a foot. But of course the real toppers still move their hips and hands. It is also called 'free dance' or ' dancing loose’.