Home Grown Groove

by Margaret Leighty


I wasn’t the only one to live out a childhood dream recently when the Hanson brothers filmed the music video for their new hit single, “Thinking ‘Bout Somethin’.” Announcing over the microphone to over 300 fans and more than 35 local dancers, plus cast and crew, Isaac Hanson confessed that he and his brothers had been wanting to make this video since first falling in love with the movie The Blues Brothers.

A call to dancers went out via Facebook and local dance studios posted audition announcements. The music video would be shot on location in downtown Tulsa. Being a 30-something wanna-be dancer, I asked myself, why not? I dusted off my dance shoes, and decided to give it a shot. I was number 64 out of 75 hopefuls. Local dancer, studio owner, teacher, and choreographer, Heather Hall held the auditions at her Studio One dance studio. It was a mixed bag of people. Die-hard Hanson fans, fresh, young talented dancers, b-boys and b-girls, and experienced dancers with a young heart all had one thing in common: a dream to be filmed in a music video dancing our asses off.

For four days leading up to the shoot we learned the steps, perfecting the feel-good attitude from that famous scene in The Blues Brothers where they go into Ray Charles’ pawn shop. Hanson wanted to make an homage of the original scene, complete with a sea of people dancing in the streets doing the hot moves of days gone by, like the mashed potato and the twist. Video choreographer Heather Hall added a bit of hip-hop for that present-day feel. Rehearsals were refreshingly exhausting, and terrifically tiring. By the time shooting day arrived, we felt like family.

Dressed in vintage 1970’s clothing, the dancers arrived at 6:30am, and rehearsed the steps while a growing crowd of fans amassed on the street. By 10am, nearly 400 people squeezed onto Greenwood Avenue and practiced the moves. We shimmied, we twisted, made some mashed potatoes, did the swim, the bird and the jerk. We also smiled, laughed, panted, and cheered. It didn’t matter that it was cold, windy, and cloudy. We heated up the corner of Greenwood and Archer.

Photo: Lead dancers from the Hanson video shoot. The video for “Thinking ‘Bout Somethin’” was released April 15th and Hanson’s eighth studio album Shout It Out will go on sale June 8th of this year.