Bubblegum Dancer is the world's largest online database and encyclopedia for bubblegum dance, a style of dance music made famous by Aqua in the late 1990s. The site features artist biographies, detailed discographies, song lyrics, and all the latest news and updates.
What is bubblegum dance?
"Bubblegum dance" is a term coined to describe a particular style of eurodance or pop/dance music. Bubblegum dance typically has a high-pitched female vocalist singing upbeat and melody driven verses and choruses, and a male singing back up vocals or rap. The term "bubblegum dance" can be considered a coalition of the genres "Bubblegum pop~ a type of pop music originating in the 1960s that was marketed to appeal to pre-teens and teenagers." and "eurodance~ a genre of electronic dance music originating in Europe.."
The lyrics and style of bubblegum dance music is often playful and child-like. Common singing topics include fantasy characters such as wizards and princesses, and songs about having fun, love, partying, and eating candy. Original bubblegum dance projects, such as Aqua, Toy-Box, Crispy, Bambee and Miss Papaya are easily recognizable for their childish topics, tongue in cheek lyrics, and high-pitched vocals.
It is important to note that "bubblegum dance" is a term used to describe the genre and was introduced many years after the first true bubblegum dance acts. Before this term, these projects were often labeled as generic pop/dance or eurodance, which made the genre quite difficult to find. Other terms have also been used to describe bubblegum dance music, and these include: bubblegum techno, bubblegum house, euro cheese, bubble dance, and happy house.
Arguably the first true bubblegum dance project was Me & My, whose debut single "Dub-i-Dub" caused a sensation in Scandinavia and Japan. The song was fast-paced and sugar-coated, and the none-sensical lyrics "dub-i-dub-i-dub-dub-dub" became an anthem and inspiration for dance producers and singers all around the world. However, bubblegum dance did not receive world-wide recognition until 1997, when Aqua released their smash hit single "Barbie Girl." Barbie Girl topped the charts worldwide and sold more than 8 million copies. The success of Barbie Girl encouraged many other artists to write music in the same style, and as a result bubblegum dance production skyrocketed in the late 1990s.
Bubblegum dance originates in Scandinavia, particularly in Denmark where a large percentage of bubblegum dance music is produced. The late 1990s and early 2000s marked the high-point in bubblegum dance production. Bubblegum dance music can be seen as the transition point between the harder style of music that was popular in the early 90s and the happy "teen pop" music that was popular during the early 2000s.
Bubblegum dance music has a huge following in Japan, probably due to its use in popular dance games such as Dance Dance Revolution (DDR), In The Groove (ITG) and the Dancemania series. Many artists, such as Smile.dk, Bambee, Rebecca and Miss Papaya, have gained recognition and fame through these games. As well as this, Anime has a large bubblegum dance following, and many fans choose to use bubblegum dance styled music in their fan-made Anime Music Videos (AMVs).
Bubblegum dance music does not have a specific target audience. It's happy, often childish lyrics make it popular with young children; and the hidden meaning and innuendos in the lyrics make good entertainment for adults. Research shows that adults who enjoy bubblegum dance music like it because the positive and innocent message it conveys reminds them of their childhood.
Because bubblegum dance music is often created by adults, it therefore often includes adult themes. Lyrics sometimes reference adult themes in a cheeky and humorous way through the use of innuendos. An example of an innuendo lies in Toy-Box's popular song, "Super-Duper-Man," While the naughty lyrics "Can I touch your ting-a-ling?" will be understood by adults, the hidden sexual reference will most likely go unnoticed by children.
Nevertheless, there are many bubblegum dance acts whose lyrics and music are aimed directly at children and do not include these innuendos. These are usually acts that are either headlined by children, for example "Bubbles," or are marketed by a children's television station, for example "Banaroo."
Overall, bubblegum dance music is not restricted to a particular age group or gender; it is made for anyone who wants to listen to happy music with a positive message.