MelissaUroffPhotographyHe dances like no one’s watching and dreams like he’ll live forever.
Kenny “The Dancing Man” Buchanan is all a city could want out of its off-the-wall resident dancing guy. He’s a small-statured man in his sixties who often wears low-cut black tank top, black tight pants, and a gold chain, and says he’s made of three things.
“I’m full of three things: dynamite, gun powder and rocket fuel, and I want to hit the floor like a freakin’ nuclear bomb.”
Raised in Sacramento, the Dancing Man is known for his risqué hip shaking, spinning, and pelvic thrusts throughout the city: at clubs, Concerts in the Park, Second Saturdays, and at the recent Kings Rally. Anywhere that draws a crowd will probably attract Kenny and his moves.
A guilty pleasure of his is to dance in front of people who are trapped. On the train. In traffic. In line at the movies. He gets a little giddy just talking about it.
“I’m not a bad person,” he laughs, “but I’m mischievous.”
He trains in International Latin Show Dancing at The Ballroom in East Sacramento, and eventually wants to take on the world’s greatest show dancers. His dream is to host a TV show called “The Dancing Man Hootchie Mama Show.” That’s right – “The Dancing Man Hootchie Mama Show.” He figures – who wouldn’t check out a show with that name?
Kenny’s spins, spanks and gyrations have been featured on Good Day Sacramento and other media outlets, and he thinks that publicity is just what he needs to get his childhood dream of being a television star off the ground.
“I’m a dreamer. I believe you shouldn’t stop dreaming until you die,” he said. After working almost three decades as a bartender, he’s ready to make his dream come to light.
He envisions a dance show that features his “ladybugs” – the lovely ladies who will serve as his backup dancers, with interview segments in between. He wants it to be fun and energetic, just like his moves.
“I want to be around fun people,” Kenny said. “They’re my catalyst and they understand my movement.”
It could be easy to write Kenny’s ambition off as a pipe dream if his enthusiasm was not so damn contagious. He thinks it’s strange that people mock the idea of being a legend in your own mind. To him, that’s the confident attitude it takes to do big things.
“I’ve always felt like I’ve had more life in my little finger than other people have in their whole body,” he said, holding up a pinky. Anyone who has met him or seen him dance can attest to that. “I know I’ve got it in me.”
Talking to Kenny brings a sense of inspiration. He’s full of quotes he applies to himself and his worldview – from Joan Rivers to the Bible.
A Mick Jagger quote Kenny likes to recite is clearly relevant in his own life: “‘I’m living out my adolescent dreams perpetually.’” Kenny asks, with a slightly mischievous smile, “There’s no law that says you have to grow up, is there?”
The Dancing Man doesn’t just passionately talk about what he wants to do – he goes out in front of thousands of people each month and does it. Couldn’t most of us use a little of The Dancing Man’s spirit?
“I will never be satisfied,” he said. “Never being satisfied is a good thing to have in you because the fire’s always burning.”
The Dancing Man seems to consistently reflect on life, death, the meaning of it all and comes to one conclusion: “We have to make the most of what we’ve got.”
And he does.

2 Replies to “Dynamite, Gun Powder and Rocket Fuel: Sacramento’s Dancin’ Man”

  1. I’ve danced with him once and he left a forever memory in my mind….just a wonderful spirit he has and his positive attitude is soooo contagious! Wish there were more like him in the world…..I will watch his show:-)

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