To ignore race when discussing music is to ignore the very origins of the art form itself. We won't lecture about tribal music in Africa, the oral tradition of communal song across Europe and Latin America, or the origin of rhythm and blues in the spirituals of the American South, but it's impossible to overlook the fact that, in 2006, dance music is a force to be reckoned with everywhere around the world except the United States. Hip-hop—bless its formerly repressed, underdog heart—rules the U.S. charts to the point where a dance single cracking the Top 10 is considered a huge accomplishment. What constitutes a "club" song today is vastly different from a decade ago. In 1996, Everything But the Girl and La Bouche were climbing the pop charts; in the 21st century, we've got, at worst, Fat Joe's 2004 hit "Lean Back," a song about not dancing, and, at best, Pussycat Dolls' more-hip-hop-than-dance "Don't Cha."