Old school breakdancing
February 13, 2009 9:48 AM   Subscribe

Soviet Army dance ensemble + Run DMC = the invention of breakdancing in the mid-1900s. (slyt, via kottke)
posted by swift (36 comments total) 15 users marked this as a favorite

 
Here's the same thing mixed with Fatboy Slim's Weapon of Choice. Reminds me of the previously featured but still awesome video of Al Minns and Leon James doing the Charleston to Daft Punk. Here are two more videos that track the origins and breakdancing and hip-hop dancing in a slightly more formal manner: one, two.

If we're cool with the blue being just a mirror for kottke, waxy, digg, et al, let's at least make it a full mirror.
posted by jckll at 9:59 AM on February 13, 2009


I'm a mefite, not a kottkike(?), so I appreciate the FPP here.
posted by JeffK at 10:03 AM on February 13, 2009 [1 favorite]


I think the US Army should have a dance crew.
posted by Hal Mumkin at 10:05 AM on February 13, 2009


kottkike(?)

Kottker?
posted by vibrotronica at 10:14 AM on February 13, 2009


Swift:

AWESOME post! Way better than those Fillipino prisoners!
posted by hal_c_on at 10:17 AM on February 13, 2009


Neat. It's also fun to run videos of people doing distinctive dances(think Soulja Boy or that recent Beyonce video I don't know the name of... yeah, that one) through the Benny Hill-ifier.
posted by owtytrof at 10:18 AM on February 13, 2009


hal_c_in da house!
posted by gman at 10:22 AM on February 13, 2009


full mirror
posted by swift at 10:23 AM on February 13, 2009


When you're a Jet,
You're a Jet all the way
From your first cigarette
To your last dyin' day.
posted by geekyguy at 10:23 AM on February 13, 2009 [1 favorite]


kottcat (or kottcow)
posted by DU at 10:25 AM on February 13, 2009


How about with Benny Hill music?
posted by Vulpyne at 10:29 AM on February 13, 2009


Weak sauce, despite the help of cklennon.

Not breakdancing to music that is not breaking music. Like putting some Shania Twain track over this clip of Greek dancing and calling it 'The roots of Line Dancing'.

Love me some charleston though. Might even get to see some tomorrow, if the dancers are with the band!
posted by asok at 10:29 AM on February 13, 2009


Not even close. No disrespect to Russian dance, because it's great. That mesh sucked, on two levels: RunDMC, and techno.
posted by Flex1970 at 10:33 AM on February 13, 2009


Anyway, here is that jump style clip that we all enjoyed *some time in the past*, while we are on the subject of stupid dance clips. Opening has some similarities to L4D/any zombie movie. File under unintentionally hilarious.
posted by asok at 10:34 AM on February 13, 2009


Wait, this isn't real breakdancing? Sorry!
posted by swift at 10:36 AM on February 13, 2009


Not breakdancing to music that is not breaking music.

Okay, educate me — within hip-hop, what counts as breaking music and what doesn't? Now that you mention it, it makes sense that some kinds of music would be better for breakdancing than others, but I'd never really given the issue much thought.
posted by nebulawindphone at 10:43 AM on February 13, 2009


In Soviet Russia, dance breaks you!
posted by Ironmouth at 10:45 AM on February 13, 2009 [3 favorites]


Okay, educate me — within hip-hop, what counts as breaking music and what doesn't? Now that you mention it, it makes sense that some kinds of music would be better for breakdancing than others, but I'd never really given the issue much thought.


Breaking

As the clichéd quote "break to the beat" points out, rhythmic music is an essential ingredient for breakdancing. The original songs that popularized the dance form borrow significantly from progressive genres of jazz, soul, funk, electro, disco, and R&B.[5] The most common feature of breakdance music exists in breaks, or compilations formed from samples taken from different songs which are then looped and chained together by the DJ. The tempo generally ranges between 110 and 135 beats per minute with shuffled sixteenth and quarter beats in the percussive pattern.[5] History credits Kool Dj Herc for the invention of this concept, later termed breakbeat.

The musical selection is not restricted to hip-hop as long as the tempo and beat pattern conditions are met. It can be readily adapted to different music genres (often with the aid of remixing). World competitions have seen the unexpected progressions and applications of heavily European electronica, and even opera. Some b-boys, such as Pierre, even extend it to rock music.

posted by jckll at 11:06 AM on February 13, 2009 [1 favorite]


That's not really the Charleston, by the way, although it's similar. It's closer to the mashed potato.
posted by Astro Zombie at 11:09 AM on February 13, 2009


After breaking, you can walk it out.
posted by phrontist at 11:13 AM on February 13, 2009 [1 favorite]


WTF?
Man, they got served.
posted by a3matrix at 11:27 AM on February 13, 2009 [2 favorites]


I love hip-hop and electronic music, but Jason Nevins doesn't do much for me. Shrug--I just don't think his remixes add a lot. It's like that Johnny Cash remix album--I want to hear mixing and bricolage and whatnot, not just a bunch of programmed beats dropped on top of something.

Run-DMC original here. I think that the electro and Mantronix influences, and the minimalism of early hip-hop, come through much more clearly.
posted by box at 11:49 AM on February 13, 2009


I can't find it, but I remember watching a clip of Crazy Legs in a documentary and he said something along the lines of "Nobody is creating anything new, nobody is making up new moves, all you're doing is realizing something somebody else has already done." The clip was from the early 80's, but the documentary wasn't that old. They featured all kinds of old clips interspersed with new clips of b-boys doing something similar.
posted by P.o.B. at 12:03 PM on February 13, 2009


heh, that's LOL ))
so, that's how the history was created.........
posted by Leo Golan at 12:24 PM on February 13, 2009


hey, i was just talking about this!

This is great. Thanks.
posted by es_de_bah at 12:24 PM on February 13, 2009


No offense to Crazy Legs, but I think this is the same kind of rose-tinted nostalgia that makes people say that the '72 Dolphins could win Super Bowl XLIII, or that today's rock'n'roll records aren't as good as the ones they made when I was in high school.
posted by box at 12:42 PM on February 13, 2009


ooohhhhh... juxtaposition.
posted by GuyZero at 12:58 PM on February 13, 2009


Don't get me wrong. I don't think it was breaking in that video at all. And I think Crazy Legs was commenting much more on what people think of as "originality".
posted by P.o.B. at 1:17 PM on February 13, 2009


one two step turn pivot step, pivot step and Soviet!
posted by The Whelk at 1:46 PM on February 13, 2009 [1 favorite]


kottkike(?)

Only megnut can tell for sure.
posted by dhartung at 2:09 PM on February 13, 2009


ryanrs, I have a Greasemonkey script that shows deleted threads and this appears to have been deleted but not closed for comments. Weird. I flagged your comment with [other] so maybe a mod will see it and clean it up.
posted by geekyguy at 2:13 PM on February 13, 2009


That's not really the Charleston, by the way, although it's similar. It's closer to the mashed potato.

So, it's a softcore tater?
posted by dirigibleman at 3:02 PM on February 13, 2009


geekyguy: I think the front page is lagging slightly. If it were deleted, comments would be closed. It's being discussed in MeTa.
posted by Pronoiac at 3:29 PM on February 13, 2009


Not breakdancing to music that is not breaking music.

Breakdancers can break to anything. And house music is fucking phenomenal to breakdance to.
posted by empath at 5:31 PM on February 13, 2009


Heh. I imagine It's much funnier if you're familiar with the original video for that mix of It's Like That.
posted by Artw at 11:46 PM on February 13, 2009


Breakdancers can break to anything. And house music is fucking phenomenal to breakdance to.

This is true. Although breaking has had a resurgence in the past few years there was probably a good fifteen years or more that B-Boying was not popular at all. The only people who were doing it were the hardcore. 87' was a year that a lot of things changed in hip-hop. Gangster rap took hold in the West, and gangsters don't dance (well they didn't at the time.) There was the new style ushered in by Eric B & Rakim in the East and there was the booty shaking music coming on strong in the South. All of these things pretty much added up to not much room on the stage for any B-boying. I'm not saying there wasn't any happening within Hip-Hop, just that it wasn't drawing people in like it was in the early to mid 80's. But if you did go to raves in the last ten to fifteen years, sometimes you could find a large group of people circled up watching some freaky dancing. And in that circle you could find some people breaking or popping. So I would say it's not far fetched that the rave scene is partially responsible for keeping breaking around. Oh, and if you're wondering what was going on in the Midwest in the late 80's...House music.
posted by P.o.B. at 5:54 AM on February 14, 2009


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