MEXONE. My hero.

Never in all my life, would I think to would be writing this post. It’s hard to put into words what I could say about someone like MEX, so I’ll just start from the very beginning and we’ll see where it goes. None of this is pre-planned so i’ll just let it all out. It’ll focus more on the story of me and him and I may ramble, but I just need to let it out. Bear with me, please. There may be some grammatical errors, but that’s just how me an MEX would do it.

Back in 2003 I moved away from where I was raised (South Florida) and spent a lot less time away from my crew, Unique Styles. The following year I got a message from someone saying that they were “MEX” from Unique Styles Crew and they needed a flyer done for an event he was throwing. Now, at first I was so confused because I had never heard of this guy and he was saying that he was in my crew, lol, so naturally I called my other crew mates up (Squid and Namek) and asked them who he was. They quickly told me that he was a member and had gotten down while I was away. Personally I was starting to feel like I was growing out of the whole “hiphop crew” thing and I was more focused on what I was going to do next in my life and graffiti just kept getting me into trouble. In that same message Mex says to me: “I’m coming to you because i’m a huge fan of your art! And not only that you’re part of USC..you’ve always been USC..we’re crew!”. It had been a whole year since someone even cared I was even part of anything. I moved from the bustling south Florida streets to Lakeland Florida. A central Florida city that was so filled with trees and nature that I hated it to the core…lol. I was a city boy in the sticks and for someone to finally say “hey, you belong with us!” felt awesome. Anyhow…he quickly told me the event was “Evolution” and we came up with a concept and that was the first flyer I ever made for him.

As time went on we would talk online all the time. He would tell me about all the great things he wanted to do in the scene and said that I would be along for the ride if I was down. I would be his “personal graphic designer” and that I could gain some recognition in what I do, if I put in the work. I said yes, reluctantly, but I just enjoyed the work from doing the flyers. And on top of that I didn’t have a steady job at the time and he was paying me what I would ask for and sometimes more! He would always say that it was worth it and that he was my biggest fan.

In 2005 I designed the flyer for Outbreak II and the rest is kinda history from there. That’s the one flyer that really put me on the map. Before you know it I was designing all kinds of flyer for his events and he would get me gigs designing flyers for other events too. Other promoters noticed my art and wanted me to do all kinds of stuff for them. As a teenager I was always infatuated with Freestyle session posters and I would think to myself “one day I would love to do shit like this!” and here Mex was setting the foundation for all of it.

Fast forward to about mid 2006(ish?). I had already moved back to south Florida and I moved in with MEX and SQUID in a little rundown complex in Fort Lauderdale that would infamously become “THE USC HOUSE”. If you were there, then you know what i’m talking about! We would stay up all night and just bug out with each other and it was awesome. Now, Mex was constantly telling me about how he wanted to take me places with him. He wanted me to travel with him to jams because he thought I would like it. He said that there would be a time where we could go somewhere internationally. He came into my room one night and says all casually “Hey you wanna go to Paris?” and me…in shock…was like “Hell yea!” and before you know it we were on our way to Paris for Chelles Battle Pro…lol. It would be the first of many trips that he took me on. During one of my trips with him to an event in the U.S. (i forgot which one) he asked me “hey, where would you like to go the most?” and I responded with “Japan has always been my dream place to go to” and he says….ill never forget it….”I’m going to make sure you go to Japan one day” and as much as I barely believed him before…this time…I was a believer. At this point everything that Mex said we were going to do…it would happen. I still remember the one night Mex came into my room and said: “YO! I got an idea for something I want to sell at jams!” and he starts telling me how he wants to design this T-shirt that says “BBOY OR DIE!” I laughed at him and started telling him how corny that would be and that no one would buy or wear that. Boy was I wrong…lol. The shirt became so popular we couldn’t even keep inventory of it. It was nuts. He then told me to come up with more designs as he wanted to maybe start to see if we could develop a clothing line. I hated dealing with clothing, but I just went with it because I believed in him so much. Around the same time we were approached by a rich Russian man who was the owner of a chain of clothing stores called WORKMENS. Apparently they were big on the west coast and they were going to open one up in Miami and wanted our help. We helped this guy open the store and at the same time we learned alot about the streetwear business. One day during me working at Workmens (I had moved to Miami for a bit at this point, to work at the store part time) the phone rang while i was folding some shirts and he says “are you ready to go to Japan?”. I nearly lost my shit. Mex had done it. He had gotten me a trip to Japan AND not only that…we had the clothing line ready to be debuted at whatever next event we went to. We officially debuted BIGGEST&BADDEST, in Japan, at Freestyle Session that year. It still remains as one of the most amazing experiences I have ever had.

Another great morning Mex wakes me up and says “hey, soooo…my boy Cros 1 wants you to do a flyer him” and i’m like…”Freestyle session Cros!?, NO FUCKING WAY!” and he was like..”yeah man, I told you one day it could happen” and it did. A dream I once had as a teenager came full circle. It is another one of my proudest moments till this day. In a couple years Mex was showing me the world, introducing me to prolific figures in the game AND getting me work from it all. I was at his side so much, it was like I couldn’t wait for the next big move. His next idea. And to top it all off it was never about making money for him. It was for the benefit of the community first AND THEN us. He would always make sure that no matter how much fun or opportunities we would get, it would benefit everyone as a whole and then eventually trickle down to us. Most of the time we were just happy to be working for ourselves. We didn’t want to have any bosses. It was just us. And with that came, The BBoy Spot.

I learned to be so humble because of him. As time went on me and MEX would become super close. Practically best friends. We would argue all the time…haha. I mean, who didn’t argue with the guy! He was so opinionated and grounded to his roots that if he liked something, he was a passionate about it. We would go on to travel more, open a screen printing shop, live in a warehouse together (with his then girlfriend Gina! Shout outs to her!), move to Orlando, get a cool warehouse, than a bigger warehouse! It was such a wild ride. Sometimes I can’t believe it even happened. It was surreal. I wouldn’t change any of it. I remember when he told me him and his girl were pregnant, I remember seeing little Daniel (his son) for the first time and watching him grow for his first 2 years. It was just so…it was…I can’t even find the one word to fit it all in. The man gave me a life. A life I am so proud of.

Now I guess there should be a point to all this and if anything it would be this. This story (if you’ve gotten this far) is just one of many. And not just a couple of people here and there. A LOT OF PEOPLE AROUND THE WORLD. If he saw potential in someone, he knew how to bring that potential out of you. He knew what it would take for you to be the best person you could be on most every level. I believe now that he was here for the short time that he was, to teach us all that. To find out just how amazing we all are. Sure he did it in his own way and some people disagreed with him, but he would make it happen. Deep down inside the man was so genuine that it hurt. I always used to hear him say how jealous he was of people who were talented at something because he said that if he was that talented at it, he would be the best in the world at whatever it is. The truth was, however, that he was talented. And talented in a major way. He united whole countries together through his love for the hiphop community. He introduced so many of us to each other that I lost count years ago. As of this writing I cannot tell you how many people have come out to pay their condolences to me for his passing. I have tried to answer every phone call, every text, every message, every DM, every everything. I’ve read countless posts about peoples encounters with Mex and reading them doesnt get any easier. It was like suddenly I was hired to do a job that no one would ever want. To be the voice for someone that was so much more bigger than life, that its impossible for me to say anything that would make it all better.

I appreciate everyone that has reached out to me, to his family and that has had concerns for his beautiful son. To all of you…a big whole hearted THANK YOU. We’re all devastated by it just as much as you. Trust me. It’s the hardest thing I have had to go through in my entire life, but because of who he was to me…it is something I must do.

Mex, my dude, you are a hero to me. I will never forget you or give up when I feel like im down. I will never say I can’t, I will never not stand for my beliefs and I will always work hard for myself. You taught me this and so much more in life. It’s extremely difficult for me to imagine a life without you for advice and friendship, but you wouldn’t want me to move any other way but forward. I love you and I am going to miss you more than you will ever imagine.


Thank you Daniel Zhu from STANCE for this beautiful video.

Source: MEXONE. My hero.

Should Ayumi become the 1st Bgirl to represent the Red Bull BC One ALL Stars??

History was made 2 weeks ago when it was announced that Ayumi-Body Carnival from Japan would become the 1st ever bgirl to represent at a Red Bull BC One World Finals competition (Nov. 4th in Amsterdam, Holland). It has taken 14 years for this to happen. The scene has changed drastically since then. We’ve evolved in many different ways, and the bgirls have done so as well. There was a time when bboys and bgirls would question if a girl could do air-flairs, if bgirls could win top competitions vs bboys,
and if bgirls deserved their own BC One type competition…

The last few years have answered these questions. Bgirls are flying now, and Bgirls like Ayumi, Narumi, AT among others are taking out bboys left and right. And now with Ayumi getting a direct invite to the BC One World Finals, she has proven that bgirls don’t need their own (competitions), they just need to earn their own.

When Ayumi’s participation was announced, Jeskilz (being Jeskilz) pushed the topic a bit further with her comment:

Soon after Daniel (Stance) extended upon her words:

Ayumi at Outbreak Europe:

And now it is our turn to advocate for her…
Ayumi should get strong consideration in becoming the 1st ever Red Bull BC One All Star Bgirl because she is a proven professional. She’s respected and admired by all (She is awesome. I remember when she came to FL and practiced with me for 3 days…), has extensive knowledge and history of Japanese breaking culture, travels the break world more often than most, lives and devotes to the break life and is a proven competitor that’s not afraid to hold her own and lay it all on the line. She also recently became the 1st ever bgirl to win the toughest 2 vs 2 competition in the world when her and Thesis won Outbreak Europe (Came close by reaching the semi finals back in 2013 at Outbreak 10 Year Ann.) on top of winning every top level bgirl competition in the world.

Ayumi is a perfect bgirl ambassador for the type of projects Red Bull BC One All Stars embark on. The break scene has grown extensively. More and more bgirls are coming up. More and more bgirls need someone to look up to and Ayumi is that bgirl. I know it takes more than a few comments or a blog for this to happen and maybe it’s not yet the time, but maybe what Ayumi has done will trailblaze for another bgirl to become THE ONE. Creating awareness and speaking about it is a great way to start.

One time to Ayumi on her invitation! I would also like to send a special shout out to Narumi. Narumi trailblazed a path for her sister and many others across the world. Ayumi’s invitation is in many ways a testament to her own hard work and dedication.

Source: Should Ayumi become the 1st Bgirl to represent the Red Bull BC One ALL Stars??

Bokoesam, Emms (Broederliefde) & Jack $hirak maken samen muziek in nieuwe webserie

Rappers Bokoesam en Emms (Broederliefde) en producer Jack $hirak lanceren vrijdag 15 september hun nieuwe single ‘Omhoog/Away’. Het nummer is tot stand gekomen in de webserie “The Perfect Beat”.

In de zesdelige webserie trekt het trio door de straten van New York in hun zoektocht naar de ‘perfecte beat’. “Ik vind het interessant om te zien waar het allemaal vandaan komt, waar Hip Hop en breakdance begonnen zijn. Gewoon mensen die willen dansen en plezier hebben” aldus Bokoesam over de kennis die hij opdeed in The Big Apple.

Terug naar de oorsprong van Hip Hop

Op uitnodiging van de Red Bull BC One creëerden 2 teams een track. Team 1, bestaande uit Bokoesam, Emms en Jack $hirak, maakten de inspiratietrip en deze unieke samenwerking werd vastgelegd in de webserie ‘The Perfect Beat’. De kijker ziet het drietal discussiëren met verschillende muziekkenners uit de stad en schuiven zelfs aan tafel bij de legendarische Hip Hop radioshow “Sway in the morning”. Ze praten met Naughty by Nature, bekend van de iconische track “Hip Hop Hooray” en ze ontmoetten B-boy Crazy Legs van de baanbrekende Rock Steady Crew.

In de Red Bull Studios in Amsterdam bundelen de mannen vervolgens hun krachten en inspiratie, met ‘Omhoog/Away’ als resultaat. Een track over tegenslagen, persoonlijke groei en positiviteit.

‘Omhoog/Away’ wordt uitgebracht op 15 september en opgevolgd door een track van Team 2, bestaande uit Cho, Spanker en Timor Steffens. Zij onderzochten in Nederland de breakdance scene en creëerden ook een single, deze wordt op 2 oktober gelanceerd.

Hip Hop viering

Op 2, 3 en 4 november staat in het Amsterdamse Westerpark de creatieve Hip Hop cultuur centraal met lezingen, breakdance battles, workshops en kunst tijdens de Red Bull BC One. Hoogtepunt is op 4 november als in de Gashouder voor het eerst het wereldkampioenschap breakdance, de Red Bull BC One World Final, in Amsterdam plaatsvindt. De 16 beste breakdancers ter wereld nemen het dan tegen elkaar op. Nederland is met 2 deelnemers, Menno van Gorp en Shane Donovan, goed vertegenwoordigd in de finale. Daarnaast maakt ook danser Justen Beer, bekend van de tv-show ‘Everybody Dance Now’, kans op een plaats in de finale.

Volg de twee teams in de 6 afleveringen van de webserie, vanaf 18 september te zien op de online kanalen van Top Notch en Red Bull Music.

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Source: Bokoesam, Emms (Broederliefde) & Jack $hirak maken samen muziek in nieuwe webserie

Rock City

Rock City, presented by the Pro Breaking Tour and sanctioned by UDEF, took place on Friday, September 8th, 2017 at CF Dance Studios in Fullerton, CA. This Pro Breaking Tour Satellite Series Event featured a crew bboy/bgirl breaking battles, awarding a total of $1000.

Crew Battle Prize Distribution:
o $500 for first place
o $300 for second place
o $100 for semifinalists

Hosted by:
o Lil Rock

Beats dropped by:
o DJ Megatone X Yaks

Congrats to Beat Rock Crew & Bboy Thesis for taking the win in the crew breaking battle finals.

Big congrats to all competitors who entered!

Powered by Monster Energy

Check back soon for videos and pictures from the event.

Source: Rock City

UNDISPUTED USA Qualifier

This past weekend the Pro Breaking Tour his San Diego CA. for its 27th official stop of the 2017 tour. The jam? UNDISPUTED USA Qualifier. The mega event held what will be the 2nd biggest 1 vs 1 competition is the U.S this year(SB Open will be 1st.) The event line up was WORLD CLASS across the board. World renown bboys such as Remind, Moy, Thesis, El Nino, Ronnie, Lil Rock, and many others wanted to claim the title plus secure their spots in this years UNDISPUTED World Finals. Aside of the title, and guaranteed finals spot, there was also a very nice 1st place cash prize consisting of $2,000, 2nd place received $750, semi finalist $400each, Top 8 $200each, Top 16 $100.00each and Top 32 $50.00each. To go along with the star studded line up of bboys, Undisputed also carried a world class line up of DJ’s and Judges consisting of:

Dj’s
Lean Rock
Megatone
Kidriz
Mane One

Judges
Paulskee – Mighty 4/Rock Force
Wicket – Footwork Fanatics
Kujo – Soul Control
Nemasis – Breaks Crew
Casper – Boogie Brats/SBR
prelim/alternate judge
Ace – Master Movements

We can’t forget our host with the most. The one and only Cros One and the urban action figure Ivan.
THE BATTLES: Check out the TOP 32 line up.

TOP 16 Battles:
Thesis defeats Omen, Sa-ewl takes out Phil, May eliminates Shigekix, Ronnie moves on over Nico.
El Nino advances over Frankie, Buckshot takes out Exaggerate, Remind defeats Lil Rock and Gravity moves on over Zeku.

We do have to highlight this battle: Remind vs Lil Rock. Two legends from the 90’s. Two Pro-Am winners. Two bboys who pioneered Styles and movements. Crazy to see them battle all these years later.

TOP 8 Battles:
Thesis defeats Sa-ewl, May takes out Ronnie.
El Nino ends Buckshots run, Remind defeats Gravity.

In this one we gotta highlight the battle of the sponsored bboys. Monster Bboy Vs BC One All Star.
Moy vs Ronnie:

SEMIFINALS:
Thesis defeats Moy
El Nino eliminates Remind.

THE FINALS: Thesis vs El Nino
What a final…. Two homies who have battled with each other and against numerous times. Two bboys that have been holding it down for the USA on the battle tip for over a decade.

For awesome pictures of UNDISPUTED USA, All photos by : Adam “Emajyn Adolphus

Next stop on the Pro Breaking Tour: Rock City 8 Year Anniversary
Follow the PBT at: https://www.udeftour.org/full-schedule/

Source: UNDISPUTED USA Qualifier

Good Judge of Character. By Bboy Spin – Soul Mavarics

Some insightful words from our brotha’ SPIN – Soul Maverics on his Facebook page…

Lately, I have been thinking more and more about what it is that gets a promoter choosing the judges they do for their events. Most of us have already established that a dope bboy or bgirl does not necessarily make them a good judge. Yet promoters (new and old) still seem to make what I would consider to be bad calls, in the judges that are chosen, but I guess I have rarely ever known or asked why they were chosen in the first place. There are many reasons why people are chosen to judge, and even why they are chosen for particular events. These are a few reasons (good and bad) as to why that may be:

1. They are a famous bboy/bgirl who will bring people to the event
2. They are friends with the promoter who is throwing the event/competition
3. The promoter is a fan (too much) of the bboy/bgirl and just wants to hang out
4. They are thought to suit the type of event the promoter is wanting to put on etc or share similar views perhaps
5. They are considered to have a vast knowledge of the artform
6. They are considered to be relevant and up to date with the scene today
7. They have been in the game for a long time (even if no longer involved in the current scene and events)
8. They are considered to be fair in their decisions without bias
9. They have been recommended by another promoter or trusted source

These I am sure are just a few of the reasons why many of our judges get picked. I wonder however, how many of our judges are picked based on the weight put on their character? If you think about it, when in a position as a judge, there are going to be times (quite often in fact) where the persons character, is going to cross with their knowledge.

How many times have we all seen a judge who we think should ‘know better’ make a call in the other direction? And what could have driven them to make such a decision (or not at all in the case of tie-breakers)? Is it pressure when a champ meets an underdog, when your friends are in the battle, when your bias takes over, when you consider the crowds expectation etc?. What are judges hired to do exactly? Really and truly they are hired to make decisions. On top of that role you hope they make the ‘right’ decisions (speaking about right and wrong decisions is another conversation altogether though, so I will leave that point where it is and carry on with what this Note is about). So going back to the question of what judges are hired to do, it’s to make decisions, regardless of these variables. If these pressures are often making the decisions inconsistent, the judging ability is no longer reliant on the knowledgebase of that individual. In fact it would have a lot more to do with that persons character. Can they make the call, an informed decision, even with any or several of these variables in place, and STILL do the job he/she has been HIRED to do? Knowing the ‘right’ decision and making another is nothing to do with knowledge.

All the knowledge counts for nothing if at the end of ‘3,2,1’ you can’t make an appropriate decision, or a decision at all for that matter (tie-breaker). What if we started to look a little deeper into how we pick the people in the judges seat, and started to ask ourselves if they are even decision makers. In the case of decisions where not many can, or have the balls to make (high level competition), knowledge is obviously not enough. Although it may be a big part of what is needed to make an informed decision, it does NOT give you the ability to make that decision. I believe this is where character comes in, and should perhaps be taken more into account when considering who to put in the role of judge. How many promoters actually speak to their judges, about judging? A simple conversation is a useful tool in finding out what page your judge or potential judge is on. Are these conversations common place before hiring someone to judge at your event? If not, then why not? Especially when those hired or considered are usually bboys or bgirls who you will encounter at many events anyway and have the time to chat. This should be taken advantage of in my opinion if it is not being done so already.

This tool is just as useful in scouting for new judges. It seems pretty obvious that we have way more events than able judges at the moment. How many of these chats are happening with new potentials? Once found, how are they being tested? I know there are many reasons that many potential judges are not considered, but taking into account some of the reason judges ARE being considered, maybe we should do more scouting for those with the potential to do more judging in the near future. Hopefully, considering the knowledge vs character I am saying here which seems to be missing in my honest opinion. There are so many events that have qualifiers for world finals. Why not have potential judges tested on smaller local jams, or local qualifiers and even make it a rule to every so often have a seat for these ‘potentials’ at local level jams? Just a thought.

This note is primarily to open up some conversation on the topic of why or how judges get given that responsibility, because ultimately, it is the promoters putting on the events who GIVE them this position. Bboys/bgirls are not the ones telling promoters that they are going to be judging their event. I invite all promoters (if you care or consider what has been said here) to do that little bit more. Find out the type of PERSON you are dealing with. Try to figure out if they are decision makers or not, as well as all the other things you have in your profile for what a judge needs to have. Character seems to be often overlooked.

Spin
Soul Mavericks

If you’d like to contribute to the conversation, make sure to follow the link HERE to comment on the post

PEACE!

Source: Good Judge of Character. By Bboy Spin – Soul Mavarics

FSS Undisputed USA 26-27 AUG

Freestyle Session & Grassroots Productions bring you Undisputed USA/North American Qualifier presented by Pro Breaking Tour sanctioned by UDEF sponsored by Monster Energy Drink and www.RushOrderTees.com August 26th-27th, 2017 at World Beat Center, San Diego 1 vs 1 Solo Battles – Undisputed World Series Qualifier 1 vs 1 Kids Battle 1 vs 1 Bgirl Battle – […]
Source: FSS Undisputed USA 26-27 AUG