By Alex Smith
Ames247 Staff Writer
Hip-hop is a dance form that has gone through many evolutions and gained popularity within today’s society. 61Syx is a break-dancing crew started by a group of friends in 2004 with a goal of teaching everyone that hip-hop is more than just dance. With a family basis feel within the group, the chemistry is easier to see in their moves. Four of the 16 dancers will be at Veishea this year.
61Syx has performed for The Clipse, Talib Kweli, Fantasia, George Clinton, Del The Funky Homosapien, B2K, Lloyd Banks, Fat Joe and more. They also have done smaller shows for charities, art showcases and church fundraisers.
61Syx believes there are five elements of hip-hop culture. Those are breaking, DJing, graffiti art, emceeing and knowledge. The focus of the group’s show to be performed at Veishea is knowledge. The goal is to teach people that it isn’t all about the stereotypical rap to everyone. The members do it for the love of dancing and the family feel, and they hope others will learn to love it too.
“The culture of hip-hop is peace, love and unity,” said 61Syx member Seoul.
The group’s show consists of 45 minutes of dancing followed by an hour of the timeline of BBoying, starting in the ’70s and going through to the present.
Within its routine, 61Syx tries to teach audiences more about this culture along with the history of hip-hop. While the show is focused on dance, each part has a different clothing style to represent the times the dance styles were popular. This is meant to be a visual aspect of what it was really like when the moves originated. The group did its research before trying to teach others.
“We spent probably three or four years going around and meeting pioneers of different eras, styles and cities,” Seoul said.
Seoul said he believes different eras do not only have their own style, but so do cities and individuals. Differences can be seen in the way people dance and the style they give off.
Not only has 61Syx traveled in more of an underground fashion to meet with people who know the historic styles of hip-hop, but the group also has traveled to colleges around the nation to teach what it has learned.
61Syx hopes to keep the spirit alive and show audiences that hip-hop is not just associated with gang violence or any other negative view that can be given, but to show the good side of hip-hop. Members encourage others to enjoy hip-hop as well.
“Be patient and know that if you love dancing, express yourself,” Seoul said. “You need to be having fun and to be able to connect with the music, close your eyes and vibe. Once you can do that, the rest just falls into place.”