Style Elements Crew stands for the unity, advancement and elevation of Hip-Hop culture. Although most well known for our contributions to Breaking (B-Boying), the crew has always been about representing all of the elements.
Recognizing that style was, is, and always will be the key to all aspects of Hip-Hop, we work to promote creativity, originality and pushing the boundaries of expression within the culture.
We are committed to the progression of Breaking and all forms of Hip-Hop dance, with a focus on advancing individuality and innovation within the scene.
We are guided in our mission by the principles of positivity, unity, love, community, competition, respect, knowledge, expression, and empowerment.
Style Elements Crew (SEC) was established in 1994, with its original members based out of the areas of Stockton and Modesto, California.
From these small towns in Northern California emerged one of the most influential crews in the recent history of Breaking. Style Elements offered a new approach to the dance and left a permanent mark on how Breaking would evolve from its resurgence in the 1990’s on.
Originally founded by B-Boys Remind and Ivan, the crew sought to represent expression of one’s individuality (Style) through all the main forms (Elements) of Hip-Hop culture: Breaking, Writing, DJ’ing, MC’ing, Beat-Boxing, etc. Upon hearing the name, Gonz (the lead writer in the crew) quickly decided to design the original crew logo, print shirts, and pass them out to the members. From then on, the name stuck and a group of friends who ran together–having fun at local house parties, raves, and underground clubs–were now a crew under one banner.
Original Members: Remind, Ivan, Quali-D, Crumbs, Ivan Boogie-T, Super Dave, Gonz, Jay Rawk, Poe One, Tommy Boy
After winning local competitions and doing small shows, the group began venturing out to other cities throughout the west coast. They gained recognition for their creativity, versatility and style, with each member bringing their own unique flavor to the table.
In February 1996, the crew made its way to San Diego for the B-Boy Summit. After seeing fellow breakers from San Jose’s Floor Rockers going at it with the Rock Steady Crew, SEC joined in, going round-for-round with the likes of Flowmaster, Ken Swift, Easy Rock, and Mr. Wiggles. The exchange quickly gained notoriety throughout the world, with footage from the battle featured prominently on the official B-Boy Summit video.
A few months later, SEC would engage in another historic battle against Bay Area crew The Renegades. The classic showdown took place at Radiotron in Los Angeles, with SEC coming out the winner. Again, footage of the battle circulated around the world through the distribution of the event’s official video. The crew gained popularity for its innovative moves, intricate routines, diverse range, and ability to match up in both style and power.
By then, SEC had already made a mark on the scene–but they did not stop there. Both as a unit and as individuals, every member kept elevating their skills. In just ‘97 alone, Remind won first place at Miami’s B-Boy Pro-Am competition, Jay Rawk and Crumbs won Best of the Best in San Jose, and the crew came in first in another historic battle against Rock Force at Tribute to the Elements . In the same year, Style Elements went to Europe for the first time for Battle of the Year, where they convincingly took home first place, becoming the first U.S. crew to win the prestigious competition.
It was also in that year that the first Style Elements video was released, titled Strategic Monsters. It opened up a whole new page for the crew, giving more insight into its members and what they represent. With solo features of Crumbs, Remind and Gonz, the public got to see unique footage from circles, exhibitions, battles, comedic skits and interviews. The message of the project was clear: SEC represents all elements of Hip-Hop (not just Breaking) and pushes the boundaries of originality and expression.
Copies of the video spread widely, exposing the crew to an even larger audience and quickly becoming an underground classic. The popularity of the group was reflected in the fact that the official SEC website (ran by the crew’s webmaster Legend) was averaging 165,000 unique hits monthly, an extremely high number for any site back in 1997.
The SEC style was taking hold among a lot of dancers and many of the moves that the crew pioneered or innovated were soon adopted and incorporated around the world. Moves like hand hops, air chairs, stacks, threads, head slides, wrist styles, neck rolls, and signature transitions were some of the many aspects of the dance SEC helped popularize. In the realm of popping, Tommy Boy had a big impact as well, winning contests across the world and being recognized for his unique moves.
By the time the crew released its follow-up video, “Kakapoopoo Porquipines,” their following was so large that they sold over 300 copies hand-to-hand in just one weekend at B-Boy Summit. The video further spotlighted the crew’s unique flavor, featuring solos of Jay Rawk, Remind, Tommy Boy, and the newest addition, MC Bas-1.
Decade of Destruction
The group continued to expand its horizons into the new millennium. Members ventured out into event organizing and throwing their own Breaking functions for the community. Quali-D hosted a series of successful jams called “Flavor to Burn” in Texas and “Concrete Soul” in Las Vegas, while Jay Rawk began a popular event in San Jose called “True to the Game.”
The crew also expanded in numbers with the addition of three influential dancers from Los Angeles and long-time friends of SEC: Stuntman, Ruen and Frankie Flave. The new additions added further to the mix, as the group continued its spree of battles, shows, and guest appearances. In 2002, SEC made another major mark on the scene when it won first place at Freestyle Session, the premiere Breaking event in the world. It was here that they displayed a number of new, complex, and large-scale routines, helping spread the common use of such dance forms by others in B-Boy competitions.
The next year, they unveiled their own five-part theater show at the B-Boy Summit in Los Angeles. This performance spotlighted the crew’s unique ability to put together creative themes and story-lines with original Breaking choreography. They later took the show on tour to stages throughout Europe. A similar production was put together for the first Style Elements Anniversary, held in Los Angeles in 2004.
Many of the members also began broadening their horizons into the entertainment industry, appearing in commercials, movies, documentaries, music videos, concert tours, television shows, and even a Sony PlayStation video game. All the while, they remained fully committed to the B-Boy community, regularly conducting workshops, organizing events, releasing DVD’s, and doing exhibition battles against some of the top names in the world.
After over a decade-and-a-half of consistently elevating the dance and their art, Style Elements became one of the most influential crews in B-Boy history. They are widely credited for adding new vocabulary to the dance and breaking a lot of the traditional stereotypes about how Breaking is supposed to be done. They experimented with unorthodox movements, concepts, mediums, and styles, while still staying true to the essence of the dance. Today, each member is active in various elements of Hip-Hop and the crew continues to make its contributions to the scene. In 2011, seven new members (Pandora, A-Game, Crayone, Artson, Midus, Mikey Ice and Machine) were added to the family, each bringing their own unique style and diversity to the collective.
SEC plans to continue pushing the boundaries of the culture even further into the future. There are many avenues yet to be explored and the crew looks forward to taking its talent to newer and higher heights.