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Featuring: Poppin John

Being asked to choose my favourite dancer makes me uncomfortable, because I feel that I am disrespecting all of the dancers who have influenced me in their own different ways. But I can answer the question if it is posed a little differently. “Which dancer has the strength and qualities that you want to attain?” or “If you could only watch and learn from one dancer, who might that one be?”

In these cases, my answer comes without reservations: Poppin John. Isolations, dime stops, speed control, variety of styles. He excels in all of them. He happens to incorporate my favourite styles (what luck!), and his moves are always spot-on perfect.

Me stringing a line of praise and superlatives may come off as unconvincing, even disingenuous. So let me provide video footage of John’s dancing and point out why they blow me away like no other dancer. I embedded the videos so that they cut immediately to the part I want to discuss. That means that I’m going to post a lot of videos, but you don’t have to watch the entire clip (that’s your own choice afterwards).

My favourite moves involve head-and-chest isolations. I learned them first before attempting anything else.  A small number of dancers do it, but I have never seen anyone pull it off like Poppin John. Below you can see what I like to call “chicken head”

and here you can see what I like to call “head swipe” or “madd headd” (after Madd Chadd).

Note how isolated his head is from his neck and chest, and that it remains so even when he takes steps (not just standing around).

How about arm and body waves? No worries, that’s his specialty.

His footwork is varied and original. Look at his floating and gliding skills.

This clip below forced me to learn liquid hand waves.

Strobing is perhaps my greatest love, and there’s so little of it around (thank God for David Elsewhere, Tyson Eberly, Madd Chadd, and Flat Top). The best strobers are those that strobe more than just their arms.

I’m not the biggest fan of finger tutting, but tell me if this doesn’t bring a smile to your face.

Speed control. Moving your body real fast, then incredibly slow, perhaps even stopping on a dime, then going into overdrive again. Often overlooked, but it’s real important to build up contrasts in your dancing. That will make your dancing stand out. Check out his shoulders in this clip.

Too bad there’s no interview planned. That’d be too crazy, right?
You’d be surprised. Stay tuned for more.

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  1. HOHONG
    December 22, 2011 at 3:37 am

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cZveV3HX9E4&list=UUqdg1emPjhLUsSXbJ8X3UmQ&index=33&feature=plcp Lol this clip shows the pinnacle of ticking/ strobing of Poppin John and he strobes every part of his body check it out

    • December 27, 2011 at 12:58 pm

      Sorry, the video won’t load. But I believe you (it’s popping john, for God’s sake). Also check out Flat Top for someone who tries to strobe his entire body.

      • HOHONG
        January 7, 2012 at 6:21 am

        Yeah hes really cool too he is one of my inspirations!! Dope website man! Hope you continue posting stuff in this web 😀

  1. July 3, 2010 at 9:18 am

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