Your style is defined by your story

In part 2 of it four part series, We get to know some of the characters and personalities that make the world of breaking so special.

Get to know Logistix.

Logistix, born Logan Edra, was one of the designated “BC One All-Stars” to make the journey for the regional cipher. With stops in Austin, New York City, Philadelphia, Orlando, Boston, Chicago and Seattle, the Red Bull BC One All-Star Tour is designed to inspire the next generation of breakers. Logistix and a number of other prominent members of the breaking community hosted workshops, community jams, panels and show battles, all with the goal of giving back to the community and mentoring future b-boys and b-girls. In many ways, Logistix embodies the world of crushing. The night before the cipher, she hosted a free and publicly accessible workshop for aspiring breakers. People of all shapes and sizes, ethnicities, ages and backgrounds were in attendance. Some looked to be in their 40s or 50s, while others couldn’t have been more than 12-15 years old – they were all brought together by this extraordinary, inclusive community.

The workshop room was hot and humid. About 20 aspiring breakers were stacked in a dance studio not much larger than your average living room. The dancers were visibly sweating as the humidity was clearly getting better. Everyone except Logistix, who got more exercise than sweat that night. It was as if she was unable to get tired. Effortlessly cool. Her bubbly, energetic personality radiated throughout the room as she guided the beginners through various routines.

YOur style is defined by your story. The thing about style is that it comes naturally. You are that.”

– B-Boy All-Star Phil Wizard

At one point, Logistix noticed a young girl who was having trouble keeping up with her other peers. She seemed insecure, unable or unwilling to express her identity with a collection of relative strangers. Logistix walked over to the girl while everyone practiced in their own room. She started dancing with her, one on one. No words were spoken. Everything that needed to be said was conveyed through her body language. The girl’s face lit up as she started breaking up with someone she undoubtedly admired and possibly idolized. A smile didn’t leave the girl’s face for the rest of the evening. That’s what the culture break is all about. It’s about uplifting those around you. It’s about community. It’s about love.

“It’s natural for us to work from a single place,” Logistix later told me. “During the fight, of course, I try to hit my opponent. But off the ground, it’s about uplifting others and connecting with each other. This is the only way we will grow.”

She did her best to make everyone attending the workshop feel welcome, often highlighting those who really found their groove while encouraging those who seemed a little insecure.

“I look really stupid right now, but it’s okay,” she exclaimed while demonstrating a specific move.

They were words of reassurance at a time when many in the room probably needed them. She knew how to talk to people, but more importantly, she knew how to communicate with body language. Of course, that shouldn’t come as a surprise as her passion, breaking, ultimately boils down to expressing yourself with your body. Right there, in that warm and humid dance studio, Breaking brought people together in more ways than one.

The Breaking World is a massive community made up of a cornucopia of gifted artists with larger than life personalities.

They are all individuals, and as much as Breaking emphasizes community, it is based on the concept of individuality. During my time in Seattle I’ve had the opportunity to meet a number of incredibly unique and interesting people, but perhaps none have been as sane and memorable as KydSteez.

KydSteez describes itself as “a multifaceted brand rooted in the hip-hop social movement for positive change.” He’s a self-proclaimed b-boy, fashion designer, model, activist, business innovator, leader, and everything in between. But the KydSteez I spoke to was down to earth, humble and friendly. He spoke softly, articulately and calculated with his words. KydSteez loves to break, but that’s only part of his overall mission. He wants to create change for people who grew up like him. You see, KydSteez grew up in separate households with a schizophrenic mother and an alcoholic father.

He grew up in a “dysfunctional, low-income” family. Breaking was an escape. Later in life, KydSteez developed epilepsy. He was in a coma at three different times in his life due to seizures. He lost his memory several times and had to relive the death of his mother. This is the hand KydSteez was dealt in life. His mission was to make the best of a catastrophic situation, with the aim of ensuring that others don’t have to go through the same struggles as he did. Breaking is a means to an end. It’s a way to build your brand.

“Hip-hop is the most powerful branding platform in human history,” KydSteez said. As much as he loves and respects breaking culture, he wants aspiring b-boys and b-girls to market themselves. He wants them to know their worth. It’s part of its mission to advance financial literacy in America.

“I’m a B-Boy because I learned and love the culture, but I’m a KYD because I’ve recognized myself within the breaking community, as an independent brand and company, and because I wanted to leave my own legacy to my descendants as a.” intellectual property,” KydSteez proudly proclaimed. “I can’t make a spare dollar on the term ‘B-Boy’, but I can make a residual dollar on the term ‘KYD’.”

but What is a KYD?

KydSteez explained that his b-boy name was inspired by a b-boy he admired named “Kid David.” Over time, he began to think of his nickname as an acronym, loosely translating to “Keep Your Dreams, Style With Ease.” He pointed to his pants as he showed me a logo he had printed on his clothing. It was one of many iterations of the KydSteez logo he’s created over the years.

B-boy and b-girl names are all about branding and marketing yourself. They express who you are as a person.

“It’s something that describes your style,” CrissyB remarked. Her b-girl name was given to her in high school. She used to have blue hair, which prompted her friends to call her “Crissy Blue,” inspired by the Tommy James & The Shondells song “Crystal Blue Persuasion.” Over time, this became “CrissyB”. Today, she says, the “B” can stand for anything. Sometimes she is “CrissyBeast”. Other times she is ‘CrissyBrat’. It all depends on their mood.

KydSteez knows all about using their groundbreaking platform to express themselves and showcase their brand. But he doesn’t do this for clout. He wants to encourage change. He compared the fractured world to his experiences as an African American.

“I’m a black man in America. From the history of what our people have been through, how many things have been taken from us in terms of intellectual property. Even if everything has been taken from your culture, you can still garnish something from it by noting, articulating and distorting.”

KydSteez is living proof that you can’t judge a book by its cover. Some people might hear his story, take one look at him in his flashy purple and green baggy dresses, and make the wrong assumptions. Instead, he’s gentle, easy-going, and quite frankly one of the smartest people I’ve had the privilege of speaking to. Everyone in the breaking world has a reason. His reason stems from his difficult upbringing and his desire to inspire change.

“I want to give kids a free program that teaches them how to recognize who they are and how to avoid being blackmailed,” said KydSteez. The term he likes to use is “blackmail yourself” rather than letting others blackmail you. He believes this ideology helps fight income inequality, mental health issues in our society, and even systemic racism. It all starts with being able to brand yourself, capitalize on your identity and leverage your story.

KydSteez is the epitome of individualism in braking. It’s a walking, talking brand that uses its platform to impact social change.

But every b-boy and b-girl has their own brand. They all have their own stories and expressions that make them who they are. This story is defined by your name, your clothes, your mannerisms, your facial expressions and anything else you can think of. Essentially your style.

“Your style is defined by your story,” said B-Boy All-Star Phil Wizard. “The thing about style is that it comes naturally. You are that.”

Breaking allows people to express themselves as individuals. They can share their stories with the world. And as KydSteez so eloquently pointed out, “You have a free opportunity.” Anyone can do it. It’s about making something out of nothing. Just you and a dance floor. No clubs or sticks. No balls or pucks.

Just you and your flow.

Part 3 of this four part series arrives tomorrow. Be sure to check back then to learn more about the athletes who competed in Red Bull BC One and the main Cypher event. Your style is defined by your story

John Verrall

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