Pop Culture Reflection: Beat Boxin’ Pioneers

1 Jan

My props to the beatbox

One perk about growing up in the 80s is remembering and appreciating beat boxin’ skills from hip hop pioneers like The Fat Boys, Police Academy actor and comedian Michael Winslow and rap icon Doug E Fresh.

My description of human beat boxin’ is anyone who can create or mimic the sounds of a drum machine (a.k.a. beat box ) through vocal percussion. This is one of the coolest skills that I think anyone could have.

The Fat Boys were a popular hip hop trio in the mid 80s.  They covered the song Wipe Out and had a popular music video for it and they also filmed a comedy called Disorderlies in 1987. I loved this movie as a kid and my favorite part of the movie was when they sing Baby You’re a Rich Man.  Darren Robinson known as the human beat box of the trio was simply amazing to listen to and watch in his beat boxin’ action. Robinson sadly passed away in 1995 but his pioneering role in beat boxin’ lives on.

I also remember the first time I watched Police Academy and listening to all of the insane noises Michael Winslow could mimic with his mouth. He could even sound like a guitar and that blew me away as a kid.

My whole beat box reflection triggered after watching a recent episode of the The Arsenio Hall Show which I have been tuning into ever since Hall made a come back with his classic late show.

The show featured Doug E Fresh beat boxin’ and making his signature clicks sound that only his tongue can make. So many artists have covered his classic hit Lodi Dodi and it really doesn’t get any better than that song which sort of sums up the 80s beat boxin’ era for me.

Beat boxin’ has made a comeback with newer artists who are more in the spot light now than their 80s pioneers like Kenny Mohammed or french beat box great Alem.

My heart still hangs on to the 80s time of beat boxin’ and hip hop, after all it’s what I grew up listening to.

Below is a link from Adam Mcnasty You Tube channel showing my favorite beat box legend clip from the movie Disorderlies.

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