Now imagine my surprise when I was watching America's Best Dance Crew last night and on comes The Striker All-Stars. I can remember being a kid and watching The Strikers. Watching this latest incarnate was interesting. It looks as though they've taken the Strikers in more of a step direction. I can remember when they were some straight dancing machines...I mean Luke dancers (if you from the south you know what I mean) had nothing on them. It's nice to get a chance to see the evolution of this dance crew. I definitely know who I will be voting for but I guess I'm a little bias....
Tallie "Ace" Brinson III (24)
Otheus "O" Manuel (25)
Peterson Thelisma (23)
Edwin "Bowling Ball" Bennett (25)
Michael "Money Mike" Washington (24)
Welton Maurice Nance (23)
Joel Daley (20)
Established in 1989 at Florida A&M University, Strikers All-Stars’ motto is, “If you can survive being a Striker, you can survive anything.” It's beyond notable that most of the members of this crew chose to attend FAMU in order join this famous stepping family because The Strikers aren’t merely a dance crew; they are a legacy.
This crew -- an elite seven-man unit comprised of the FAMU Strikers' strongest performers -- has won competitions on BET's 106 & Park and won over the notoriously fickle Showtime at the Apollo audience. They are, in short, considered one of the top stepping crews in the South.
"Many people think it's all the same," Ace says of stepping. "but we have created this style that is mimicked by numerous dance crews." That style comes from all seven members contributing to The Strikers' choreography and adding a freestyle hip-hop element to the more widely known precision elements. "We're unpredictable, full of energy," says Peterson. Adds Money Mike: "Our urban soul matched with our energy -- it can get ridiculously crazy!"
To that point, the crew lists a lot of hip-hop on among musical favorites, including OutKast, Flo Rida, T Pain, T.I., Rick Ross, Jay Z, Timbaland and Swizz Beats, along with some contemporary pop from the likes of John Legend, Chris Brown and Justin Timberlake.
"In a way, we have played through our season and we're about to play in the Super Bowl -- America's Best Dance Crew," says Bowling Ball. "Our advantage is that everybody on our team is a Pro Bowl-er."