Editorial: Interview with Steve “SugarFoot” Notario
INTERVIEW WITH PIONEER Steve ” SUGARFOOT” Natorio
& his story of locking as he experienced the history
Lockerlegends was fortunate enough to sit down with one of the pioneers who pioneered the way for locking from the stage to the big screen with his appearance as “Strobe“ in the movie “BREAKING II“. But what makes him unique is he’s one that’s not just a commercial stage Locker , his love and fascination for Locking help bridged the gap by his coming into the streets of South Central Los Angeles in the mid 1970s to learn directly from original street legends. So he was exposed to not just the dance, but the entire subculture of Locking from its origin. People who saw the movie may know him as Strobe be we know him as Steve “Sugarfoot” Natorio. Steve comprised a flow chart (below) which takes us through the early inspirations to the present, also Him and his wife (Dana) Has created and exiting new Dance board game , designed to not just entertain but to educate. (dance board game is no longer available)
The Locking Charts
Question: Hey steve its great to have you with us , This Chart you have constructed is remarkable what inspired you to create it ?
Steve: Well being taught from the old school, I felt it was my obligation to give back, you know I tell the story about how I wanted to learn the real back in the mid 1970s, and that I would come into the city, along with my partner Tony “Crackerjack” Pierce and we would knock on Og SkeeterRabbits door and ask him to come out and teach us , and he would right there in his drive way in South Central Los Angeles, we were Kids from the supburbs, and Tony Had this flaming red hair and freckles, so he stood out as we travled through the Hoods of LA.. but Dancers Like Skeet, “Peekaboo” Frenke and Greg “Campmbellock Jr” really took care of us both on the streets and in the clubs. we learned the real culture and back ground right along with learning the steps. so I put this chart together to show what I learned about the influences that made locking great.
This is the top section of the large chart and it shows the cultural influences that influenced the very moves and attitude of Locking, it shows the struggles, and leaders that fought for the very movement, which was inspired and carried on by artist, athletes and other great people , but many people are not taught this, it was also carried onthrough Locking and streetdance and we must give back to that which gave to us.
Question: we see the second part is a time line tracing locking and its events. How did you come up with this time frame concept ?
Steve: well you know it was very disappointing to see and read so many things that was so in accurate. A lot of people out there want credit for an artform they think they know , but have no idea of how it went, and what I saw and learned back then I just wanted to pass on. We all know Don Campbell started this whole thing by putting the gestures he was inspired by into his unique style of dancing, which became Campbellocking, but the street movement, which contributed by so many people and dancers seemed to be over looked, And also the way the dance migrated from the hoods and the city of Los Angeles to the supburbs of Orange County and then later to Las Vegas , where I now live is a story that needed to be told through illustrations so that’s what I did. In those days there was tremendous racial tension.And People need to know that at first this was just a urban streetdance from the Hoods, So if you wanted to learn it right you had to be from there or at least hang out there, not just catch glimpses of it on TV. but with Locking it just kept growing and inspirng people of all areas and colors.and the Dancers from the hoods were eventually accepted in the supburbs. The movement of struggle became a movement of rhythm..
Notice the many dancers that existed before the group the Lockers were formed , the chart starts with Don Campbell and flows down through Watts, California and to Soul Train to The GoGo brothers, Creative Generation and the Ghetto Dancers, Then from the streets and small stages, To the big stage and Television, with “The Lockers” ,and “33rpm”,the dance continued to grow spreading from the city to the suburbs with groups like The Funky Bunch all the way to Las Vegas with “Dancing Machine” and where groups like the “Footlockers” graced the stage with locking for years and Today the dance continues to grow. The chart flows from the original streets to a new generation of GoGo brothers in Japan
Question : We see that you included a list of Ogs that you believe influenced the Artform of Locking the most, why these Dancers ?
Steve: Well there are a few that I left off and I wanna mention them now. That’s the first to pioneer robot as a party dance,Charles “Robot” Washington, He was great. and Sambo Lock who was one of Don’s first dance friends, But all of the people on the chart were not only around from near the beginning,But they weren’t just performers they were street party dancers, who’s funk and creativity, contributed to the dance. they lived the streets and clubs. They didn’t take lessons they were the lessons. sure there were others who came along who did great things, and many of them who are true to the game will tell you they learned from watching or being around these dancers.
There are many famous dancers not on this chart, but these were the ones that had a profound influence with there contributions before there was ever a performance of Locking
Question: Well Steve thanks for the explanation on the chart. But lets now get to your career, So what are your memorable experiences?
Steve: Well outside of the first time I saw the inside of Mavericks Flats. Its got to be dancing with my friends in the group “Funky Bunch” And then professionally, getting into the finals of The TV show Star Search with my group “The Footlockers” Also, I have to be thankfull for the 20yrs I spent dancing here in Vegas in the show Splash. Those were some great times.
THE FUNKY BUNCH
L to R
Vince Sherlock Haper, Tony Crackerjack Pierce, Anna Lolipop Sanchez, Steve Shookaboo Wallace, Steve Sugarfoot Notario
Question: But steve you didn’t mention one of your most memorable performances as a dancer and a Actor ?
Steve: Well yep ! Locking opened many doors for me, I guess many out there know me as “Strobe” in the movie “Breaking ” Electric Boogaloo II, and that was a great expierience. but the movie did confused a lot of people about streetdance, and it was diffrent than what I had learned about real life and dancing in the hood, and the terms definitely was confusing. Today I still meet people who say hey you and Ozone are some of the best Breakers that we have ever seen. As you real Dancers know we don’t break .Breaking ,Popping and Locking are three seperate dances. it confused the world .. ELECTRC BOOGALOO BREAKING 2
Question: Hey Steve you have another venture going wanna tell us about it
Steve: yep My wife and I thought that since there was so much that the world didn’t know about the dance world we would create a Board game called DANCEOPOLY its great fun and you can learn alot by playing , anyone who wants to learn more cane find it at the link below
Well Steve we at Lockerlegends want to thank you for sharing, and we think DANCEOPOLY is great
Steve: I wanna thank Lockerlegends not just for this interview but more than that for spreading the Real..