Los Angeles Trade Tech College

Los Angeles Trade Technical College

400 West Washington Blvd. (Downtown LA) Los Angeles, CA. 90015

Social Relation:

Founded in 1925 the college is the oldest of the campuses that make up the Los Angeles Community College District. In 1970, the surrounding South Central and Watts areas were still recovering from the 1965-Watts Riots. The uprising had left a path of destruction that decimated the business and community districts of south Los Angeles. That year, Don Campbell, enrolled into Los Angeles Trade Technical College to study commercial art.

Hiphop Outcome:

In 1970, as a student at Los Angeles Trade Technical College, Don Campbell invented “The Campbellock.” His groundbreaking new dance overtook the dance floors of Los Angeles and quickly spread across the United States. The dance itself consisted of momentarily freezing or “locking.” The dance also featured upper body movements and comical pauses between moves. Improvisation proved a key component of the new dance, as Campbell recalled, “One time I feel down and improvised that into my dance. Everyone clapped!

In 1973, Don Campbell would go on to develop “The Campbellock Dancers.”The colorful dance troupe prided themselves on outrageous fashions like spotted large apple hats, knickers, striped socks, and suspenders. Don and “The Campbell Lockers” appeared on numerous TV shows such as, The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson, Saturday Night Live, What’s Happening, and The Oscars. The dance troupe also performed with some of the greatest entertainers of all time such as: Bill Cosby, Aretha Franklin, Stevie Wonder, Roberta Flack, Richard Pryor, and Cheech & Chong. A decade later, internal conflict and the pursuit of individual ventures ended the dance troupe. The Campbell Lockers consisted of future television stars, recording artists, and dance choreographers such as, Fred Berry (“Rerun” from TV’s What’s Happening), Toni Basil (recording artist with No. 1 pop hit “Mickey”), Slim the Robot, Fluky Luke, Greg “Campbellock Jr.” Pope, Adolfo “Shabba-Doo” Quinones (“Ozone” from the films-Breakin’ and Breakin’ 2: Electric Boogaloo), and Denney Terrio (host of 80s TV’s Dance Fever).

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