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I think a big factor is that musicality sounds good to everyone. Music is universally loved, with even non beatboxers (normal people as I like to call them ;P) being able to enjoy a routine from Gene or sh0h.

Technicality on the other hand is an acquired taste, which only those who understand technicality can truly appreciate. I remember when I first started out, seeing Alem with a metronome was amazing, but I wouldn’t have called him one of the best by any stretch.

Now that I am able to understand more of Alem’s beats, I’d definitely call him one of the best.

So when people with varying styles and abilities (i.e. the crowd) hear a musical beat, everyone can appreciate it. But with technical beats, only those who hear the patterns really appreciate it. For others, the reaction is more of a “wow, that’s fast”, rather than “this is going to be stuck in my head all week”.

Take for example Slizzer’s wildcard for GBB17. I can recall most of it off the top of my head, and have listened to it dozens of times since it was posted. I can’t remember any CLR beats off the top of my head though, since it is easier to remember something musical than something more intricate and technical.

I’m not saying technicality is bad, I love it and really want to improve my own technicality. But what I am saying is that musical beats are more likely to illicit a reaction out of people than technical beats are.

Another reason for musicality’s new popularity, in my opinion, is that Alem won the world champs last year. Alem is amazingly talented, and I think this has set the bar really high for technical beatboxers. If the judges hear a technical beat, they are probably less likely to be surprised (they might even think “Alem did it better”).

Whereas hearing more musical beatboxing might seem more original, and is less likely to get you compared to the best beatboxer in the world.


At the end of the day though, variation and different styles are what helps art forms grow. I really hope the newfound popularity of musicality doesn’t discourage technical beatboxers. That would be an absolute shame, and would negatively impact beatboxing as a whole.

Tryin to make a change :-\