Oscar surprises are generally about as exciting as a dry toast, but last night during the Academy Awards show, Experience Unlimited bandleader Gregory “Sugar Bear” Elliott got the shock of a lifetime.
In a movie music trivia segment led by actor Lil Rel Howery and the evening’s musical director, Questlove, actress Glenn Close, nominated for her performance in Hillbilly Elegy, not only successfully identified EU’s 1988 hit “Da Butt,” which was featured in Spike Lee’s film School Daze, she also gave a shout out to “Sugar Bear, Backyard Band, and the whole DMV” before getting up to briefly dance Da Butt. While the moment inspired both great hilarity and cynical speculation on social media, it was gratifying for the go-go community of artists and fans.
“This was totally unexpected and amazing, like I won the lottery. I can’t even put into words what it means for me personally and for go-go culture,” Sugar Bear says. “That right there? I’m speechless.”