I got into graff around 88/89...graff was crazy in b'ham, the buses were hammered. I just remember seeing maaad bright colours in these subways by my house. I didn't have a clue what it said...but I just remember being mystified by it...who, what, when???????
Early influences were Zuke, Rote, Rate all old NHS crew, CBS, Mef, Miami, Sketch, Atiske. Rate used to live in Brum and I was heavily inspired by his mass bombing of B'ham....especially Smallheath, Sparebrook areas which were hammered!!
How has the scene changed over time...with the buff, graff squad, extra security etc.....
The scene is truly truly wack now compared to the magical ghetto adventure that I was immersed in 99% of the time coming up....1st I never paid for a single thing...from paint to munchies to travel....Life was 100% free!!! It's just too accessible these days, where there used to be an air of mystery about graf. I was so enthusiastic an dedicated....U know, u'd like follow a writers work and eventually bump into them by chance. I remember back in the day I was on Waterloo platform half asleep on a bench after doing an all nighter, I sort of come round and noticed this guy next to me sorta looking at me.....I looked for the tell tale signs i.e paint or ink on clothes and hands...got chatting an it turned out to be Akt TBF...he was a kool guy. We went an racked up and then went painting in Tufnell Park.
Secondly there used to be a writers bench at Wimbledon station...crazy crazy time. This is where I hooked up with Cosa DDS, AC, DTB around 96 times....damn those were good times...such an adventure...we would wake up fill our pens and the whole day would be a constant raise, rack bomb and piss up.....then on the night we'd go do tracks or yards. He really brought me in and showed me a truly truly gritty grimy life immersed in the London underground....him and Zonk.
Birmingham has a long history of graffiti and breaking...what's the scene like now and who's smashing it?
Yeah B'ham is kool...i've always loved it here an theres truly some quality writers I respect an who have influenced me. Unfortunately the scene has been watered down much like London. Writers are like completely different breed these days...however there are a handful of writers that still smash it. Admittedly not to the extent that I did...i.e dubs, bombing, tags, pieces...da whole 9!!!!
Buses, trains, canals, street dubs, tracksides with every type of graff you can think of...infact i'd liken myself dedication wise to your Zombie's, Cosa's and Zonk's etc!!!!!!
What mission / night sticks out from the rest where you walked away with "that feeling"!!
Golders Green layup with Cosa and Zonk in 96!! We chilled on top of tunnel in bushes after cutting through back of redbrick flats that overlook the layup. It was my first T2B wholecar on one of those old silver Northern lines!!!! I'd done BR's but this was truly truly inspirational shit!!! I even lined my cans on the lip where the doors are (just like Dondi in Subway Art!!!) I remember halfway through, we see lights an voices coming from in the tha tunnel!! Shiiit we hid in bushes on trackside an watched them walk by....then when they were gone we went back an finished em!!! Vivid in my head many many similar missions like this with Cosa, Zonk, who in those days were 100% smashin the back, front an sides out of London!!! Legends in my eyes (good friends)
NHS are one of Birmingham's biggest crews with alot of younger writers in it. It's one of London's longest standing crews going back to the 80's. How did it end up spreading to Birmingham?
Well back in the day around 88 -90 Rate was sent to B'ham to live with his family as he was a lil ragga ruffian!! lol.....basically his fam sent him to birmz to stay out of trouble...on his first night in B'ham he said to his Dad, i'm going for a lil walk....where he lived was dead in the eppicentre of a da graff scene (writers bench, southside) ..notorious location for writers to meet etc...from that day our legendary friend Mr Rateismrockinbrum was born!!!! He hooked up with local writers much the same as I did when I touched down in London....Nasty Habits was to appear throughout B'ham in those days!!! Basically I was a lil lil yout those times, but I knew who they all were as I was that cheeky lil kidin those days.....as I got older an started to establish myself an really really bomb da fuck out of B'ham 'Rote' who was Rate's best pal put me down with NHS....then I just carried the tradition an put writers who I thought were truly reppin down also.......
Today there is a good North/South connection with each party fully aware of each other!!! Some historical shit right there!!!! Toys better know!!!!
Your also in DDS and FBS, how did that come about?
DDS, FBS....I was down with FBS first....Zombie my loooong time compatriot, friend and family put me in it from those days!!! DDS was definite exclusive shit back then.....I mean me as a northener (bumpkin lol) in those days u had to been brought in!!! U had to truly pay your dues to be down with DDS....I mean u see writers these days puttin it up without the true knowledge or respect that the crew commands ( in my eyes)...one thing I would say is that that crew was everything a crew should be !!! Not just a random collection of people.....they were first and foremost friends.....I was sorta fringe back then, just bn a lil thug on the streets of London pilfering, destroying an just being an all out menace to society!!! lol. These people are/were friends...an it just shows...it's all about mentality!!! Where writers were getting jacked and terrorised on site, I was rollin da streets of London without a care in the world an being accepted into this society of thuggggishnesss with relative ease!!! Love them all!!! Best memories of my life (blesssss)
What does the future hold for Mr Korsa?
Well i've sort of been there an done that got the t shirt and did the jail to reflect!!!!! Now?? I'm jus working to support my beautiful daughters an painting as much as I can!! I'd love to bomb, it never leaves u, the urge....but anyone who isn't a complete knuckle head realises after a while that life has its priorities!!!!! mine bn kids my kids) I wouldn't change a single thing/experience i've had graff wise but for now i'm just gonna enjoy bussin out the odd burner here an there!!!! An all u cats know I burn right?!?!?! lol...
What advice would you give for the younger cats coming up in today's scene?
My advice would be to always be yourself, don't try and n be something your not!!! If your a rocker, be a rocker.....if your a skater, be a skater......I can respect and level with anyone who I can see is real!!! Whatever reality that may be!!!! lol maybe i'm a bit more forgiving these days tho!!! hahahaha....certainly wasn't the case back in the day!!! stay true an stay humble!!!!
Any last shouts out?
Shouts!!!!!!! Hell yeah....big up Owed!! truly a kool kool bruvva!! Zombie, Cosa, Zonk, Teach, Fume, Merok, Flea, Mefa, (Doa) haven't forgot ya!! Zuke, Goldie, Mef, Ndeva, Assasin, Arest, Else, Page, Kayko (Somes) Clears, Tempo 33, Dusk, Ripa, Enve, Reas (Bham) Binty, Pera, Bler, Hush, Soho, Take, Bozo, Band, Drax, Elk and all u ugly fuckers that know me!!!! Also not forgetting my lil princesses Shaney Lee Lexy.......Peace 2 ya'll blesssss!!