I used to write my name on other people’s property. I’ve been mostly retired from street bombing (I won’t pretend I was an artist) for years now, but I still casually follow graf and it will be embedded in my soul forever. I’m in my 30s with kids now and most people I know to this day still call me “ESKAY” which is a variation of the tag I wrote for so many years.
EASY is a legendary NYC street bomber who was one of the true kings of the 5 boroughs in the 80’s and 90’s. At some point during this period (late 80s early 90s) him and his partner, the late and equally legendary JOZ, came through my hometown of Yonkers on an epic bombing spree that me and some of my friends who grew up writing still talk about to this day. They came straight up South Broadway, the city’s main strip, and destroyed store gates and walls on both sides of the street, all the way to Getty Square at the center of town. Back in those days, the buff was slow and those tags ended up running for years. As a young kid discovering graf in the late 80s, I can’t begin to tell you how influential that one bombing run was on me.
In those days I would travel to Brooklyn with my parents to see family and spot JOZ and EASY tags along the entire route. They were the first writers I ever recognized as being truly all-city, and for them to have come through my shitty little town and even bothered to leave tags behind was a huge deal to an aspiring young writer.
Sacha Jenkins spoke to EASY for the new issue of Mass Appeal, and he spoke briefly about one of his trips to Yonkers:
One time, me, Gast, Chama and Joz got off on the last stop on the 2 train. We did our thing as we walked up towards Yonkers. A pickup truck tried to run Joz over. Ten minutes later, we saw like 12 cop cars coming at us. That was nerve-racking. They thought we were up to some other criminal activities. They took us to the precinct. They kept Joz and Chama because they were too young to get released. Meanwhile, I still had my cans on me. They didn’t search me thoroughly enough. I always kept my cans tucked in nicely at my back. But they didn’t care about the graffiti because of the initial accusations. They thought we were trying to break into people’s homes.
It’s too ill to read an account of that trip directly from the source. We used to speculate on how they managed to kill South Broadway so thoroughly and what time of the night they came through. We wondered about their bombing strategy and whether or not they made it out without catching a beatdown or a charge from the notoriously brutal Yonkers PD. We were toys back then, I can say that now, but that EASY and JOZ mission inspired us to be great. I would eventually start meeting writers from the city, REAL writers who would take me under the wing and teach me the tricks of the trade: bombing, boosting and evading the law. But that EASY and JOZ mission is probably one of the main reasons I started writing.