LA Graff Innovator..........PRIME-K2S...
Interview by: Lee Majors for 50mm
Transcribed by: Lady Godiva
....youâ€™re going to see Prime until the day I die. -
And I believe it!!!!
Now-a-days when you think of the LA graff scene a few names and crews
automatically come to mind. And itâ€™s cool and all cuz LA gets repped hard
and gets repped globally but there was a time before them kats and even the
90â€™s. A time when graff was still fresh, a time when a writer single handedly
took on an entire crew, structured and shaped the graffiti scene all with just
one single piece. A member of one of the OG crews in LA, K2S (Kill To
Succeed) Prime, always sought out to innovate the scene with style and
color-schemes. His style dominated the LA graff scene for nearly a decade
and is often referenced to as an influence and a major contributor to building
the foundation of our current LA graff scene.
I sat down with this trailblazing artist over some Strawberry Frappucinos to
ask him a few questions about his graffiti endeavors and then some. In a
long over due interview, 50mm bringsyou this special interview to salivate on.
So with no more delay, I bring you old-school kats who know whatâ€™s up and
you new-school fools that need to know whatâ€™s up, the interviewâ€¦
6M$M: Alright, lets talk about some of your earlier influences. What
Prime: My influences came a lot from gang-writings, cement carvings and
stuff. I also started doing Old-English blocks in the neighborhood and
around. But I began writing around â€˜81 and then I saw the movie Dreams
Donâ€™t Die, did you ever see that movie?
6M$M: Yeah man - I actually have that movie. Dondi did most of the graff.
Ike Eisenhower from Escape From Witch Mountain is in it and also Trini
Prime: Yeah, Dondi was dope. He had a lot of influence on me. So when I
saw that, I said, â€œWow, thatâ€™s some really cool shit right thereâ€ Then breaking
came and I started seeing more graff. Then Iâ€™d go to the Radio-Tron and I
met Crime and Shandu. They were already advanced and shit so I got more
influences from them, you know?
6M$M: So the first writers you saw were like RickOne andâ€¦
Prime: Yeah, Rick and Shandu. Soon was also one of the first writers Iâ€™d
seen and Duke also. These guys influenced me a lot. But Iâ€™d have to say
that Def was one of my biggest influences. I liked he was dedicated to his
paintings and drawings and always had them neat. Def also liked to invent a
lot of stuff and I like that about him too.
6M$M: yeah, til this day his stuff is sharp. So what about your style? Which,
for a while, was iconic for LA. Who would you compare your style too?
Prime: Iâ€™d have to say Def. He had that cubic style which seemed to come
easy to us cuz of the blocks, you know? And then heâ€™d add like coloring and
color patches, wild lines and arrows and stuff. My style was a little more
chunkier letters and fill-ins. But in the old times we would all try to develop
and use all kinds of letters. Weâ€™d try to use all the fonts and every single kind
of letter and develop from there, you know? I donâ€™t think I had a certain style
but I do think it did influence a lot of people later.
6M$M: Right. I personally believe your style had a big influence in LA. Your
style, in particular, had a big influence on the later STN stuff, right? I can also
boldly say that for other crews as well.
Cuz for a while, the first thing youâ€™d say when seeing a piece was likeâ€¦thatâ€™s
all Prime right there.
Like I said, itâ€™s not my style. I canâ€™t say it is, but other
people can say it. - Prime-K2S
Prime: Yeah, I love it man. I mean I think I saw my stuff in their stuff. But
STN were all different in their own way. I mean you kinda see that they kinda
used me as reference and I feel, well not proud, but glad. And with other
crews I could be like â€œhey that looks like my style. And I do think that kinda
separated us from the east-coast writers, even some of the west-side
writers. I honestly think thatâ€™s how we made our mark in the graff scene.
Then like, just following some of the letters they did on the east-coast, I think
some of my friends over there started writing like us too.
6M$M: Of course. Weâ€™re talking about the west-coast style, which for a
while, was represented by the blocky-style. A lot of people would have to
say that you totally made that impact in everyone and that that really put LA
on the map. It differentiated LA from NY and any other city.
Prime: Like I said, itâ€™s not my style. I canâ€™t say it is, but other people can say
it. Itâ€™s kinda cool that the letters developed that wayâ€¦for everyone.
6M$M: We know youâ€™re K2S. Tell us how you got into the crew and how the
crew was formed and whatnotâ€¦.
Prime: Well, it was like 84 or 85 or ending of 84 and Rick and Shandu were
older. Their crew, which every city had one, was L.A. Bomb Squad, you
know? San Francisco had SF Bomb Squad and so on (laughs). Anyhow,
some of them were getting older and began having a family and stuff but Rick
was still hungry and started K2S. Of course GEO, who was his best friend,
was in it and then he asked me to be in it. I was on cloud nine cuz I was
going to be next to these guys that were doing the best stuff, the biggest
pieces. You know? I was like of course Iâ€™ll be in it. I will do whatever I can
for it and I dedicated myself fully to K2S.
I did a lot for K2S. I donâ€™t even know how many
pieces I did because I wouldnâ€™t take pictures. - Prime-K2S
We had a good start. I think it would have been better if we wouldâ€™ve had a
safer haven and not to say that we were doomed from the beginning but we
werenâ€™t in the best of positions. Tragedies struck us quick. GEO was killed.
Then we lost Sine. Then Rick went into depression then jail. It was a
confusing time for us. A lot of anger grew and built up in us and not knowing
how to handle it, was difficult. And growing up with other things happening in
our neighborhoods like gangs and drugs, it was just too much for the crew.
But during that time, I did a lot for K2S. I donâ€™t even know how many pieces I
did because I wouldnâ€™t take pictures. I actually think itâ€™s amazing, now that I
think about it, that K2S is even out there today, you know? I do have to say
that STN kept it going for us though, more than us, you know? Relic, Repo,
Galo, Tempt - they just kept it alive for us â€œeastsidersâ€. Theyâ€™d hit up the
crew too. Cuz I wasnâ€™t painting and then after GEO, it was only Rick and he
wasnâ€™t around anymore but just me. And Cartoon too but he was out of the
scene quick. Besides he would only just draw characters, like turtles, and he
was also out chasing skirts. Then I got into some trouble, went to jail and
when I got out, I got shot. That took me out for another year or two. I kinda
recovered but I wasnâ€™t really able to use my arm again. I wasnâ€™t really able to
paint with my right hand anymore. I had to learn how to paint with my left
hand. That kinda gave everything a whole different dimension. Then I
started drawing with my right again but it was kinda weird. Anyways, I just
think, the crew would have had better success if we had a little more backing
from our parents, the community or the city or whatever. Some people did
help us out, like Peter Daniels and stuff yeah ummmâ€¦
6M$M: Carmelo Alvarez?
Prime: Yeah, like he would support us too but um, I think we could have done
more, but we survived even though a lot more people still died or went to jail
6M$M: OTIS too right? They supported you guys too. What about the first
Prime: Let me think. Where was our first gallery show? I think it was at the
photo center wasnâ€™t it? in â€˜85?
6M$M: I think the photo center was the graffiti convention. I remember
Prime: SPARC was later. I think our first show was back at the photo center.
6M$M: Well seeing that done, I mean now you see the current graffiti trend at
galleries and shows and thereâ€™s this big hype about it yet people donâ€™t realize
that people like you, Skept, Duke, Hyde etc were already doing this like two
decades ago. What do you think about that? How do you respond to it?
Some people donâ€™t consider it art while itâ€™s coming out.
Prime: yeahâ€¦I guess I respond positively to it. I mean every art has got its
gradual movement whether it is renaissance art, pop art, religious art it all
has its period of rejection from society. Some people donâ€™t consider it art
while itâ€™s coming out. Weâ€™d present the art in a nice way too, like on boards
or on canvas. Weâ€™d tried to present it well and in a confined space. I
personally do think graffiti belongs in the streets, on trains, walls or gates or
whatever. Itâ€™s something thatâ€™s priceless and given to the community and the
world and one canâ€™t come and buy it. Itâ€™s art in its purest form. Itâ€™s sorta a
gift. You canâ€™t take it home like a canvas. Youâ€™re not limited to space. I like
when I see graffiti on the streets. But we tried to put it on canvases, like in
NY you know? They were doing it a little earlier. They tried to do it and they
tried to find a way to put it on a canvas like Dondi. And we didnâ€™t know how to
do that but we tried. Like one of the pieces Duke and I did. It was like a
gangsta collage. It was a really nice piece with characters and flowers.
6M$M: more fine art?
Prime: yeah, more fine art, kinda looking. It was still considered graffiti cuz it
was done with spray paint but we gave it a different texture and look. They
would ask why we didnâ€™t paint with brushes, but weâ€™d say we didnâ€™t come up
painting with brushes, spray cans were thrown to us.
Um, the first pieces I saw that I thought were
incredible were the Risco City, the Risco and Primo, and um the Shandu and
Graf battle. - Prime-K2S
6M$M: Tell us about the first Belmont days, like the first piece(s) you saw or
some of the most memorable pieces you saw or did.
Prime: Um, the first pieces I saw that I thought were incredible were the
Risco City, the Risco and Primo, and um the Shandu and Graf battle. I know
Shandu has talked about that one. I know heâ€™s talked about that before.
Anywaysâ€¦.the cemented walls were dusty and would suck up the paint.
The wall didnâ€™t have a primer coat. We didnâ€™t even know what that was.
Weâ€™d just go there and paint, but um, I remember seeing those pieces. When
I saw the Risco City with the silhouette of the city in it, it just blew my mind.
The characters done on the Risco and the Primo were dope too. To me
those were one the coolest pieces ever seen. But we painted more at the
Radio-Tron. And there we got to know each other and develop ourselves.
We wanted to get out of our neighborhoods so weâ€™d go out racking around
different areas and hitting-up every store. Weâ€™d come up with like 50 or 60
cans cuz it was so easy. Weâ€™d then go butt-wild painting on walls, doing
throw-ups, or whatever. Anywaysâ€¦I then came back to the tunnel around
86. I painted a piece, a Prime with a little robot. That piece made me realize I
was getting better. But before that piece we had done a GEO and a Time
piece that I painted with Rick and Galo. The Time piece was one of the first
times we painted with white tips. We had never painted with white tips. The
GEO was stock tips. But stencil tips man, they painted so clean. From then
on it was like Iâ€™m never going back. Thatâ€™s how I did those lines and those
tricks on that Prime piece, you know?
6M$M: Yahâ€¦your fill-ins were also a pivotal point in graffiti because it had
those sharp lines and stuff and everyone was like, wow. Theyâ€™d keep talking
about that piece when you busted out with that styleâ€¦.
Prime: yeahâ€¦after that Prime I did a K2S. It was supposed to have an STN
too but I didnâ€™t have enough paint. I think I did patches on the Prime and on
the K2S I did more arrows, kinda chubby and crossing in between each
other, like going into different directions. I donâ€™t think I ever did that coloring
again. But after that K2S I got really sick and I had to stop for a while. I know
the paint didnâ€™t affect me. It was something else. When I came back I tried to
change styles specially since I saw many painting like me. I Felt I had to
change. So I began doing simple lettering with silvers.
Skept had some friends that had traveled to Europe and this one time they
brought back some pictures with a bunch of throw-ups with silvers and I
noticed how theyâ€™d reflect in the nighttime. I think for a while many were just
infatuated with colors: like Hot Pink or Turquoise and I just somehow thought
that silver was cooler cuz youâ€™d be able to see my piece at night. So Skept
and I did this K2S and STN in silvers at the tunnel and from then on I guess it
got a lot of peopleâ€™s attention and we just took it is as our home color.
6M$M: Yeah - Thatâ€™s like another thing I also have to attribute to K2S/STNâ€¦
silvers! Everyone back then was all about colors. Hot Pinks, the Baby Blues,
the Plums, Jungle Greens etc but here you and Skept come with silvers and
all of a sudden you start seeing silvers left and right until this day.
Prime: Yeah. Of course itâ€™s not my idea again but influenced by someone
else. All I did was bring it attention. I remember Dream fell in love with silvers
and did so many too. I know he would get cases and cases of silvers and
maybe another color like red, blue or black for outlining and would paint like
the biggest pieces. He took it to the extreme and became well known for
that. I was personally okay with it cuz he was having fun with it.
6M$M: I think a writer that was way ahead of his time was GEOâ€¦..
Prime: GEO was, awe man. He died so young and so early in graffiti. He
was one of the few. Back then you can probably count the number of
writers. Maybe a dozen or two. I think GEO was up even when the buses
werenâ€™t even RTD yet. Man, his tags were really smooth. Kinda handwriting
or twirls on his lowercase Gâ€™s or Eâ€™s. Iâ€™d see his tags on the window side of
the driver and itâ€™d look like he took his time. He would actually take his time
because he was a slow writer in a way and it was kind of like he wanted to
tease and getâ€™em mad because he was writing in front of their faces. (laughs)
But when he wanted to, he would do throw-ups really fast and whatnot. I
donâ€™t think that since weâ€™ve been painting, I donâ€™t think weâ€™ve ever forgotten
him. It was just tragic to see him go. He was just the best friend ever. Like
Sine too or Risco, Easie, and Minus,
It was on a Saturday, Relic and Repo picked me up
and we started painting it with baby blue house paint and rollers to fill in the
spots we couldnâ€™t fill in with the cans. - Prime-K2S
6M$M: Aside from the Belmont Tunnel, there was the Panic Zone. You
painted a cerebus and Iâ€™d have to say was like 100 feet tallâ€¦.
Prime: Thatâ€™s the wall behind the East LA Occupational Center isnâ€™t it? By the
10 freeway? Anyways, I was going to CSULA when I painted that and my
teacher, Mr. Twitchell, had this way of painting murals that were gridded and
used all these loose squares and have it all measured out and stuff. And he
would be fascinated by how weâ€™d paint just by sketching with a can and um, I
think I wanted, more than anything, to impress him and show him that I, we,
can paint something just as big as his murals and not have to grid it up. It
was on a Saturday, Relic and Repo picked me up and we started painting it
with baby blue house paint and rollers to fill in the spots we couldnâ€™t fill in with
the cans. The cerebus was floating in space, in a position ready to fight
someone with a giant sword. We had a sketch of this K2S/STN with like a
glass case and simple block style letters. We got this one ladder from the
RTD that was just down the street. It was really big and heavy. We put that
ladder on top of a shopping cart and Iâ€™d climb up and down while Repo and
Relic held the cart holding the ladder. (laughs) It got really hectic and difficult
because I was so close to the wall, I couldnâ€™t see if I had the position of the
arms or the head in perspective or correct or in even its right place. (laughs)
But it came together. I was sorta able to just look at something and sort of
project it mentally on the wall without a machine of some sort.
6M$M: That was pretty gutsy.
Prime: yeahâ€¦it was scary and then it got windy. And you know Relic and
Repo werenâ€™t very strong (laughs). Their arms were really thin and small.
They were just skin and bones. I would also sometimes have to hold to the
top of the wall. It was like 5 stories high. They werenâ€™t even able to paint
over it for years. They would only get like half way into the character. They
wouldnâ€™t climb up or anything, maybe they were too scares. Anyways, the
only bad thing was that we couldnâ€™t get to finish it because they must of seen
us taking the ladder or working on it or something. They knew where weâ€™d
stashed it, so when we went back to get it it was broken up into pieces, so
the piece just ended up staying as it did.
6M$M: what about the other trademark piece for K2S and STN, The Seven
Samuraisâ€¦tell us about that.
Prime: Yeah, that was a fun piece. We did that for the Third Annual DADA
Show in the Old Country Club in Downtown LA. We sort of started out with
the idea of painting like traditional woodblock samurais and at first some were
traditional but then some kinda started turning into cartoonish kinda
characters of us. Then finally it was all of us. Slick, Tempt, Duke, myself
and Skept is the demon (laughs) on the cornerâ€“the dragon. It came together
good. Everything was a little more organized. We had scaffolding and had a
lot of paint too. The wall was like 30-40 feet high. Weâ€™d work on it like twice a
week for a month. It came along really nice and I think itâ€™s by far one of the
best pieces we were able to finish without any kind of conflict. And that â€œThe
7 Samurais From The Far East-Sideâ€ was really done to bring a sort of unity
for all of the writers in LA. It was like an offering to all them.
6M$M: Right on! So what do you think of the new style that is out?
Prime: Some of the new stuff I see, I kinda like. I like them all. I mean some
of them look a little fishy or tweaky or something like that. (laughs) But I give
them respect and cuz thatâ€™s what they do and are trying to do their thing. I
do like how these new writers get to high spaces and are gutsy and brave
you know? They can pretty much die doing it. But when I think about it we
sort of did the same thing you know. We would hit a lot of freeways and do
signs and what not and I didnâ€™t really think about it. But I guess since time
passes, you get surprised to see new kids doing it and are like â€œDamn! thatâ€™s
crazy! But weâ€™re just youâ€™re older.
......GEO was up even when the buses werenâ€™t even
RTD yet. Man, his tags were really smooth. Kinda handwriting or twirls on
his lowercase Gâ€™s or Eâ€™s. - Prime-K2S
6M$M: Youâ€™ve been featured in films like: Graffiti Veriteâ€™, Bombing LA and um
books like: The Other Sideâ€¦.youâ€™ve gotten some press in Japan in Kaze
Magazineâ€¦and was also in VIBE: The History of Hip-Hopâ€¦.
Prime: yeah the piece in that Vibe book was like â€™85. Thatâ€™ when I was still
trying to get some influence from Crime/Rick you know? That was pretty
much one of my first pieces.
6M$M: But are you pretty happy with these small interviews and features?
Prime: I guess theyâ€™ve been good to me. They say, any press is good
press. It gets you noticed and known by other people. Whether they donâ€™t
really hear or read sometimes whatâ€™s in the book, just by seeing the picture is
okay, but it takes somebody to actually read the words to understand it. I
mean the interviews arenâ€™t really long or like donâ€™t take an account of my life.
But just a simple picture of y pieces has worked out for me. I can always
show that someone put me up in there so I must have been doing something
right that gets me some kind of recognition for having spent my time painting
and show my love for graffiti.
6M$M: has this stuff opened up avenues for you like getting hot chicks?
Prime: Yeah, but it really has done in many ways is it has given me more
respect. Or it has also surprised people cuz they never realized how much I
love painting. Iâ€™ve gotten some good jobs and I am not making big-time
bucks but Iâ€™m happy. Iâ€™m grateful cuz someone took the time to put me in
these books. It has been a blessing in a way. I feel if we are all here for
some certain reason, then mine would be to paint and to be some kind of an
influence on people. I know I can inspire people to continue to fight for
survival in this world. I made it. I am still here. Itâ€™s told and released in those
books. It also shows my friendâ€™s memories which are not going to disappear
and once they read of me in the books, theyâ€™ll read about them cuz I always
6M$M: Iâ€™ve run into people that visit from Japan and when I mention you their
eyes light up and theyâ€™re like, oh, you know PRIME/K2S? Iâ€™ve also been to
Mexico and they know of you too. So people read man. I know you stopped
for a while but now you started again. What motivated you to start again?
Prime: I started walking down the street with some cans in a bag and I would
see a nice wall and I couldnâ€™t help it and I just had to hit it up. Then I couldnâ€™t
stop and every night I would do it again and again and I couldnâ€™t stop from
then. It is addicting man. Itâ€™s something about the smell, something about
that wall, the feeling, the thrill of doing something fast and avoid getting
caught. It also feels good about someone not knowing me in person but they
know my tags and thatâ€™s just as good as knowing me. Itâ€™s like a footprint or
something like a picture of me. I actually donâ€™t Iâ€™ll ever really stop you know?
Iâ€™m always catching tags here and there. Whether itâ€™d be on the bus, on a
trashcan, on a pole â€“ with scribes, with pens â€“ itâ€™s just in me.
6M$M: yeah, itâ€™s all about random spots man. So anyways talking about the
tags you kinda went old-school, like walking around. I know now and days if
one goes itâ€™s in a car right? You jump out and boom get back in the car and
drive away, but youâ€™re like walking and thatâ€™s like manâ€¦
Prime: Yeah, I like walking. Itâ€™s not to say I donâ€™t have a car or a car to ride
in. Itâ€™s just like walking gives me a time for myself to just think and enjoy the
building structures or the nature in the City of LA. You can call it maybe
something artistic in me. I love the architecture In LA. It fascinates me. I like
looking at the cement. Observe the beat down the city takes or admire a
simple pole that got hit by a car or a tree knocked down by the wind, anything
man. And if Iâ€™m walking around or ridding my bike Iâ€™m able to catch a tag.
Leave my mark. I know later on when I pass by it again, I may or may not
see it see it. Or, if someone else passed by they left their mark there and we
sort of communicate with each other and with those hat see it. Sometimes
those marks are of people who ainâ€™t around anymore and that mark
sometimes gives you a smile cuz it reminds you of them. They were once
there. For some, maybe theyâ€™re in jail or maybe theyâ€™ve passed away, but
um, thatâ€™s why I think we do this. Itâ€™s more like leaving a trace.
6M$M: Are you planning to work on eventually doing a fully colored piece.
Prime: Nah, I donâ€™t think so. I donâ€™t think so. Iâ€™ve just been infatuated with
just doing throw-ups or tags. I donâ€™t feel I want to do anything else, like some
kind of illegal production. I just want to have fun with it, just pass by and
quickly put my mark up, get on some peopleâ€™s nerves, maybe yours or the
cities. (laughs) If itâ€™s for work or with permission or something like that, then
maybe, cuz thatâ€™s where Iâ€™m at at this age you know? I have to make a living
off this because itâ€™s the only thing Iâ€™m gonna do in life, art. Itâ€™s the only thing I
6M$M: You have any projects brewing?
Prime: Yeah, thereâ€™re a couple of murals coming up that I have to work with
the city. But itâ€™s different cuz when you do something for the community or
the city you have to think of everyone and thatâ€™s fine with me. Most of my life
I was also trying to do that. Trying to have people see our art and vie2w me
as an artist and maybe get recognized for doing something positive for our
community. Come across as some kind of team player in society and not so
much as an outlaw. To demonstrate I have something to offer to our kids.
They did their mark and we shouldnâ€™t forget them. -
6M$M: What do you think about sites like 50MM?
Prime: Um, you know what? I think theyâ€™re great. Youâ€™re able to see a lot of
artâ€”a lot art from everywhere around the city and the world. I guess people
send in their stuff. But uh, I just think overall graffiti has always had some
sort of tradition of always giving props to those who came before us. We
always tend to never forget them, or at last should not. There are people
only did it one time and now are laborers or meat cutters or something, but
they still did it once. They did their mark an we shouldnâ€™t forget them. Some
people just did a lot of tagging and some just bombing or whatever. They are
all still a part of us. They did something that is still a part of this whole culture
of graffiti or part of the dance. This whole internet thing has changed graff in
a good manner and itâ€™s shaped the last years of this new millennium. It
should be used wisely to honor those writers that came before.
6M$M:: A few years back the Belmont Tunnel closed. Tell me how you felt
about that and/or the last piece that you did there.
Prime: What I feel about the Belmont tunnel is that change has to happen,
right. It was an empty lot. It was a free independent kind of park that served
the community for a certain kind of people to play their games, have picnics
and stuff. It was more than anything a gathering spot for the children that
grew up in the neighborhood or even not but that felt they needed to go
somewhere where they can identify themselves with others or just have fun.
But for graffiti writers it was more of a gallery space, a place to leave their
mark in a spot that had been concentrated at one time or was the foundation
of what graffiti in LA is. Itâ€™s a shame that a lot of us arenâ€™t going to be able to
have the opportunity to paint there or make lasting relationships with other
artists or just uh, you know, other people, young and adults. Youâ€™d meet all
sorts of people there. Whether theyâ€™re filming a movie or just kinda of
interested in the spot. Maybe fifty or sixty years ago it had another life, it was
a train station and in the last twenty-five years it had another life. Thereâ€™s a
lot of LA history there. I was sad to see it go away. To me itâ€™s still there
though. I wish it wouldâ€™ve turned into some kind of cool landmark or museum
where it shows the trains and how it transported people and show itâ€™s route.
And how the art was developed and how a lot of people have passed and
painted there and have moved on to do other things or how some gained a
little stardom from there. It was a cool spot. We were able to paint there
freely without people or the police harassing you. It was like reserved for
graffiti artists. It was their spot, almost reserved for them to not damage
someoneâ€™s property or the city. I met a lot of kids who were just starting out
and I was a shy person but at I would try to encourage them to keep doing it
or keep with it for as much as they can and as much as theyâ€™d want to. It
was like an amusement park or something. It was a great place.
I kinda always tried to create different color schemes
and I wanted to try something different. -
Anyways, some of the last pieces that I did there were like the one I did with
Relik. I kinda liked that piece a lot. I worked on it hard even though I kinda
got into a little bit of trouble but I did it. It was a K2S/STN. And like I said, I
kinda always tried to create different color schemes and I wanted to try
something different. Over the last years Iâ€™ve been tattooing and have also
been influenced a lot by Japanese art and tattoos and so I had a lot of feeling
when I did those lettering and that traditional wood block Japanese
background, you know? It was sort of a collage of all of these kinda things
put together. I really had a lot fun doing that piece. I think, yeah, I think it
was the first time doing that and I hadnâ€™t painted in maybe a few years but it
was a kinda alright, right? It came out pretty good and everything. I mean as
far for the time that we did it you know. Then one day Axis-CBS came by the
store, here at routes and was like hey the Belmont and I was like yeah we
know Iâ€™ve been going with Wylie and it seems as though the developers
finally got a hold of it. We thought it was gonna go through but we were like
letâ€™s do something so, um, I asked him if he could spread a little word to some
people. Let those who like graffiti come by and pay a little tribute to it and put
all animosity aside and just come and paint peacefully. I think it came out
really great. Maybe 200 or 300 hundred people came. There was a lot of
people that day.
6M$M: What about the day the timeline was done?
Prime: Yeah, that timelineâ€¦actually I donâ€™t know how that came about. I think
Shandu came about that right? I know he put together a long photo I think he
developed at work. I do trip out, when I see that photo, that thereâ€™s all kinds
of color and all kinds of wild-style pieces and mine was the only one with
simple lettering (laughing)
6M$M: Thatâ€™s cool though. It stands out.
Prime: Yeah, but if you look at it from far away. You know all them were like
all crazy. I wish I would have done mine better, but if I wouldâ€™ve known it was
gonna come out like right there too, I would have done it more wild, you
6M$M: well, I think you were positioned there because of the time. It was
supposed to be like Shandu, the first person who rocked the tunnel and then
Rick, then you, then Scribe, then so on.
Prime: It was a good turn out of people that day you know? We had Shandu,
Scribe, Galo, Cab, Revok, Retnaâ€¦I wish that piece couldâ€™ve stayed up. And
the tunnel too. It really couldâ€™ve been there for another twenty-years and
then another group of people couldâ€™ve been there and hopefully we wouldâ€™ve
still been around to see it and share our time with them. I think itâ€™ll probably
happen. Itâ€™ll happen in a different place and time though.
6M$M: OK, we know youâ€™re a bike aficionado. One question, Red-Line or
Prime: awe, I have to go with Red-Line. I loved my Diamondback but I still
have to go with Red-Line.
6M$M: Do you have any last comments or shout outs or any last things you
want to say.
Prime: I would have say something clichÃ©ish, â€œjust be true to yourselfâ€. Be
true to your friends and your family. Keep your health. Keep your job. Be
true to your job and your family man. I also wanna say whatâ€™s up to Hash at
Routes in Little Tokyo. Make sure all come to the shop too.
â€œjust be true to yourselfâ€ - Prime-K2S
6M$M: Are we going to see more Prime this year and the next year?
Prime: Yeah, youâ€™re going to see Prime until the day I die.
6M$M: Alright Prime, thanks for the interview.
Prime: Alright, thanks too.