Hot 110


History of Writers





A writer could just burn with a Top-to-Bottom, as seen here with the famous FLINT 707 candy-cane piece, done in the early to mid 1970's.  This piece blew many writers away and even forced few into retirement.  The true originator of the Top-to-Bottom is hard to pin point; some say JAPAN 1 started it, and others say SUPER KOOL 223.  

    By 1973, spotting a Top-to-Bottom running became a normal event that most writers saw.  In the beginning, the first Top-to-Bottoms did not take up the entire subway car, but mainly half of its length.  HUNDO 1 took this idea to a new level by painting extra large thick letters, that took up the whole train.  Many Top-to-Bottoms consisted of bubble letter, straight letter, western letter and block letter styles.  Outside tags were becoming a thing of the past.  Numerous writers started doing larger, more elaborate letters just to keep two steps ahead of the rest.  To a Subway Outlaw, the Top-to-Bottom writings were about dominance.  It was how he/she could take over a line with the biggest and the best, as well as the most work that could hit the public (the next day).  TRACY 168 took this honor for being a total package, on what a subway writer should be.  He took over the lines with stylish Top-to-Bottoms, as well as with quick letter styles.  His most amazing production was writing a Top-to-Bottom on the out side of a train with CLIFF 159, and one inside of the train.  That truly blew many writers minds when they saw it! 

    Writers like SUPER STRUT who had a very long name, executed a Top-to-Bottom with their entire name.  Various artists like LEE, of the THE FABULOUS FIVE, took off where FLINT 707 left off.  As a result, he did some of the most memorable Top-to-Bottoms of his era.  BLADE, an all time king of the 2's and 5's, was considered by many to be one of the all time kings of the whole car Top-to-Bottoms.  SEEN UA pulled off dozens of Top-to-Bottoms in the early 1980's and took over, where BLADE left off.  A writer truly over looked, was MIN 1 a.k.a. NE, who pulled off the most colorful Top-to-Bottoms (along with KEL and the RTW-WOW crew), on the BMT's.  One of MIN's biggest products was a Top-to-Bottom wild style done for SHY 147 (R.I.P.), which ran on the RR train in the mid 1980's.  DONDI's work was always a pleasure to be seen .... as it had neat, clean, large and colorful letters, that looked like they belonged on a subway car.  The following are a few photos of our favorites:



(Top-to-bottoms done by: T- REX 131 and SAVAGE 1)

In early 1970's many masterpieces appeared on the subways, such as the Top-to-Bottom, by some of the earliest subway kings, SUPER KOOL 223, LIL HAWK 149, JAPAN 1 and HONDO 1.  Most of the earlier Top-to-Bottoms  were just very big signatures, which was later outlined with a darker color of paint.  Here are some of our favorites.  Please let us know your opinions by e-mailing us @...


SH 149 (aka STAY HIGH 149)

Photo from the collection of the late Jack Swart. He was the first person to photograph Subway writing in it earliest stag.  May he Rest in Piece.




LIL H (aka LIL HAWK 149)  and  S.CRUZ (aka SWEET CRUZ)

Photo also from the original collection of Jack Stewart. Jack spent many hours photographing many of the earliest art work on the Subways. For more information Pick up Graffiti Kings



JK 183 (aka JOKER 183)

The first Whole-Car, Top-To-Bottom, by HONDO 1.

- in the early 1970's, most Top-to-Bottoms were done in the corners of a subway car,  or just done on half a subway car.  HONDO 1 changed all that by painting the whole train with large, thick letters, that had to be the first ever of its kind.


PIT 163 (aka HONDO 1)

GIN 170





Original member of the Bronx writing group,THE CRAZY 5.



(Early Brooklyn Writers)


From the writing group, THE EBONY DUKES.




FUZZ ONE - There have been many rumors on how the group TFP (THE FANTASTIC PARTNERS) originated .  The name was thought up by KINDO 1 and I, who were the first members, to be put in the group.  I  put together the original line up of writers .... SOLID 1, HASH 161, OG 2, BOT 707 and FRED.


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