About Bad Bunny
In early 2020, Bad Bunny gave an interview to Apple Music about his then-new album YHLQMDLG. His debut, X 100PRE, had helped bring Latin trap to a global audience without diluting its regional spirit—no small feat. Did he feel like he had to do even better the second time out? “I’ll be honest with you,” he said. “No.” No? “On the contrary, I wanted it to be different.” Like his collaborator J Balvin, El Conejo Malo has become a symbol of Latinx culture’s migration into the global mainstream, reshaping the look, sound, and feel of modern pop just by following his own idiosyncratic muse. YHLQMDLG: Yo hago lo que me da la gana—I do whatever I want.
As a kid growing up Vega Baja, Puerto Rico, in the mid-'90s (he was born Benito Martínez Ocasio in 1994), Bunny fell in love with a broad spectrum of Latin music—reggaetón, merengue, salsa—before discovering American hip-hop. His best tracks don't just blend tradition and futurism, Latin and global, but stake out new thematic territory for male Latinx artists, including personal vulnerability (“Vete”) and sexual violence against women (“Yo Perreo Sola,” “Bellacoso”), making him both a role model and an ally for LGBTQ communities and socially progressive values. Reflecting on his performance at the Super Bowl in 2020, the Apple Music Up Next artist said he almost hadn’t processed the magnitude of what was happening until he was in rehearsals. Then, the lights went up and it clicked. “There it was,” he says. “Like, we’re here. I can’t believe it. Straight to the top.”
HOMETOWNSan Juan, Puerto Rico
BORNMarch 10, 1994