The Untold Truth Of Bad Bunny

Puerto Rican singer and songwriter Bad Bunny, born Benito Antonio Martínez Ocasio, first burst on the scene as an independent artist who bagged groceries during the day. As reported by Vulture, the future superstar got his start singing in a church choir, but later turned himself into an overnight sensation after producing his own music and submitting it to the music-sharing website, SoundCloud.

Quite the impressive feat for a boy born to blue-collar, working-class parents in Puerto Rico. But instead of forgetting his roots once he became famous, he chose to capitalize on them. During a December 2020 interview with The Guardian, Bad Bunny's manager, Noah Assad, explained that his songs are about much more than just "cars and girls." "It's about everything. How you get out of sadness, and how there's a light at the end of the tunnel," Assad detailed.

But what else is there to know about the talented lyricist? Here is the untold truth of Bad Bunny. 

Bad Bunny doesn't conform to gender norms

Bad Bunny is no shrinking violet when it comes to gender norms. Instead, he proudly champions the case for gender fluidity while frequently performing in drag. As reported by GQ in 2019, many criticize Bad Bunny for advocating for what they refer to as "sexual deviance," but just as many have praised him for his willingness to be authentic. "There's people that appreciate what I do; there's people that criticize it," Bad Bunny acknowledged in the interview.

But one particular instance of condemning traditional gender norms actually resulted in him temporarily deleting his Twitter account in 2018. As reported by Refinery29, the Puerto Rican rapper was enraged after being refused service at a nail salon in Spain, simply because he was a man. He deleted his Twitter account after receiving a slew of negative comments around his gender expression, however, he has since returned to Twitter and is still not letting the haters win.

Opening up again to GQ for their June 2022 cover story, Bad Bunny explained that someone's personal style isn't confined to the gender binary. "Everybody has to feel comfortable with what they are, and how they feel," the singer told the magazine. "Like, what defines a man, what defines being masculine, what defines being feminine? I really can't give clothes gender. To me, a dress is a dress. If I wear a dress, would it stop being a woman's dress? ... No. It's a dress, and that's it."

He's a political activist

As it turns out, Bad Bunny isn't just a performer. He's also somewhat of a political activist and regularly speaks out about issues near and dear to his heart. As reported by GQ, the rapper made waves when he criticized former President Donald Trump's response to Hurricane Maria that ravaged Dominica, St. Croix, and Puerto Rico in September 2017. "More than 3,000 people died and Trump's still in denial," he said while performing on "The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon."

Bad Bunny has also been heavily invested in the Black Lives Matter movement, particularly after the 2020 police-involved murder of George Floyd. Despite giving up social media in the midst of the pandemic and not even having a phone on him, he spoke with Time from Puerto Rico on the importance of standing up. The singer explained that there are a myriad of ways to get involved in bettering the world.

"At the moment, we are working on where to contribute seriously, economically and humanely, using the resources we have to support and in some way be part of the #BlackLivesMatter movement," he told the magazine. He added that he would not be just posting a message of solidarity like other celebrities, but rather fighting back in more lasting ways.

The singer contracted COVID-19

Unfortunately, it hasn't been all rainbows and sunshine for Bad Bunny. In November 2020, the famous singer and songwriter contracted COVID-19. As reported by Vulture, Bad Bunny was slated to perform at the American Music Awards, but at the last minute, pulled out. He did, however, still manage to present an award for favorite Latin female artist for the show, albeit remotely. Later it was confirmed to AP News by one of his representatives that the star tested positive for COVID-19, but wasn't experiencing "any major symptoms."

Luckily, the pandemic hasn't been all bad for Bad Bunny. In fact, the performer tapped into his creativity early on and found ways to pivot during quarantine. In an effort to continue doing shows, he implemented performing on moving vehicles during virtual concerts. He then went on to release an entirely new album that he created during the 2020 quarantine titled "El Último Tour Del Mundo" ("The Last Tour of the World"). "For a moment, it seemed like it was the end of the world," Bad Bunny confessed to Apple Music about the COVID-19 pandemic.

It seems Bad Bunny opted to turn lemons into lemonade. "It's as if I spent my final tour of 2032 advancing the word from 2020," he explained about his vision for the album. This is probably what our teachers meant when they advised us to use our time wisely...

He's been in a serious relationship since 2017

How serious Bad Bunny's relationship truly is remains up for debate. According to Cosmopolitan, the singer and his partner, Gabriela Berlingeri, have been together since 2017, though folks aren't sure if they're engaged, married, or just dating. Regardless of their label, these two have been together for years and even adopted a puppy together in February 2022. Berlingeri and Bad Bunny are often seen together at award shows and such, though generally, their relationship is pretty private.

The wedding rumors probably stem from the singer's music video for his song "Titï Me Preguntó" in which he is seen marrying Berlingeri. He even joked about their relationship status to GQ, teasing that he and Berlingeri could be married, but then assured the publication that they weren't.

Still, Bad Bunny spent much of the COVID-19 lockdown with Berlingeri, hanging out and watching "Toy Story," he told Rolling Stone. Berlingeri, a jewelry designer, even did the photographs for the Rolling Stone story featuring Bad Bunny.

There have been relationship rumors

In 2020, there were rumors that Gabriela Berlingeri cheated on Bad Bunny early on in their relationship, after Puerto Rican trap artist, El Dominio, claimed it to be true via an Instagram live. Cosmopolitan reported that fans were freaking out on social media after the claim was made, but also mentioned that Bad Bunny and El Dominio have a deeply rooted rivalry. Neither the singer nor Berlingeri has ever spoken out about the claim.

By May 2022, a new set of relationship rumors emerged, namely that Berlingeri and Bad Bunny were in an open relationship. HITC reported that this particular rumor stemmed from one TikTok user who claimed to know that the singer and his girlfriend have an open relationship. Bitsofnits created a series of videos breaking down why she believes a girl named Vicky is Bad Bunny's sidepiece. In the videos, the TikToker explains that Vicky is usually in the same cities as the singer, and she has been seen wearing Bad Bunny's stuff.

Bitsofnits isn't the only TikTok sleuth on the case, either. Another creator, Fernanda Larios (Ferthewitch), breaks down similar "evidence" of Bad Bunny having another girlfriend. Even so, the open relationship allegations have not been addressed or widely explored. Things like this are probably why Bad Bunny keeps his love life private.

He's gotten into acting

Crossing over from music into acting is a move that many other celebrities have made over the years, though they don't often go in full force from the jump. Then again, Bad Bunny is not like everyone else.

The musician's acting premiere came when he was cast in the role of Arturo "Kitty" Paez in the final season of Netflix's "Narcos: Mexico." Seemingly unwilling to rest on his success, Bad Bunny quickly jumped from the small screen to the movies, with his big-screen debut coming not even a year after his initial acting debut. For his first film role, Bad Bunny acted alongside Brad Pitt in "Bullet Train."

With his massive success already, some might think that Bad Bunny's transition from music to acting would be easy for the performer. However, the singer shared with GQ that he actually felt immense pressure to do well. "Maybe, for some people, it's different in that the higher they go, the less pressure they feel, because maybe they're confident that everything they do will be a success," he told the outlet. "But I'm the opposite — the more I acquire an audience, the more I go up, the more pressure I feel to keep going. Sometimes, I can't sleep thinking about that. I go days without sleeping."

Bad Bunny won the WWE 24/7 Championship belt

One little-known fact about Bad Bunny is his penchant for World Wrestling Entertainment, lest we forget famous wrestler Ric Flair's cameo in the star's music video for his hit song, "Chambea," per Vulture.

As reported by Rolling Stone, the rapper has appeared several times at various WWE events during his career, including a show that left him holding the highly coveted WWE 24/7 Championship belt. The story goes that during what was supposed to be a routine appearance for Bad Bunny, including a backstage interview with Puerto Rican pro wrestler Damian Priest, ended with Priest cajoling Bad Bunny to pin Japanese WWE star Akira Tozawa in an effort to take home the prize. And that he did!

But some argue that Bad Bunny's love of wrestling goes much further than just a carefully curated publicity stunt. As reported by NBC News, one wrestling fan said that Bad Bunny's love for the sport is indicative of wrestling's increasing Latinx fanbase. "Seeing Bad Bunny was priceless," the fan gushed. "We are a part of the wrestling world and more people are learning about it."

The singer will play a Marvel supervillain

Having a relatively new acting career isn't stopping Bad Bunny from taking on big roles right away — and making history in the process. The performer's forthcoming role as El Muerto in Marvel's film of the same name makes him the first Latinx superhero with their own Marvel film. According to Deadline, the film is set to come out on January 12, 2024. And Bad Bunny was reportedly not shy about his excitement to take on the role.

Deadline reported that the performer told Sony Pictures Motion Picture Group president Sanford Panitch that working on "Bullet Train" got him more excited to take on a Marvel character. "David (Leitch) is awesome," Bad Bunny told Panitch, per Deadline. "I loved working with him on my first film and now with this opportunity to bring El Muerto to life. It's amazing, it's incredible. I love wrestling. I grew up watching wrestling and I'm a wrestler. I'm a former champion so this is why I love this character. I think it's the perfect role to me and it will be epic."

El Muerto is a lesser-known Marvel character out of the "Spider-Man" universe. According to Marvel, El Muerto comes from a long line of super-powered wrestlers who must prove themselves to the oppressive El Dorado. Details of the plot of the new film have not yet been released as of this writing.

How Bad Bunny got his stage name

A name like Bad Bunny has to have a backstory, most likely an adorable one, right? It actually does!

The singer told E! News that the origins of his stage name come from when he was a child. When he was little, he assumed a bunny persona for an Easter celebration. "Bad Bunny, that name comes from a picture when I was a kid," the singer told E! News while showing the reporter a photo of him in a bunny costume. "I think that I was six years old. I was so mad. That was Easter day in the school and the teacher picked me to dress up."

The U.S. Sun reported that the name started out as a response to that childhood bunny photo circulating online. Once the artist created a Twitter handle with the photo and the moniker "Bad Bunny," it became his new identity. Given his unique perspectives on life and artistry, it is only fair that his name reflects that same uniqueness. Rock on, Bad Bunny!

Here's what his album YHLQMDLG means

Bad Bunny's "YHLQMDLG" album is one heck of an acronym. But it essentially translates to "Yo hago lo que me da la gana," which means "I do whatever I want" in Spanish. The singer told E! News that the name reflects how he sees things right now. "It's how I feel right now in my life, in my music, that I can do whatever I want," he explained. "You can do whatever you want."

Bad Bunny told NPR that the album brought back old-school reggaeton music. The acronym name is perfect for a sound — and a musician — who is pushing back against the status quo in the industry. He told NPR that the music is a blend of going back to the past of the genre while simultaneously moving forward.

Doing what he wants gave Bad Bunny not just a great album, but one that set a bunch of records. According to Billboard, "YHLQMDLG" became the highest-charting all-Spanish-language album ever on the all-genre charts, number one on both the Top Latin Albums and Latin Rhythm Albums charts, the most career entries on the Hot Latin Songs chart (with all 20 tracks on the list), getting 11 songs on the Billboard Hot 100 list, and becoming Spotify's most-streamed album worldwide in 2020. Billboard mentioned that, in 2020, Bad Bunny was also the most-streamed artist of the year, with over 8.3 million streams worldwide.

Does he have beef with Anuel AA?

There is nothing new about beef between musicians. In December 2019, Remezcla reported that it appeared there was a feud coming up between Bad Bunny and Anuel AA. The outlet reported that the beginnings of the feud appeared on AA's Instagram, where he posted a video basically declaring himself the king of trap. Followers took this video as shade on Bad Bunny, though neither side ever commented on it. AA's had beef before, though the case between him and Bad Bunny in 2019 seems more like a publicity stunt to promote their forthcoming collaboration than an actual feud.

However, even if that beef wasn't real, AA did face backlash in 2020 after dissing Bad Bunny in a big way. E! News reported that, in reference to Bad Bunny's drag makeover in his music video for "Yo Perreo Sola" ("I Twerk Alone), AA posted a homophobic Instagram Story. In that Story, AA reportedly wrote "El conejo malo jugando a los transformers" or "The Bad Bunny playing transformers," followed by puking emojis, according to E! News.

After that post got out, a hashtag started over on Twitter that pushed back against AA. The hashtag #Anuelisoverparty started catching on, with Twitter users supporting Bad Bunny and telling AA (as well as other artists who have made similar homophobic sentiments before) to back off.

Bad Bunny knew what he wanted at 5 years old

Bad Bunny has always loved music. In an interview with GQ, the singer revealed that he used to listen to a variety of music as a child, influenced by what his parents listened to. "A lot of salsa. And my mom would listen to ballads, merengue, and Top 40 radio," he explained to the publication. 

He also shared that his parents would use his love of music to help him get out of bed in the morning. Although Pitchfork detailed that Bad Bunny was a good student when he was younger, by the time he started making music in high school, education wasn't his top priority. As he shared with GQ, Bad Bunny revealed that his parents wouldn't let him listen to his favorite artist, Tego Calderón, if he didn't get up and get ready for school.

He also shared with Fader that he knew he wanted to be a singer when he was 5 years old. In an attempt to cultivate his passion for music, Bad Bunny's mom encouraged him to use his voice in church. "My mom is very religious — Catholic — and from a young age they brought me to the church," he explained. "I've always liked to sing, [so] people in the church invited me to be part of the children's choir." Bad Bunny added that he quit the children's choir at 13 and then started taking more of an interest in reggaeton.