Spend enough time on Vine, and you'll notice there are a handful of stars who are raking in a ton of money due to the virality of their six-second clips. There are the stars who lip sync their way to one million followers, the Abercrombie & Fitch-next generation kids whose "comedy" clips get them sponsorships and lucrative opportunities—and then there are individuals like Bryan Silva.
Silva is responsible for the recent trending topics #VineLikeBryanSilva and #Gratata. People imitate his indescribable gun sounds and freestyles. He's even inspired behavior like this:
So, we began searching for Bryan Silva. He has multiple email addresses, multiple Twitter accounts, a few YouTube pages, and a few websites. During the search, we discovered that he's not only going viral from his Vines—a video of him flexing and talking shit to his haters made its way to WorldStarHipHop, where it notched over a million views. This viral Internet content led to the discovery of his work in porn, bodybuilding, and music. And he couldn't be happier.
Seeing as how there are many obvious problems with Silva's Vines—his use of the n-word, his conspicuous lean consumption—we reached out to speak with him in order to shed light on Vine's most current star.
Let's start with where you're from and where you live now.
I’m from Charlottesville, Virginia. I’m still in Virginia now. I was born in Florida and when I was two I moved to Virginia and lived there until about 12. Then I moved back to Florida to live with my dad. I believe I was 14 when I ended up moving back to Virginia. A couple months later I got locked up for three years.
It was mainly for breaking and entering, but also for hitting the school principal.
You hit the school principal?
He just pissed me off and they tried to say that I threw a chair at him and stuff. It was crazy.
How old are you now?
Did you graduate high school?
Nah. I went to the university of the streets. I ended up having to get my GED when I was locked up. I actually got that when I was 16. I mainly found my fun with the freaks and the niggas.
And where do you work now?
I been had a job. I’m a promoter. I promote all my own stuff and trap music.
I’ve seen you rapping, I’ve seen the bodybuilding, I heard a rumor you were doing porn.
Yeah, I have a lot of careers, you could say. A king of all trades.
What came first—the rapping, the body building, the porn?
It was the bodybuilding, the fitness career, then it was the porn, and then it was my clothing line, and then it was rapping. It’s not really rapping, because I’m not really rapping, I’m mainly just freestyling.
Did the bodybuilding start when you were in jail?
Yeah. It started when I was locked up, but then it mainly started to carry on when I was released. When I was 19 I moved out to California—La Quinta. So out there, that’s how I got more into the industry.
Into porn or into bodybuilding?
How'd you get into porn?
Just how everyone looked at me. Just me knowing that I’m going to be great and I’m going to succeed in life because when you stand out in a crowd, you know you’re going places. Always alpha male, always got to stand out.
You have a ton of different Twitter and Instagram accounts, too.
Yeah, because you’ve got to have one for different careers. You can’t have all of them built into one because then people won’t follow you for posting something they cannot relate with. Everyone following those Twitters relates with what I’m promoting on there.
Do you feel like you’re living different lives?
Nah, not at all. I live all one life. The life of Bryan Silva, Bryan Silva the great.
Let's talk about the viral Vine videos.
I think it was mainly from all my hard work from the past years, from all the promoting. My name, Bryan Silva, when you say it it’s one of those names that literally gets stuck inside your head to where you don’t forget it. On top of that, my body, my face, everything I do, my personality, how I put myself out there, all that. It all stands out to everyone else. What got me on WorldStar was my one flexing video.
And now #Gratata is a trending topic, and you've got a ton of haters.
Haters make you famous. You talking about the one, “The lame fufu shit ain’t with it/I took some shots at your fitted/Gratata! Swag, bitch.” [Laughs.]
So that’s yours. Gratata, with a g?
Nah, it’s gratata! You’ve got to flip your tongue the same time you’re saying the “g” and the “t" so it’s like a gun sound. Gratata!
A lot of people do the #VineLikeBryanSilva now, they imitate you.
Honestly, it was mainly the, “All I do is flex, fuck other nigga’s bitches and get respect.” Something told me, “Should I wait?” Because you have a thing on your Vine where you can save it for later, and I was like, “Hmm. I don’t really know if I want to post this because I don’t know if people will be able to relate with this here on this social media network." Then I thought to myself, “Fuck it. I don’t even care.”
The next day I woke up and someone was like, “You should go check your Vine,” and I did and had over like 500 re-Vines and a couple hundred comments already. I was like, “Oh shit!” Then all of a sudden I was like, “Fuck it. I’ma feed these niggas. I’ma feed the block.” [Laughs.]
What's the tattoo on your chest? People draw it on when they imitate you.
It’s praying hands with wings coming off the praying hands, and then right above the hands, it’s holding up a crown that has a GD—a Gangster’s Disciple—pitchfork in the middle. I’m a Disciple. My set is based when you’re locked up. That’s how I got down when I was locked up. That’s the only way you can get down with the set that I’m a part of. It's a branch off of GD.
A lot of your Vines show you pouring up lean, too. What are you going to do now that Actavis is discontinued?
The main one I was pouring up was codeine—not codeine, promethazine. What I would do mainly is pour up the promethazine, take a Percocet or Oxycontin, break it in half, pop that. It helps me better than having the codeine inside the promethazine.
Are you worried that you're going to gain weight, since you're a bodybuilder? Or, worse, die?
If you see some of my videos, I was gaining weight when I was sipping lean. Lean, what it does to you, what I learned with the codeine kind, it literally slows your body down and then puts your body into where the pain killers start to kick in, and then from the codeine it just starts to, like, you start to pass out. But if you sip just the promethazine and pop half an Oxycontin or half a Percocet, then you’ll be a lot better because it’s getting into your bloodstream as soon as possible.
Right. Who's your favorite rapper?
I’m rocking with Soulja and my nigga Sosa.
Have you spoken to Soulja before?
I haven’t really reached out Soulja, but he’s reached out to me, giving me a shout out back in 2012. You can actually check out my Twitter and see it. Real recognize real. [He's my favorite but] only when he speaks to the trap shit though. Speak to the streets. I don’t fuck with that female bullshit. When he wants to sometimes rap for the bitches. Naw, man, fuck the bitches. The bitches come with the respect and the money.
Soulja sometimes raps about women. But I take it you’re not a romantic?
I am, but not like that. I’m a hood nigga. I’m street.
You can be street and romantic at the same time.
Nah, you got to stick to one thing because you got to think about it, all that romantic bullshit is played out. You’ve already got songs for all that shit. I’m a promoter. I promote trap music.
The issue with your Vines is that you're white and you're using the n-word.
Yeah, I’ve earned my right to say that.
From being on the block since I was eight years old. I’ve always had my fun in the streets. While these niggas were hating on the porch, I was having my fun in the streets.
You don't think it's inappropriate?
I think it’s how I say it and all the real niggas rock with me.
Has anyone approached you or confronted you about your use of the word?
No. Never. Ever since I got the respect to say it no one say anything to to me. I’ve been saying that word since I was 11.
My last question: what’s next?
The takeover. Nah. I’m going to take over everything. As my real niggas start to hear my tracks and read into my interests. Real recognize real, it’s real simple.