Meet Dynamite Dylan, the blue-haired YouTube gamer-turned-budding music star who's already garnered a significant amount of success in his mere 13 years.
The Los Angeles-based Internet personality has racked up over 270,000 subscribers on his channel, on which he primarily posts vlogs and gaming-related reviews, but he has a video from February that stands out among the rest -- a music video for "You," a bass-heavy, trap-pop banger with nearly 41 million views on YouTube, featuring none other than rap superstar Post Malone, whose second studio album beerbongs & bentleys currently tops the Billboard 200.
Although he's young enough to have a video on his channel called "IM FINALLY A TEENAGER," Dylan is already pleased with the accomplishments he's made so far. He spoke with Billboard about how his star-studded collaboration with Post came to be, how his dad has been able to snag him some high-profile connections and how viral success has affected his young life -- for example, having to schedule interviews like this one around tests for school.
How did you get your start both as a YouTuber and musician?
Originally it started off with toy reviews back in 2013, and eventually my dad was like, "OK, you’ve got an OK voice. Maybe you should go and take vocal lessons with Aunt Kelly." God bless Aunt Kelly... So that was how music started. But YouTube was just me wanting to share my mind on products and stuff. Which I still wish we could do again. I kinda wish we could do more reviews. Just kinda like tech stuff, I’m pretty tech-savvy.
Who has inspired you in the YouTube and music communities?
Well with music in the beginning, I was inspired by Ed Sheeran. My music back then was more acoustic and stuff. When it comes to YouTube, I guess I didn’t have that much inspiration. I just saw all these kids doing reviews. I was like, "Oh, I kinda wanna give my mind. I have a lot to say about stuff. I wanna give my opinion."
Since you're so young, how has viral success affected your life?
There’s a nice balance. I go to school, where the longest I’ll stay is like 3:30. Most normal days…Monday and every other day except for Fridays, I don’t go to school on Fridays normally… I normally get out of school at like 11:30. I get out of school, come here and start working on my other job. It’s a good balance.
It's interesting. We’ve made it work and it’s definitely not too stressful. It has gotten a little overwhelming at times, but it’s never gotten to the point where I’m like "I gotta take a break guys, this is kinda hurting my head."
So what’s the work day like for you?
Normally it’s sitting down at my desk for like a good hour or two -- and then my videographer and editor, Aaron, comes in and he’s like, "Hey we gotta shoot a couple things"... he’ll be like, "all right, I’ll give you 30 minutes to get prepped." He’ll give me the rundown, we’ll film it. Normally that’s about it.
How did the song and video with Post Malone come together?
Well, my dad is a good friend of Post’s. He’s really cool. That’s really how we brought him into the situation. My dad was like, "You’re a really good singer, but you’re also into games and stuff, like my son. You should meet him. I think you guys would get along." And I did, and I’m pretty sure the first time I met him we talked about Fallout for like, a good hour. It was a good first meeting. He’s great in person. He’s really laid-back and chill.
What exactly does your dad do?
My dad customizes and repairs cars in his shop. He does full body repairs, stuff like that. He works the normal nine-to-five hours. He runs West Coast Customs here in Burbank and I get my own office. It’s really cool. He has a social media team in the shop, so he has the social media aspect covered. But yeah, he knows how to get stuff out and get it popular.
Last October you recorded a song with a fellow YouTuber, Jake Paul, called "No Competition," which has almost 2 million streams on Spotify. How did you get involved with him, and how do you think it got so popular?
I think the way I get involved with most of the people I work with is because my dad normally knows them from his business. [My dad] will be like "hey, I have a son who’s into these things, too. I think you guys could help each other out." That’s how it came to be with Jake. I think the reason ["No Competition"] got so many streams is because it was Jake and it was something different. It was a 13-year-old with Jake. It’s like, "oh, that’s strange."
Who’s your dream collaboration that you’d love to make happen?
I don’t know. A lot of the YouTubers I watch have been very distant as of late right now. This is gonna sound kind of corny coming from any YouTuber lately, but PewDiePie for example. As of right now he’s in Japan. Doing a video with him or just meeting him would be really cool.
I feel like I’ve already done a lot of the things I’ve dreamed of. There’s definitely a lot of opportunities out there with YouTube, collab-wise. I’m not sure about music yet.
Do you have other projects coming up?
Oh yeah, tons of them. Can’t say too much, but me and Post are working on some magic in the studio. Some other stuff is I’m gonna be put into Team 10 Gaming… that’s a thing, I’m gonna be streaming with Chase and Anthony. It’s cool, because I’ve always liked the streaming life. It seems pretty easy to just sit down and play a game for six hours straight.
What do you see yourself doing in a year, or even five years from now? Do you think you’ll keep going to school?
I’ll probably still be going to school and managing all of this. I probably won’t change schools considering how easy they make it to fit with my work schedule. I feel like in five years I can’t really say what my social status will be like. It’s unpredictable, you can’t estimate it, because you never really know until you see it.
Read original Billboard article here