Bad Bunny on His New Album Un Verano Sin Ti and Playing the Marvel Hero El Muerto

Bad Bunny is in a good place. Fresh off a long-delayed 25-city tour for his third solo album, the most streamed artist of 2021 on Spotify is comfortably ensconced in a waterfront house in North Miami, just across Biscayne Bay from flashier Miami Beach, finishing his latest record. Built out of shipping containers arranged around a patio that looks onto a pool and a dock, this temporary residence is teeming with friends who are also collaborators—his creative director, his photographer, his producer, his jack-of-all-trades. The sliding glass doors are open, but the breeze barely cuts through the humidity and the heat. A chef is at work in the open kitchen, filling the room with the aroma of pork and onions, and a spring break vibe hangs in the air. Someone has set a beautiful table for a crowd.

Bad Bunny covers the June/July 2022 issue of GQ. To get a copy, subscribe to GQ.Hoodie, $2,250, by Prada. Earrings, nose ring, and necklace (bottom), his own. Necklace (top), $950, by Swarovski.

The mood is so mellow that you could almost forget that the person who shows up a few minutes after everyone else, fresh from the gym, is a global phenomenon whose genre-bending songs, convention-flouting lyrics, and gender-fluid looks have, over the past six years, changed the face of pop music. An urbano Latin trap singer who has defied every expectation about what a rapper and trap artist should look like, and what a reggaeton singer should sing about—upsetting some people but inspiring many more.

“I think he’s the biggest star in the whole world right now,” Diplo, who appeared on Bad Bunny’s 2018 debut album and will join him on his stadium tour this summer, telling me over the phone. “Bigger than any English-speaking star, bigger than, of course, the biggest Latin star. He’s the most massive, most progressive, most important pop star in the world.” Bad Bunny’s frequent collaborator J Balvin concurs. “He’s a creative genius,” he says, someone who “takes us out of the stereotypes and shows the real, new way that we see the world as Latinos.”

Bad Bunny, whose real name is Benito Antonio Martínez Ocasio, is here with his girlfriend, 28-year-old jewelry designer Gabriela Berlingeri, and their three-month-old Beagle puppy, Sansa. Dressed in a pair of royal blue Bravest Studios LA shorts, neon green slides, a black Balenciaga T-shirt with bebe bedazzled across the chest in rhinestones, and a tan bucket hat with the string hanging loose around his chin, Benito, also 28, is carrying a stack of coffee table books on interior design, which he neatly arranges on a side table next to the sofa . There’s a gold ring in his septum, a necklace of small diamond hearts around his neck, small gold hoops with diamond charms in both of his ears. His nails, a modest length, are painted ballerina pink.

As Benito talks, his demeanor shifts from shy and introverted to playful and goofy to voluble and defiant. Sometimes, he gets sentimental. He turns to Berlingeri at one point and murmurs, “You look so pretty right now.” And she laughs and says, “Oh, yeah, I look really pretty.”

Berlingeri, who has come from the gym too, is wearing an oversized “Puerto Rico” T-shirt and denim shorts, her hair wet and no makeup. She sits close to him on the couch, keeping a watchful eye on the puppy, who is being showered with gifts, including a stuffed bunny. Meeting Sansa was a highlight of the tour, Benito tells me. Berlingeri brought her to meet him during his show at the Arena in Los Angeles. He was about to go back onstage after a five-minute break when he found out they had arrived, and he made a dash for the dressing rooms. “I ran because of her,” he tells me in Spanish, pointing to Sansa. “It wasn’t because of Gabriela.” Then he laughs. “That’s a lie, it was for both,” he says with a grin.

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