Pitbull Wants To Empower And Uplift The Latino Community By Leading By Example
Pitbull is the honorary patron Saint of Miami and they’re so proud of it. Pitbull brings Miami class, Cuban swag to the music world, and has raised us all since his first album dropped almost 15 years ago.
We know him by his trademark style of a shaved head, suit, and those sunglasses he wears everywhere. He might be Mr. Worldwide but there are things that so many people don’t know about him. Here are a few facts that might surprise you.
Pitbull’s real name is Armando Christian Perez.
He was born in Miami to Cuban immigrants, making him a first-generation Cuban-American. His parents separated when he was young and he was mostly raised by his mother.
He chose the name “Pitbull” because of the breed’s ferocious reputation.
Which makes many believe that he is actually a sweetie under that tough guy facade.
Pitbull spent his first music paycheck to buy his mom a car.
This was back in 1999, so the paycheck was about $1,500. He spent $1,200 to buy his mom a 1988 Mazda hatchback and put the $300 remaining in the bank. That’s the son all our mom’s raised us to be.
By the time he was 3 years old, he was reciting José Martí poetry at bars.
Pitbull’s father would take him to bars to recite the Cuban revolutionary philosopher’s poetry, he told Vanity Fair. That was the first time I saw how powerful words were,” Pitbull says. “We’re a culture that likes to talk a lot. We have a lot of sayings. Words mean a lot.”
He grew up wanting to become a basketball player.
He also went to Tae Kwon Do and jujitsu classes growing up, which he says gave him the discipline he needed in the music industry. His mom allegedly made him listen to Tony Robbins tracks in the car on the way to practice.
By the time he was 13, he was in love with music, thanks to hip-hop icons like N.W.A., Public Enemy and Jay Z.
He’s even been called “the Latino Jay Z” to his face during interviews and he doesn’t protest. When we first met Pitbull, he was wearing baggy jeans and had his hair in corn rows.
Some folks call him a “sellout” for his more polished look these days.
Have you ever seen this man in anything but a suit? When Vanity Fair points out the “sellout” label, he goes, “They’re right. I did sell out. I sell out arenas, I sell out stadiums. I sell out a bunch of things all around the world.” Dale.
Most of the suits that he wears are from his own line, After Dark.
Other rappers have been in awe of his commitment to the look. Usher has heaped respect on the guy for going out and performing a 3 hour show in an Armani suit, sweating like crazy.
His brand is very important to him.
He’s gone on the record telling Latina, “I’m not here to exploit our culture – I’m here to empower it, and I want to build a brand like Jennifer Lopez.”
His collab with Jennifer Lopez and Claudia Leitte served as the official theme of the 2014 FIFA World Cup.
“We Are One (Ole Ola)” became the tournament’s official song. Immediately after the World Cup, which took place in São Paulo, he was announced to receive a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
He’s not just here for fame and money. He’s giving back.
In 2010, Pitbull protested the anti-immigration laws in Arizona by cancelling his concert.
After SB 1070 passed, which requires local authorities to act as ICE by racially profiling people and asking for papers, Pitbull refused to bring any economic revenue to the state.
In a tweet, he says, “How is the country we enjoy and love bcuz of its human rights, freedom, opportunity and that has been built by immigrants, now start 2 deny them? It is contradicting 2 everything the USA stands 4.”
Pitbull has launched the S.L.A.M. charter schools, including in Little Havana, Miami, and Arizona.
The school is aimed towards kids who want to pursue a career in sports leadership and management. The school’s website quotes Pitbull as saying, “This is a dream come true. We can have endless number one records around the world, but it means nothing. To be able to perform in front of the world means nothing. It just gives us the avenue to be able to do these kind of things. This is priceless.”
How does he fund it all? Partnerships. Endless partnerships.
He’s endorsed by Kodak, Dr. Pepper, Voli Vodka, Budweiser, Walmart, Pepsi, Dodge, Fiat and more. He grew his spokesperson status with Norwegian Cruise lines by launching a Pitbull backed Norwegian party cruise last year.
He even has a majority equity stake in Voli Vodka, hence that 305 worldwide logo you see there:
His brand: party guy. He famously told Vanity Fair earlier this year that he’s “single, bilingual, and ready to mingle.” In the meantime, this guy is hustling.
Of course he has a television production company named “Honey I’m Home.”
Of course, this is named after the first ever Cuban-American actor Desi Arnaz’s line in I Love Lucy. He even has his own SiriusXM radio channel called Pitbull’s Globalization Radio.
Most recently, he’s expected to play the voice of ‘Ugly Dog’ in Uglydolls, releasing in 2019.
He also played the voice of Bufo in Epic (2013) and himself in Blood Money. So far, he hasn’t taken up acting in any way but he has played himself eight times on television and the big screen. #NeverForget his Dancing with the Stars era.
That’s not to say he hasn’t made enemies over the years…
Lindsay Lohan tried to sue him in 2011 for defamation after he used the line “I got it locked up like Lindsay Lohan” in the track “Give Me Everything.” The judge dismissed the suit, ruling that Pitbull’s entire track is protected as a work of art under the First Amendment. 😘
Public Enemy No. 1? President Trump.
Trump literally flew Pitbull in a helicopter to meet with him and ultimately, Pitbull decided that Trump doesn’t understand the true unity and power of the Latino community.
Caption: “Everybody calm down, Donald Trump isn’t Pitbull. It’s not as if he has a plane he can just load up with stuff for Puerto … oh, right.”
Immediately and quietly after Hurricane Maria passed, Pitbull flew cancer patients from Puerto Rico to Miami to continue getting chemo.
He also told CNN that he clearly sees what Trump is about. “His true colors are real simple. It’s about money, it’s about power, and when you’re raised that way, it goes to show you what your true priorities are.” Burn.
Meanwhile, Pitbull joined J.Lo and Marc Anthony’s relief initiative “Somos Una Voz” to aid Puerto Rico.
They raised over $6 million dollars to bring aid to Puerto Rico.
Ultimately, Mr. Worldwide doesn’t just want to conquer the world. He wants to empower Latinos to do the same.
We’re calling it an uprising in the best possible way. He told “The Real” that “money does buy happiness, you just got to give it away.” There you have it. Pitbull is one of the most charitable rappers around and it’s all thanks to those Tony Robbins tapes.