Your parents may not approve of his vulgar language or his outrageous antics, but rest assured, your friends probably think he is downright hilarious.
Timothy De La Ghetto, also known as Traphik, is the self-proclaimed Renaissance man: a rapper, filmmaker, blogger and in some cases, a love guru.
Inspired by Will Smith in his Fresh Prince of Bel Air days, De La Ghetto coined his YouTube persona from “Raphael De La Ghetto,” the poet that Smith portrays in one of the episodes. His rapper name was born from De La Ghetto’s “showstopper” mentality, who literally creates traffic online.
De La Ghetto has come a long way from his first video (which was originally posted on the fizzled out social networking site MySpace) of girls dancing to the song “Laffy Taffy.” An audience began to build and the video was eventually flagged, but it did not stop him from entertaining.
Nearly five years later, De La Ghetto is making parodies of High School Musical as a full-length feature and singing love songs to Disney star Selena Gomez. With a Q&A series entitled “Dear De La Ghetto,” combined with his random vlogs (video blogs) about pop culture and current issues, De La Ghetto is anything but boring.
“I always enjoyed making people laugh,” De La Ghetto said in an interview with the Inferno.
“It’s my reason for existence. Comedy is my passion.”
His YouTube popularity has enabled him to travel all over the country to do guest appearances and collaborate with other musical artists, whom he met through the Internet. It has even caused a riot. His recent meet-and-greet with fans this past summer in New York was shut down by police twice after De La Ghetto attempted to gather his followers in Bryant Park then in Central Park. He has even been stalked by a fan into the bathroom, but still encourages those who recognize him to say hi.
“My parents knew since I was little that I wanted to be famous,” De La Ghetto said. “Before, they would see me editing videos at 4 a.m. and tell me to go to sleep.”
But now that YouTube has become an outlet of great opportunities for De La Ghetto, he aspires to be so successful “to a point where people would light candles on the anniversary of my death.”
His Thai culture has made him especially popular with the Asian community. “When I see a group of Asians, I tell myself, “brace yourself.”
However, his creativity and uniqueness has garnered harsh critics as well. De La Ghetto admits that in the beginning, the negativity affected his feelings but he soon realized that many people wasted their time leaving senseless hate comments.
Regardless, De La Ghetto has become a YouTube sensation with over 28 million channel views. When asked how he generates so many hits, he responded: “People ask me how to get more views on YouTube, but the only thing I can tell ‘em is what camera to use. You either have it or you don’t.”
And Timothy De La Ghetto definitely has it.
Whether attempting to sing like Bruno Mars or creating videos about nosy Asian parents, give him a topic and he will turn it into entertainment.
His advice to those aspiring to follow in his footsteps is commitment and persistence. “If you’re in it, you gotta be in it.”