Vivian Fernandes, better known by his stage name Divine (often stylized as DIVINE), is an Indian rapper from Mumbai, India. He went to St. John the Evangelist High School Marol and studied at RD National College. He started to gain popularity after the release of his single Yeh Mera Bombay. He broke through with the release of his song Mere Gully Mein featuring fellow Mumbai rapper Naezy, who is now one of the most famous rappers in India along with Divine.
|Birth name||Vivian Fernandez|
|Born||2nd October 1990|
|Genres||Hip Hop, Rap|
|Labels||Gully Gang Entertainment, Sony Music India|
|Associated acts||Naezy, Nas, Byg Byrd, Nucleya, Deep Jandu, Sikander Kahlonn|
Divine started his career as an underground rapper in 2011 after discovering Hip Hop on a T-Shirt. A friend of his wore a shirt of 50 Cent's first album Get Rich Or Die Tryin' at school. The same friend would give him his first MP3 CD with hip hop music on it which inspired him to start rapping in English. However it was later suggested by his close friend, mentor and Toronto Rapper, Gangis Khan aka Camouflage, to switch to Hindi. He was part of the hip hop crew called Mumbai's Finest. He believes in authenticity when making Hip Hop music and mostly raps about his own life experiences, such as the life of the poor people in Mumbai and his upbringing with a single mother. He cites American rappers such as Nas, Eminem, Big L and Rakim as his main inspirations.
Rise to successEdit
Following the release of his song Yeh Mera Bombay, Divine obtained the attention of Sony Music India while performing at the Blue Frog Festival 2014 in Mumbai and shortly after signed a contract with them. The song later went on to win the Best Video of the Year award by Rolling Stone India in the same year. He released his breakout single Mere Gully Main featuring Naezy on 16 April 2015. The song went viral and many Bollywood celebrities shared it on social media. He collaborated with popular Indian DJ Nucleya on Nucleya's album Bass Rani, which helped him gain even more popularity. The song won Best EDM track of the Year in the GIMA Awards in 2015.
On 24 March 2016, his debut solo single Jungli Sher released and it ruled the charts because of its raw depiction of the life of the poor in Mumbai. He took the song to the Breakfast Show ahead of BBC Asian Network Live on 29 April 2016. He appeared on the BBC Asian Network in the Charlie Sloth Show and was the first Hindi-speaking rapper to freestyle on the show and also the first to rap in Hindi with the name-giving host in attendance. He was also featured on Brapp TV.
He again collaborated with Nucleya in another hit track, entitled Scene Kya Hai off Nucleya's album Raja Baja. He was featured on Daru Daru with Deep Jandu and Gangis Khan, his first commercially-oriented song, which came out on 10 January 2017. His next solo single Farak released on 16 February 2017 and topped the Indipop charts on iTunes India.
He appeared as a feature on a record called City Slums by Indian-American rapper/singer/songwriter Raja Kumari in May 2017. The song crossed 2 million views on YouTube within 24 hours of its release.
In 2018, Divine terminated his contract with Sony Music India. He released a remix to Lil Pump's Gucci Gang called Gully Gang independently on 18 January 2018. The song was perceived well by both critics and fans and helped him garner more attention. On 5 April 2018, he followed up with One Side produced by Byg Byrd. The video was produced by Red Bull Media House and came out on the rapper's own YouTube channel.
His next single Teesri Manzil earned him a copyright strike from Zee Music Company a few hours after its release and got deleted from his channel. It was eventually re-released on December 14, 2018 with some changes in the lyrics.
He released Junoon, the intro to his upcoming first full-length album on 10 November 2018. The album's name, Kohinoor, was announced on 13 February 2019 on Apple Music's Beats 1 radio show hosted by Ebro Darden.
Divine made his Bollywood debut for the film Mukkabaaz with the song Paintra. The track was another collaboration with Nucleya and came out on 1 December 2017. He collaborated with famous Indian music director and singer Amit Trivedi for the Irrfan Khan Starter film Blackmail on a song Badla which came out on 16 March 2018 via T-Series. He also contributed to the soundtrack for Sacred Games, an Indian Netflix Original Series. It features his song Jungli Sher as well Kaam 25 produced by Indo-Canadian producer Phenom which was made specifically for the series. Its music video was released on 14 June 2018 on both Divine's and Netflix's YouTube channels with the version on Netflix featuring English subtitles.
Divine most notably contributed to the soundtrack of the 2019 film Gully Boy by Zoya Akhtar, a film which is inspired by the lives of Naezy and himself, with Ranveer Singh and Alia Bhatt in the lead roles. Divine and Naezy both helped as consultants to get an authentic representation for the film Hip Hop. Their song Mere Gully Mein was remade with Ranveer Singh rapping Naezy's lyrics as part of the film. Furthermore Divine provided additional rap lyrics for Ranveer Singh's character and composed some of the songs for the original soundtrack. A character in the film, played by Siddhant Chaturvedi appears to be based on Divine.
Gully Gang EntertainmentEdit
In February 2019 he announced the founding of a new company, Gully Gang Entertainment, a record label to recruit and produce Hip Hop talent in the Mumbai area.
- Kohinoor (2019)
|2013||Voice Of The Bombay||Divine|
|2013||Yeh Mera Bombay||Divine||Rjv Ernesto, Sez On The Beat|
|2014||ABE||Divine, Sikandar Kahlon, B Meeks|
|2015||Mere Gully Main||Divine, Naezy||Sez On The Beat|
|2015||Jungle Raja||Divine, Nucleya||Nucleya|
|2015||Ryder Music||Divine, Sikandar Kahlon|
|2016||Jungli Sher||Divine||Sez On The Beat|
|2016||Mitra Da Swag||Divine, Sikandar Kahlon, Gangis Khan, Deep Jandu||Deep Jandu|
|2016||Farak Hai||Divine||Brapp TV|
|2016||Scene Kya Hai||Divine & Nucleya||Nucleya|
|2017||Daru Daru||Divine, Deep Jandu and Gangis khan||Deep Jandu|
|2017||City Slums||Raja Kumari, Divine||Beat Busta, Jules Wolfson|
|2017||Suede Gully||Mukti Mohan, Divine, Khasi Bloodz, Prabh Deep, Madurai Souljours||Sneha Khanwalkar|
|2018||Gully Gang (Gucci Gang Remix)||Divine||Cyrill Gabriel (Madbus Audio)|
|2018||One Side||Divine||Byg Byrd|
|2018||Roots||Divine, Raja Kumari||K-Major|
|2019||NY Se Mumbai||Nas, Divine, Naezy, Ranveer Singh||XD Pro, iLL Wayno|
|2019||Age 19||Jass Manak, Divine||Deep Jandu|
|2017||Rum||Pori Pathi Vizhum||Diwakar, Divine||Vijaya Raghavendra|
|Blackmail||Badla||Amit Trivedi, Divine||Amit Trivedi|
|2019||Gully Boy||Apna Time Aayega||Ranveer Singh, Divine||Dub Sharma, Divine|
|Sher Aya Sher||Chandrashekar Kunder|
|Mere Gully Mein||Ranveer Singh, Divine, Naezy||Sez On The Beat|
|Doori (as lyricist)||Ranveer Singh||Rishi Rich|
- "Will Mumbai rapper Divine become JB Nagar's Slumdog Millionaire?". Mid Day. Retrieved 20 March 2016.
- "This hip-hop artist, who grew up in the slums of Mumbai, is going to London to perform on a BBC Radio show". DNA India. Retrieved 8 April 2016.
- "Mumbai Rapper Divine's Biographical Song Jungli Sher's Video Shot Completely On iPhones Is Taking Over The Internet". IndiaTimes. Retrieved 8 April 2016.
- "Saif Ali Khan to star in Netflix series Sacred Games". Hindustan Times. 2017-07-14. Retrieved 2017-10-11.
- "Sacred Games First Look: An Intense Edge-Of-The-Seat Drama Awaits Viewers". BookMyShow. Retrieved 27 February 2018.
- "Rapper Divine Announces Gully Gang Entertainment to Record, Recruit and Produce Hip Hop Talent". News18. Retrieved 2019-02-09.