Drake truly belongs to the world. His music transcends age, race, nationality, and socioeconomic status. Nowhere is that clearer than in the swift rise of unlikely Vine star Bette Reynolds, a 68-year-old Scottish woman who has garnered over 18 million loops with her brief, deadpan, spoken-word covers of Drizzy’s best-known hits. In a typical example of her work, Reynolds stands in the doorway of her home and recites the first two lines of “Started From The Bottom” while a bagpipe rendition of “Scotland The Brave” plays softly in the background. “Started from the bottom now we’re here,” Reynolds intones, her stoic expression betraying nothing. “Started from the bottom now my whole team here.”
It’s the weird kind of incongruity that the internet loves. Who is this woman, and why is she reading Drake lyrics on Vine? What mysterious forces in the universe aligned to make this series possible? Mashable writer Sophie Hirsh decided to get the story direct from the source. The whole project, Reynolds reveals, was her son’s idea; he goes by the handle Brittlestar on Vine. “He thought the idea of his Scottish mum reciting rap lyrics would be funny,” Reynolds tells Hirsh. As her millions of views attest, her son’s prognosis was correct. Other songs covered by Brittlestar’s mum include “One Dance,” “Jumpman,” and the obligatory “Hotline Bling.” “Jumpman” takes on an air of Scottish menace in Reynolds’ rendition. Half in shadow and with a haunted expression on her face, she stares out a window as she intones, “Them boys are up to something.”
Do not get the idea, please, that Reynolds is a one-trick pony. As Hirsh points out, her account includes covers of other songs, too, including Kanye West’s “I Miss The Old Kanye” and Desiigner’s “Panda.” When Reynolds recites the lyrics of the former while standing in a supermarket aisle, she sounds genuinely ticked off. It becomes less of a song and more of a lecture from a mother who’s had it up to here with the nonsense.