My full name is Aiden Hawthorne Bentley (formally Travis Ryan Bentley), but musically I just got by Aiden Hawthorne. I was born on October 12,1993 - which of course makes me 18 years old as of right now. I was born in Hyden, Kentucky, in which I still live in the same county as Hyden. I've lived here all my life, but of course I would love to move away from here as quick as possible. As you can probably guess, south-eastern Kentucky isn't the best place for an openly gay musician to live their dreams. But I'm getting ahead of myself, let me back up a bit.
I was born in Mary Breckinridge Hospital to the parents Wendlyn (Wendy) and Thomas (Tommy) Bentley. I don't remember anything from then until my first day of school, of course. So not much to tell there. However, I did experience a horrible event at the age of 4, but at the moment, I do not wish to publicly speak about it. I began school as soon as I turned 5, and from that moment on I knew I was different from every other boy I attended school with.
School for me was very hard, because at such a young age, I didn't understand that my interests were not common with "regular" boys. So I didn't understand why other's made fun of me or picked on me. To elaborate further, my interets included playing dress up as a girl or woman, playing with dolls instead of toy trucks and loving the color pink instead of blue (since apparently the color blue is the symble for being a guy, I guess). Every time my classmates and myself played pretend, I was always the mom. I remember crying because this girl in my class wouldn't let me wear a dress that they gave us for pretend (lame, I know haha). But of course, all of this happened while I was 5. So, keep in mind I still had the mindset of a 5 year old. Again, I didn't understand why I was considered different but always knew I was.
Then after preschool, it got worse for me. 1st grade was the first time I ever remember someone calling me a f***** simply because of my actions and my interests. I also remember my best friend Kendra getting a boyfriend, and thinking "I'm never going to get a boyfriend". I still never understood that in society, thinking that way was bad - I just thought I was unique.
2nd through 5th grade was pretty much the same. I was called a f***** every now and then, and picked on a few times. But it wasn't THAT horrible for me then. I still had a few guy friends, but most of my friends consisted of girls, since their who I felt the most comfortable with being myslef around. Then 6th grade started, and that's when the guys started getting a lot worse. I didn't have any guy friends until the end of the school year, and every guy in my class picked on me just for acting feminine. I was always rediculed for hanging out with girls instead of guys as well, but I never came out with being openly gay yet. I've always known I liked guys, but never knew I was "gay" until about the 4th grade - and I really didn't look forward to coming out about it either. So, I pretended to be straight of course. Having girlfriends and claiming that I hang out with girls so I can try to be with them. It made a difference, but it did not work once I got to middle school.
I have to say, middle school was probably the worst for me, and Freshman year. 7th grade, I came out as bisexual to my best friend (I thought being bi would help my friends take it better, then down the road I'd just finally come out as fully gay), and she did not take it well. She was a very big Christian, and did not like it at all. She tried to tolerate it since we were best friends, but she just couldn't. Everything I said or did rubbed her the wrong way, and she finally had enough of it. She went around and told everyone I was gay, and showed them a letter I wrote her about it. That event changed my life forever. I remember being asked at the beginning of my 7th grade year to play football, even had a teacher beg me to at one point. But after that, none of the "sports" guys would talk to me. In fact, no guys would talk to me. I was made fun of so much from that point on, but luckily did have friends who loved me for who I am. So it was tolerable, but in no way easy. For the rest of the year, I tried doing everything else to get people to like me, but nothing would work. No one could look over the gay thing
So, 8th grade started and I decided to do everything I could to rebell against everyone. If no one would like me when I was trying to do the things they wanted, I would give them a reason not to like me - and it worked too. I did lose quite a few friends with my changes, which honestly didn't phase me - I was used to it at this point. However, I gained friends that stuck with me no matter what, and I wouldn't change that for anything. This was the year I started doing music on MySpace and YouTube under the name "Travis Tragedy". Everyone made fun of me, because I really wasn't that great starting out. I still hadn't grown into my voice and never took voice lessons, so I tought myself the stuff I do know over the years.
I still kept this up Freshman year, and it just got worse, since I was now in high school. So many rumors and stuff started, and people already hated on me because of my music. With the gay thing in the mix as well, I was not a popular person in my high school (as far as being well liked). I was, however, very well known in my high school. Everyone started knowing my name and who I was, and I took full advantage of this. I didn't care if anyone liked me and my music or not, I just wanted to do what I loved - and since I was already well known in my area, I went ahead and continued on with it. I started gaining a bit of popularity on MySpace, getting over 15,000 friends by the time MySpace died.
Sophmore year started, and by this time I was starting to get sick of being hated on. So I slowly started finding people who had an interest in me, and changed to fit in with them - these people ended up being the popluar girls. And like the typical popluar girls, they made fun of everyone and thought they were so amazing. I hate saying it, but I started acting and doing the same thing, although I never really liked it. But I was at least finally with people who "liked" me (even though I never noticed until now, there was actually other people who liked me). This same year in 2010, I did a cover of "Take It Off" by Ke$ha with a producer from another country. He uploaded it to his YouTube, and before he took it down this year, it gained 50,000 views! That got me very noticed. I started working on my own music that year, instead of just doing covers as well under the name "Selebrity". Melissa Marie Green from the "Millionaires" (a popluar internet band that, at the time, consisted of Melissa Marie Green, Alisson "Wonderland" Green, and Dani "Gore" Artaud, in which Dani left the band a month or so after this video was put up) made a "Fan of the Month" video about me on YouTube, which got me even more noticed.
Do not get fooled, however. With my popluarity getting a bit greater (for someone from a very small town), I got made fun of a lot more. Even hanging out with the popluar girls didn't help. So, with other reasons other than just depression and bullying, I decided to drop out of high school my Junior year of high school, which began August 2010. There was a lot of things that happened in between my Freshman year up until this point that I did not cover that lead to me dropping out as well, and I do not wish to speak publicly about it either. These memories are not something I wish share as of now, but I do know they will help others who have gone through similar things. So I do plan on talking about them some time, just not now.
After dropping out, another event happened to me that helped me gain a bit of popularity. I am a fan of Oxygen's "The Bad Girls Club", and heard a few months before the show started about a girl from Lexington, Kentucky was joining the cast that season. So I looked her up and found her on Twitter and Facebook: Lauren Spears is her name. I added her and followed her, but never actually spoke to her until Decemeber - a month before her season started. We spoke quite often, actually, then a bit before the season started, I made a fan Twitter and Facebook for her. She followed me on my fan pages and personal pages, and we ended up speaking a lot more. I actually became one of the more popluar pages, mainly because she gave me a personal shout-out on Oxygen Live's coverage of one of the episodes featuring Tanisha from season 2 interviewing her. A lot of people found me and actually became a fan of me and my music. I already released two singles on iTunes and other online stores in October and December of 2010 under the name Selebrity. I gained tons of subscrbers on my music YouTube channel before I deleted it, and tons of followers on Twitter from the MySpace days, the Millionaires event, and the Lauren event (on top of my own personal promoting I did for myself).
March of 2011, I decided to get my GED and passed on my first try. Other than that, 2011 was kind of a slow year. I started my new music YouTube channel that year in March as well, but never actually uploaded anything to it until August. My first cover of "The Only Exception" got about 300 or so views, until I uploaded my 2nd cover of "Someone Like You". "Someone Like You" is my most popular cover as of now, with close to 8,000 views. The popluarity of this cover caused my first cover to get a few more views as well. Then, I uploaded a cover of "Skyscraper" and "Turning Tables". Both have close to 2,000 views as of now, "Someone Like You" still being my most popluar cover to date. March of this year, I started redoing all of my own music I worked on back in 2010, including the singles I released under the name Selebrity. I rereleased my single "My Confessions..." after reworking it and rewriting it. Then, in June, I released a brand new single "I Am Me". Both were released online worldwide.
Due to my laptop crashing and losing everything I had worked on, I decided to no longer work on my EP until I could get a job to pay a professional producer to work with me. I uploaded a few more covers and gained a few more followers in the past few months, but nothing big has happened yet. Cut to now: I still have no job to pay a producer to work with me, I'm still doing covers on YouTube, and I still have the online support I've had through this entire time. I do not plan on stopping anytime soon, either.
My future plans are: audition for TV shows, get a job and work on my music as professionally as I can, once I get an EP done I plan on doing at least one music video, promoting as much as I can, continuing with my YouTube covers, and finally moving out of Kentucky. So please, if you'd like to keep up with me: add me, follow me or subscribe to me on my other profiles. There is still so much to do in my life, and I can't wait to do them and share my experiences with everyone.
NEW MySpace: http://new.myspace.com/AidenHawthorne
Personal Facebook: http://facebook.com/AidenHawthorneBentley
Facebook Fan Page: https://www.facebook.com/AidenHawthorneOfficial
I auditioned for a TV show (I wanna keep which one a surprise :P). Anyway, I had to include my Facebook "like" page in the application. If you don't mind, PLEASE go like my page. The more likes they see, the better it will look on me. Thank you so much if you do :)
READING THIS TAKES 2 MINUTES AND HELPING ME TAKES 3-4, SO PLEASE TAKE THE TIME! IT WOULD MEAN SO MUCH. <3
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