Bryshere Y. Gray is an American actor and rapper who goes by the nicknames Yazz or Yazz The Greatest. He is most known for his role as Hakeem Lyon from the Fox musical drama TV series Empire. Being Hakeem in that series gave him the spotlight he needed to elevate his career to the next level. He lived the character and, in the process, warmed the hearts of many who fell in love with his acting on the series.
From the very beginning of Empire, it was apparent that Bryshere is a very talented individual both as a rapper and an actor. He started making headlines, and at some point, there were some rumours that he is the son of hip-hop legend Jay Z. All the publicity and attention helped propel his career even higher, but a dark cloud hangs over his reputation after reports emerged that he was arrested for allegedly abusing his wife.
Bryshere Y. Gray profile summary
- Name: Bryshere Yazuan Gray
- Nicknames: Yazz The Greatest, Yazz
- Date of birth: November 28th, 1993
- Place of birth: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
- Yazz The Greatest Age: 26 years old
- Birth sign: Sagittarius
- Mother: Andria Mayberry
- Occupation: Actor, rapper
Bryshere Gray bio
Bryshere Yazuan Gray was born on November 28th, 1993, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. He prefers to be called by his stage name Yazz The Greatest or simply Yazz. Bryshere Gray’s mother, Andria Mayberry, got pregnant with him when she was still a teenager. His parents divorced when he was a child.
He went to the Overbrook High School, where he played football but later switched to music at 16 years after getting injured. With time, he began to perform in the streets to earn some money to help out his single mother. Eventually, he was noticed by manager Charlie Mack who partnered with him.
As a teenager, Gray used to work at Pizza Hut when he started to rap. He recalls how he began rhyming and fell in love with it. He spent some of the money he had earned from Pizza Hut to fund his first music video. He got himself into trouble by being fired for writing songs while at work. This did not kill his morale as he started to perform anywhere he could including the streets.
Gray adopted the stage name Yazz while he was trying to form a rap flow. His persistence led to him getting noticed, which is how he landed some high-profile appearances. He got the opportunity to play at Jay-Z's Made in America Festival and Power 99's Powerhouse concert in 2013.
Through such performances, Charlie Mack, a friend of Jamie Foxx and Will Smith, spotted him and eventually became his manager, thus opening new opportunities for the young rapper.
Gray, who plays Hakeem on Empire, was broke and almost getting evicted when Charlie helped him audition for the Fox drama series. He got the audition on the same day as Terrence and Taraji, which was the turning point of his life.
He did not have prior acting experience but landed the role of Hakeem Lyon. His skill as a rapper came in handy because Hakeem was supposed to be a hip-hop performer and the youngest son of music mogul Lucious Lyon. He contributed several songs to the Empire soundtrack, including Power of the Empire and Drip Drop, and that is how he got himself a record deal with Columbia.
Little was known about the dating life or even relationship status of Bryshere Gray until recently. The actor was arrested for allegedly assaulting his wife. Even after that, the identity of his wife has not yet been disclosed.
What happened to Bryshere Y Gray? According to Gray’s wife, he assaulted her for hours and choked her until she was partially unconscious. She sought the help of a passer-by who called the police.
It took the police about nine hours before they arrested Gray because he barricaded himself inside his house, and a team of negotiators, along with SWAT, had to get involved. The alleged wife was taken to hospital for treatment for the injuries she had and then discharged later.
Bryshere Gray’s daughter
It is not known whether Bryshere has kids of his own, but he loves children. On numerous occasions, he has shared photos of himself spending some time with his on-screen daughter, baby Bella.
How tall is Bryshere Gray? The actor’s height is 5 feet and 8 inches (173 cm) tall. Gray weighs 71 Kg (156.5 lbs). His other body measurements include 41-14-33 inches for his chest, biceps, and waist, respectively.
Before Empire, Gray did not have any acting experience, but his role on the show was spot on, and he was rewarded with several nominations. Some of the prominent nominations he has received include:
- 2015: Choice TV: Breakout Star: Empire
- 2015: Choice TV: Chemistry: Empire
- 2015: Choice Music: Song From a Movie or TV Show: You’re So Beautiful with Jussie Smollett
- 2016: Outstanding New Artist (NAACP Image Awards)
- 2016 NAACP Image Awards: Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series: Empire
- 2018: Best Actor: Empire (BET Awards)
How much is Bryshere Y Gray worth? Gray’s net worth is currently $2 million. Most of Gray’s fortune today is from Empire, which became successful partly because of the young actor and other members' talent. Gray also makes money as a rapper. He is signed to Columbia Records since 2015.
Bryshere Y. Gray has tried to live a low-key private life away from the public eye. He was almost successful at that, but given his celebrity status, that would not have lasted forever. Recently, he was arrested, and the world got to know that the actor is married. His wife's identity has not been revealed, but it won't be long before the world knows her.