Meet Adam Saleh: YouTube star, prankster, part-time rapper and actor. We catch up the multi-faceted millennial ahead of his very own stage show in Dubai this month.
Adam Saleh sure has luck on his side. He was invited to meet US chat show queen Ellen Degeneres after wowing her as part of her Dare To Dance challenge over four years ago.
Since then, the 23-year-old has racked up more than 325,000,000 views on his comedy YouTube channel, which is impressive considering he started it as “a simple way to store memories to look back on”.
Now his viral prank videos, mostly aimed at his unsuspecting parents and friends, are so popular that he’s stopped in the street by fans. They’re clearly a passionate bunch, too; one overzealous admirer recently climbed on top of his car during a trip to Qatar. “It was crazy. The whole vehicle was actually shaking.”
DOHA has been CRAZY!!!!! This was the reason I couldn’t go inside 😂 sorry once again to everyone who was inside waiting!! There were so many of you! It truly made my day! I’m working on making a show happen in Doha soon! Much LOVE ❤️ ADOOMYGANG are savages hahaha
A video posted by Adam Saleh (@adamsaleh) on
The Brooklyn boy is a proud Muslim and, as many of the videos touch on Islam, he’s often held up as a role model. But it doesn’t seem to faze him. “I want to use my platform to spread knowledge of Islam and show aspects of my religion that the media doesn’t,” he says. “I want to show people that they should be proud to be Muslims.”
A photo posted by Adam Saleh (@adamsaleh) on
A jack of all trades, the vlogger can also boast actor and rapper as part of his repertoire. He released his debut single Diamond Girl alongside singer and fellow YouTuber Sheikh Akbar, featuring Mumzy Stranger in May 2015, which is the same year he flexed his acting muscles in American Sharia.
Now the star is taking his antics on tour. “There’ll be lots of comedy skits. It’s like doing a live YouTube video,” he says. “I tell untold stories about my life and do some fun Q&As and challenges with the audience. I also perform my songs, so there’s a lot going on.”
3 of Adam’s best pranks:
The one with dates
This involved Adam and a mate asking friends if “they wanted a date”. Cue freak out and then Adam literally handing over a date of the palm tree variety. “This was one of my first pranks to go viral and it was so much fun to film. Every reaction was so crazy. I really just wanted to give them a date… to eat.”
The one with a fake pregnant girlfriend
This involved Adam telling his conservative 65-year-old dad that his girlfriend of two weeks was with child: “This was my first ever prank on my dad. He went crazy, but also showed me his positivity and love, which has taught me a lot.”
The one with the infected hair dye
“This was on my nephew Jamal and niece Reema. They’re so young and believed everything I was saying, which made it even funnier.”
This is me in Dubai 2 years ago!!! I visited for a couple of days and it was one of the most AMAZING cities ever!! I met so many of you and I promised you all I'll be back with a show soon!! It's finally happening!!! SEPTEMBER 22nd I'll be performing in DUBAI!! It's already half way sold out and I barely even promoted it! You all are crazyyyy!!! TICKETS AND INFO are in my BIO 🙂 click on the link and it'll take you straight there! Can't wait to see you all!! It's about to be litttttttttt 🔥 see you soon!! 😏
Ductac, Mall Of The Emirates, Al Barsha, Dubai, 6.30pm, Dhs150. Tel: (04) 3414777. Metro: Mall Of The Emirates. ductac.org