jean bedel tshituka mpiana was born on 2nd of june 1967 in kananga,in the region of kasai, he is the children of mama agnès lusambo and papa albert mbuyi mpiana and has several brothers and sisters from different mothers,some of them get often mentioned in his songs like coco mbuyi, gaston aka gas' mpiana,his late brother laurent fabrice, magalie mpiana who is very often at his concerts ....
he was named jean bedel in reference to centrafican president bokassa
he was called tshituka because in luba culture its the name used for premature babies,in fact he was born shortly after 6th month and had to be taken to kinshasa two weeks after birth and almost died several times at hospital but once he is heading towards his second year of life all goes well,he starts walking and talking
jb mpiana is (re) married to amida shatur and father of 10 "official" kids
he is a great fan of soccer and the teams of tp mazembe,arsenal and real madrid
either at professional or personal level he is known for being nice and generous but also somebody who is very difficult to get back once he is angry against you
like he says himself either he loves you deeply,or he blacklists you when you fall out
apart from his musical career,he has several types of business which contributed to his wealth as from his own words" due to poor respect of copyright laws the only way to become very rich is having other business"
talking about private business and music,he plans by 2018 opening two studios in other big cities of congo,of course kananga being among them,in order to help young musicians outside kinshasa showcase their talent on national level,as the congolese music is basically the kinshasa music but absolutely wants support from authorities as it happens with other artists in their projects,like for example youssou ndour of senegal
he never talks about his father in interviews or songs because he was killed like an animal by mobutu for suggesting him to stop human sacrifices and drinking human blood( his dad was one of mobutu's advisers)
its also one of the reasons he does not like to take big risks in regard with politics since what happened to his dad showed him how easily you can be put in serious trouble if you challenge the power of big political authorities
ROLE MODELS AND DEBUT AS A SINGER
The first one is very obvious and well know, papa wemba,for who jb once said in an interview"its not blasphemy,but after the Almighty God,for me its papa wemba",sign of an immense admiration for him
he was even leaving home discretly every almost every wednesday and saturday to go watch papa wemba live at bar vis a vis and even when his mother knew it and gave him big punishement he continued doing it
and when he became a professional singer,he was sometimes going to wemba's home and record videos of him to learn how he talks,the way he walks,his approach of clothes...
The second role model is king kester,even though he did not imitates his voice,but rather the rhtyhm in his songs and like with wemba that taste of clothes
third model is debaba el shabab,whose voice jb was actually imitating quite well
and the last one,which will surprise,is james brown he fell in love with during his concert at legendary boxing event between mohamed ali and george foreman in kinshasa
jb's first contact with music happen when he is seven years old,during holidays in kananga were he impresses with his dancing for such a kid and his grandmother predicts to him "one day,you will do big things with your dancing skills"
he really starts getting into singing aroud 10,as he tries to sing songs of papa wemba,kalle jeff,rochereau... and when walking in streets and he listens to any songs or any note of music has to stop by and listen,which will actually link his destiny with group wenge musica
at 13 he starts singing a bit at church and follows elder brothers and friends in the school groups and finally starts singing with them with his friend blaise bula he has had all primary school with,naty lokole and his big friend mbuinga kamboleta titina aka petit richacha(which jb will later name titina alcapone) who were few classes behind
Then when 14 he leaves the school athenee de la gombe for itc of ngaliema where he will also sing in the school group alonside guys like sam tshintu,modogo abarambwa,and also adolphe ebondja aka dominguez...in the group itc flash
in march of 1982 when heading back home from his aunt's house, he meets on his way a group of young men rehearsing the song ngabelo of kester's victoria eleison
those guys are werra(he will transform later in werrason,hence the little attack in th in the song laureats 2000), didier masela,aime bwanga,machiro kifaya,dede masolo deno,jean belix luvutula...and tenorist machiro kifaya does not reach those high notes of debaba well, golden opportunity for jb who asked if he could sing with them if he could sing with them and he impresses with his interpretation of debaba and goes home
few days later,jean belix he was school mates with in ngaliema asks him he would mind joining them as he is a good singer and he then joins wenge musica
they start meeting each other whenever they have holidays but at the same time jb also sings in his hometown kananga whenever he goes there and starts earning himself a good reputation with his interpretation of papa wemba and debaba
months after his arrival in wenge mlusica,he introduces his friend blaise bula to the group and two years later does the same with his friend adolphe
his desire to become a musician becomes bigger and biggers and his class results start dropping which make his mother very angry and he is kicked out of home as she is fed up of him coming home very late because of his passion for music both as a singer and a spectator
he then goes to live with his aunt who accepts he can live for his passion as maybe its his destiny
him and his wenge musica friends start peforming one or two songs at concerts before big groups like victoria,empire bakuba,zaiko and co go on stage
he fails at his high school diploma and does not even want to hear about school anymore but his friends especially werrason ,who he kept thanking for that even in hot polemic days, convince him to restart and he will succeed
this is what happens in 1985 and he starts studying marketing alongside werrason and his friend wasenga kimpuni but quickly gets bored and driven with his extreme determination to become a professional musician,and star,decides stopping class halfway through the year which creates tension between him and relatives as 'he is the first one who has not completed his university years and aimed for a more respectable job)
him and wenge musica friends start planning first album in which he will have a first step to stardom....(continues below)