William Kalubi Mwamba (born May 10, 1992) is a highly acclaimed rapper, singer, and songwriter of Belgian-Congolese descent, known professionally by the stage name Damso. His musical talents have garnered widespread admiration and recognition, particularly in France, where every one of his albums has achieved the prestigious platinum certification, solidifying his status as a significant figure in the French music scene.
Damso was born and raised in Kinshasa, Zaire, which is now recognized as the Democratic Republic of the Congo. His Mother, Rose Marthe, while his Father is a medical doctor in Kinshasha.
However, at the age of nine, Damso‘s life took a dramatic turn. The region was marred by brutal armed conflicts and instability, forcing his family to make the difficult decision to leave their homeland. As refugees, they embarked on a journey seeking safety and stability. This period of their lives was marked by uncertainty and constant movement, as they were often on the run, seeking refuge from the turmoil that plagued their homeland.
Ultimately, Damso and his family found their way to Belgium, where they hoped to rebuild their lives in a more secure environment. However, the challenges of adapting to a new country, culture, and language were formidable. Despite the difficulties, they persevered and began establishing a life in Belgium.
Their journey eventually led them to settle in the Brussels suburb of Matonge, located in the Ixelles district known for its significant Congolese community, providing a familiar sense of connection and community for Damso‘s family.
Damso‘s educational journey in Belgium began when he was enrolled in a local school. However, his academic performance posed significant challenges, leading to a difficult decision by his Father. After completing secondary school, Damso’s parents encouraged him to continue his studies, and he pursued a degree in marketing and psychology.
However, he began spending considerable time in recording studios, and his grades suffered. As he struggled with his grades, he was kicked out of his house. Faced with his academic struggles, Damso‘s Father made the tough choice to ask him to leave the family home. This turning point marked a critical juncture in Damso‘s life as he was thrust into the harsh reality of life on the streets.
According to Damso, racism had a negative impact on his decision-making, made him feel unaccepted, and drove him to engage in illicit activities. He notes that while he was upset, it also gave him the drive to make his own decisions. Damso had no interest in working behind a desk for a boss who called him a “dirty nigger,” he refused to put up with such treatment just to make ends meet.
Damso’s career began in 2006 when he first emerged as a young rapper. He initially cut his teeth performing at underground and local events, honing his craft and laying the foundation for a remarkable career. During this formative period, he partnered with his childhood friend Dolfa to establish the rap group OPG. As time passed, the group expanded with the addition of Ducke, Lio Brown, and Rex, creating a collaborative environment that fostered creativity and growth.
In 2014, Damso took a significant step in his career by releasing his debut solo album, “Salle d’attente.” This marked his emergence as a solo artist, showcasing his unique style and lyrical prowess. The journey to stardom received a significant boost in 2015 when his track “Poseidon” was featured on Booba’s OKLM mixtape, elevating his status and introducing him to a wider audience.
The turning point in Damso’s career came with his signing to Universal Music and his association with Booba’s renowned 92i collective. This collaboration opened doors to new opportunities and expanded his fan base, thanks in no small part to his exceptional verses and lyrical talent.
Damso’s albums have consistently achieved remarkable success in France. His debut studio album, “Batterie Faible,” released on July 8, 2016, quickly became a hit, selling over 100,000 copies quickly. His subsequent albums, “Ipséité” and “Lithopedion,” earned triple platinum certification within six months and one week, respectively, underscoring his growing influence in the music industry.
In 2020, Damso’s album “QALF” further solidified his place in the musical pantheon, receiving a coveted triple platinum certification. His enduring appeal, innovative sound, and lyrical depth continue to captivate audiences and cement his reputation as one of the most prominent figures in the French music scene.
- Salle d’attente
- Batterie faible
- QALF Infinity
- MTV Europe Music Awards
Damso presents an imposing and physically commanding presence, often leaving people with an impression of authority and alpha male charisma. His robust physique contributes to this perception, making him appear like a commanding figure in the music industry.
In 2018, Damso was initially slated to create an anthem for Belgium in preparation for their participation in the FIFA World Cup. However, controversy arose due to the content of some of his songs, which had been criticized for their misogynistic themes. This led to a wave of appeals and debates, ultimately resulting in the cancellation of his invitation to work on the anthem. The decision sparked discussions around artistic freedom, lyrics, and societal responsibility in the music industry.
Despite his notable presence in music, Damso remains an intensely private individual who prefers to keep his personal life shielded from the public eye. Consequently, very little is known about his activities and interests beyond the stage, adding an air of mystery to his persona.
- Instagram: @thedamso
Damso is a successful artist who has a stunning net worth of US$5 million in approximation.