Gandhi Djuna (born 6 May 1986), better known by his stage name Maître Gims, is a French rapper. He was part of the rap group Sexion d’Assaut and has developped his solo career with a major solo release, his album Subliminal.
Gandhi Djuna, born in Zaire with his brother, immigrated to France when he was just two years old. Growing up in the 3rd arrondissement of Paris, he later moved to the 9th arrondissement and eventually the 19th arrondissement. Taking the name of Gims, he rapped at college with his friends of Sexion d’Assaut while studying communication and graphical arts. He also worked part-time as a courrier at night.
He recorded his first track with Sexion d’Assaut “Coup 2 Pression” and worked with JR in the Prototype 3015 duo project. He decided to add Maître to his name Gims and also used the pseudonyme “le Fléau” (“the Bane”). He also worked on a number of independent releases, and a mixtape La Terre du Milieu (“Middle-Earth”)as part of 3e Prototype after taking Dawala as manager. In 2007, he also worked as producer, wrote instrumental pieces and released his maxi Pour ceux qui dorment les yeux ouverts(“For those who sleep with open eyes”). On the maxi were tracks with Sexion d’Assaut, rapper Koma (from Scred Connexion) and a singer Carole. Continuing to record tracks with Sexion d’Assaut at two Inch’All Star battles, he became a well-known French freestyler. He also took part with 3e Prototype in a new street album called Le Renouveau (“The Rebirth”).
In 2011, Maître Gims issued a collaboration with his father Djuna Djanana in a new album of Djanana and in 2012, was the artist for a Comics book called Au cœur du vortex(“In the Heart of the Vortex”).
Maître Gims heavily promoted the release of his 2013 album Subliminal as he announced with the video “Welcome to the Wa Part. 4: La Consécration”. He also released a series of 6 consecutive releases included unpublished materials called Ceci n’est pas un Clip. He released “Meurtre par strangulation” (M.P.S.) as a first pre-release from the Subliminal album. Just two weeks later, he released a second track from the album “J’me tire”, that topped the SNEP official French Singles Chart. Subliminal was a big commercial success and made it to number 2 in the French albums chart and number 1 in the Belgian French charts. Then, a new edition titled “La face cachée” was released by Wati B and Jive Records, containing 6 additional tracks in addition to the 18 tracks on the original Subliminal release.
Maître Gims released his second album, Mon coeur avait raison on 28 August 2015. The album is divided into Pilule bleue (15 tracks) and Pilule rouge (11 tracks). The album reached number one in France SNEP and in Belgium Ultratop. The song “Est-ce que tu m’aimes?” reached number one in Italy FIMI and number 3 in France SNEP and was a popular hit throughout several European countries after its release.
On 23 March 2018, Maître Gims released his third album La Ceinture Noire. The album includes a total of 40 tracks, including tracks like a remix of the popular Armenian hit Mi Gna featuring Armenian American DJ Super Sako and Hayko, “Corazón” featuring American rapper Lil Wayne, “Loup Garou” featuring French rapper Sofiane, and “La Même” featuring French singer Vianney. The album reached #1 in French charts SNEP for eleven weeks.
Maître Gims created his own record label MMC (standing for Monstre Marin Corporation) that is affiliated with Universal Music France. He signed rapper Bedjik (his younger sibling), rapper Yanslo (19e arrondissement), DJ Last One who already DJs for Maitre Gims and Amalya, a contestant in The Voice, la plus belle voix,
Coming from a musical family, his father was Djuna Djanana, a vocalist of Papa Wemba’s band. Maître Gims’ brother Dadju is a member of the group The Shin Sekaï. Brothers Bedjik and Xgangs are also rappers in their own right.
Maître Gims married very young and is the father to four children. Born to Christian parents, he converted to Islam in 2004.
In 2013, immediately following the huge international success of “J’me tire”, Maître Gims launched Vortex, his own clothing line. In the music video for “J’me tire”, he is seen wearing one of his Vortex creation T-shirts.
2013 – Subliminal
2015 – Mon cœur avait raison
2018 – Ceinture noire
US TOUR DATES:
11/1 @ Variety Playhouse – Atlanta, GA – TICKETS
11/3 @ Concord Music Hall – Chicago, IL – TICKETS
11/8 @ Terminal 5 – New York, NY – TICKETS
11/9 @ South Side Music Hall – Dallas, TX – TICKETS
11/10 @ The Novo – Los Angeles, CA – TICKETS