|Birth name||David Lubega|
|Also known as||Lou Bega|
13 April 1975 |
Munich, Bavaria, West Germany
|Genres||Pop, Latin pop, mambo|
|Labels||Lautstark, BMG, RCA Records, Condon Musical Enterprise, Unicade Music, DA Music, Big Records|
Lou Bega (born David Lubega on 13 April 1975) is a German musician of Italian and Ugandan descent. He is most famous for "Mambo No. 5", a remake of the Perez Prado instrumental from 1949. Bega added his own words to the song and sampled the original version extensively.
Personal life 
Bega's mother is from Sicily in Southern Italy and his father is Ugandan. His father went to Germany in 1972 to study biology at the Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich. Until age six, Bega spent the most time with his mother in Italy. Then they lived permanently in Munich, where Bega attended German primary school. At age 15 he lived in Miami for one-and-a-half years. Bega also lived in Uganda for half a year. Currently he lives in Berlin, Germany.
Bega has other musicians in his family that have achieved minor success. One notably is his nephew, Phil Kosch of Chicago band Treaty of Paris and Super Happy Fun Club, who toured with many national acts such as Yellowcard, The Spill Canvas, and Jack's Mannequin.
Bega started his musical career as a rapper. At the age of 13, he founded a hip hop group with two other boys. It would be two years before Bega and his friends' first CD would be released in 1990. When Bega lived in Miami he discovered Latin music. After returning to Munich he met his former manager, Goar Biesenkamp, as well as the music producers "Frank Lio" (Achim Kleist) and "D.Fact" (Wolfgang von Webenau) (Syndicate Musicproduction) with whom he developed the concept for the song "Mambo No. 5 (A Little Bit of...)". Bega signed a recording contract to the label Lautstark. Lou Bega's musical signature consists of combining musical elements of the 40's and 50s with modern beats and grooves.
His first single "Mambo No. 5 (A Little Bit of...)" became an instant worldwide hit charting at No. 1 in most European countries including Germany, UK and France and at No. 3 in the United States. In France "Mambo No. 5" spent twenty weeks at #1, which is an unbroken record to date. It was also used by the British television broadcaster, Channel 4 for their coverage of Test Match cricket between 1999 and 2005. 
On 19 July 1999 he released the album A little bit of Mambo. It peaked at No. 3 in the USA. In Germany, Bega's native country, it also peaked at #3. In the UK the album peaked only at #50. A Little Bit of Mambo peaked at No. 1 in the album charts of Austria, Canada, Finland, Hungary, the Middle East, Portugal, and Switzerland. The second single, "I Got a Girl", charted well, entering the Top 10 in some European countries including France, Finland and Belgium. The third single, "Tricky, Tricky", achieved number 18 on the Canadian charts and number 74 on the American Billboard Charts. "Mambo Mambo" reached number 11 on the French charts.
Bega's second studio album Ladies and Gentlemen was released on 28 May 2001. "Baby Keep Smiling" is on this album, a duet with Compay Segundo from Buena Vista Social Club. A Little Bit of Mambo includes a version without him. Bega also covered the standard "Just a Gigolo / I Ain't Got Nobody" on Ladies and Gentlemen.
He released his third studio album Lounatic in March 2005 and re-released it in August 2006 with different tracklisting.
Live performances 
Bega's live shows in Las Vegas, Tokyo, Moscow, Hong Kong and the Emirates were hugely successful. He is a popular guest in both the corporate and public sector, appearing on stage for Royals as well as international corporations. Bega was invited to talk and TV shows like The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, Ally McBeal, Motown Live, Jenny Jones, Queen Latifah, Access Hollywood, and others. Bega was the only artist ever to be asked to sing a song twice on Germany's headlining show Wetten, dass..? On New Year's Eve 2007 he performed in front of 170,000 fans in Poland. Bega often gets a crack at playing the host. He was the MC at the American Music Awards, at the Grammy Awards, the Billboard Radio Awards, and at the Love Parade in Berlin.
Other appearances 
Bega sang the theme song for the Disney Channel animated series, Brandy & Mr. Whiskers.
In the computer game Tropico, Bega is one of the characters someone can choose as their dictatorial persona. He was included as part of a licensing deal that also saw Bega's song "Club Elitaire" integrated into the German release of Tropico. Also, in the Ubi Soft/Disney Interactive video game Walt Disney's The Jungle Book Rhythm n' Groove, Bega participates in a challenge with his namesake. The player dances as King Louie, attempting to dance to Bega's rendition of "I Wanna Be Like You". Doing so will unlock a video of him with children dancing to the aforementioned song. Bega also wrote the theme song for the French cartoon series Marsupilami.
- Studio albums
Music videos 
|1999||Mambo No. 5 (A Little Bit of...)||Jorn Heitmann|
|1999||I Got a Girl||–|
|2001||Just a Gigolo||–|
|2006||C'est la Vie (Lou Bega and Edvin Marton)||–|
|2006||You Wanna Be Americano||–|
|2010||Sweet Like Cola||Oliver Sommer|
Music video appearances 
|2000||I Wanna Be Like You||Volker Hannvacker||Disney video from the PC Game Jungle Book|
|2000||Disney Mambo No. 5 (A Little Bit of...)||–||Radio Disney version of "Mambo No. 5 (A Little Bit of...)"|
- "C'est la Vie" – In 2006 Bega recorded a song with Edvin Marton, and a music video was also filmed. The song has only appeared on Marton's album Stradivarius as a bonus track and was never featured on any of Bega's albums. A slightly different version of this song was available on Bega's MySpace page at one time.
- 1999: "Best International Song", Festivalbar (for "Mambo No. 5 (A Little Bit of...)")
- 2000: "International Song of the Year", NRJ Music Awards (for "Mambo No. 5 (A Little Bit of...)")
- 2000: "Single of the Year (National)", ECHO (for "Mambo No. 5 (A Little Bit of...)")
- 2000: "Best National Artist in Foreign Countries", ECHO
Bega was awarded the German Echo Prize in two categories as well as being nominated five times. Other accolades include a Grammy Award nomination, a World Music Entertainment Award in Cannes, the Blockbuster Entertainment Award in Los Angeles, the Festival Bar of Verona, the Amadeus Award of Vienna, and the Bunte New Faces Award in Berlin. Bega tours around the world with his band. A 22-city tour of the USA with Cher, live show appearances throughout South America with concerts in Rio de Janeiro, Buenos Aires and São Paulo, and a tour through India with stops in Bombay, New Delhi, Madras, Bangalore and Calcutta have been some of the highlights along the way. Over 200 concerts in Europe have attracted over three million fans and viewers.
- LOU BEGA – the official website. "Lou Bega's official website". Lou-bega.com. Retrieved 31 March 2012.
- "Interview with Lou Bega (in German)". Planet-interview.de. Retrieved 31 March 2012.
- BMG Berlin Lautstark. "Artists under contract to ''Lautstark''". Lautstark.de. Retrieved 31 March 2012.
- "Suchergebnis (Search)". Text "Charts-surfer.de" ignored (help)
- "Uk Top 40 Hit Database". EveryHit.com.
- "LOU BEGA – Mambo No. 5 (A Little Bit of...)". Swiss Charts.
- Steffen Hung. "French single chart". Lescharts.com. Retrieved 31 March 2012.
- "Mambo hit knocks fans for six". BBC News. 9 August 1999. Retrieved 31 March 2012.
- Chart positions of A Little Bit of Mambo and Mambo No. 5[dead link]
- "LOU BEGA – I Got a Girl". Swiss Charts.
- "Album credits of ''Ladies and Gentlemen'' on". Artistdirect.com. Retrieved 31 March 2012.
- LOU BEGA – the official website. "the official website". Lou Bega. Retrieved 31 March 2012.
- "Official website of the PC game "Tropico" (in German)". Tropico.de. Retrieved 31 March 2012.
- "videogames.yahoo.com". videogames.yahoo.com. 20 January 2012. Retrieved 31 March 2012.