Pheto Mbulelo Mabena (born March 1, 1990), better known by his stage name J.Smallz, is a South African R&B singer, songwriter, record producer, dancer, sound engineer, and graphic designer. J.Smallz is well known for his contributions to artists like Ayanda Jiya, Ginger Breadman and Kid Tini. J.Smallz is currently under the label TinismDotc0m.
J.Smallz was born in Springs, Johannesburg and later moved to Witbank, Mpumalanga. He grew up in a home where his father listened to the likes of Nina Simone, Hugh Masekela and Jimmy Dludlu whilst his mother enjoyed the sounds of Miriam Makeba, Letta Mbulu and Brenda Fassie. These sounds would later come to influence J.Smallz in his later life.
Whilst in high school at St. Thomas Aquinas, J.Smallz got into the Mpumalanga youth choir and learned how to play drums, piano, recorder, and marimbas. His talent, particularly with the marimbas, got him and his marimba team an album deal with a local radio community station called Radio Kragbron. He later joined a rock band with a few high school friends called J.S.G (Just Some Guys) where he learned how to play bass and electric guitar.
For the next few years, J.Smallz met and worked with upcoming rapper and sound engineer GEE, where he got to work alongside local rappers such as BlackLez, FlexBoogie, N'Veigh, BeatOven, Ras and many more within the Pretoria region. In 2011, He joined the label TinismDotc0m where he began work with Ayanda Jiya and Ginger Breadman. J.Smallz beat production became more noticeable after works like "Happier Alone” by Ayanda Jiya, "Brand New” and "Fede Bade" by Ginger Breadman and "JustFlexin" by FlexBoogie. His talent and particular ear to music got the attention of beatmakers Trompie Beatmochini and TowdeeMac (from Morafe). Together they started a beat production house called The Faculty in 2012.
J.Smallz has also worked on particular projects such as V.I.C for Ayanda Jiya, Mo Better by Ginger Breadman and most notably Khuli Chana's (one of Motswako's biggest acts in South Africa) latest singles "Ma Hamba Wedwa" and "Money". J.Smallz has released his own single entitled "Inferno" featuring Idols South Africa Season 9 finalist Amy Jones in 2015.
J.Smallz has performed numerous times with poet KB (Kilobyte) playing both acoustic guitar and piano during his performances from 2009-2011. He also played guitar for a Neo-Soul group called Re-chorded Soul, opening for Black Coffee at an event hosted by InkoMuzik in 2010. He too has played drums for Ginger Breadman during a live radio showcasing on Yfm's "Live and reYired" hosted by Dj Sabby. Played Guitar for Ayanda Jiya at Metro Fm, Khaya FM.