Born John Gilchrist and raised in North Oakland, Genra has been around music for as long as he can remember. Coming up, his father would always play artists like Stevie Wonder & BeBe & CeCe Winans in the house.
By middle school, he’d begin recording his own music on cassette tapes. During sophomore year of high school, Genra started perfecting his craft. A friend gave him a tape with nothing but jazzy boom bap instrumentals. It became the music he started writing to, shaping his style. Growing up in Oakland, people would listen to him rap and sing and often say “you have your own style. It’s like you’re your own genre.” From there, the artist name, Genra took root.
“I grew up on Bay Area music. I lived through the hyphy movement, but I still loved the Hieroglyphics & Souls of Mischief. That’s what I practiced. When I graduated high school, I started modeling for Ford Models full time on a three year contract. I was in GQ, Nike, Levi’s etc. I met with a good amount of record labels who liked my look and writing but were unsure about the lane I was in. But I kept making the music I love and it’s starting to pay off.”
His first single of the year is one for any hip-hop head to add to their music collections. Give it a listen now, available across all streaming platforms!