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Meet Gina

Today we’d like to introduce you to Gina.

Gina, let’s start with your story. We’d love to hear how you got started and how the journey has been so far.
I am an R&B singer/songwriter born and raised in Chicago, Illinois. I began singing when I was seven in the church choir. From there I sang in my high school concert choir where I competed in various classical music competitions, also during that time I released my first music video and single “Be Mine”. For a brief period of time, I stopped pursuing music to focus on earning my degree.

After teaching with Chicago Public Schools, I decided to quit at the close of the school year to relocate to Los Angeles where I would recommit myself to my music career. Now in Los Angeles, I continue to teach the inner city youth of Los Angeles, as that is my way of giving back to communities that are similar to the ones that nourished and helped mold me back home in Chicago. Over the course of my first year being here, I have redeemed myself from my hiatus, releasing several singles and my debut EP “Nostalgia”. Most of my life, I have lacked talent in many areas I wish I could flourish in, poetry, storybook writing, painting, sewing, and especially dancing. However, singing was the one thing I was able to grasp, hold onto, and turn into a passion. The other things mention above were my attempts at coping with things going on in my life. However, my music was the outlet that I needed to speak.

Has it been a smooth road?
Are there any journeys with smooth roads? There have been times where I’ve had many words to say, but writer’s block so bad nothing would come out. Other times I was in a funk so bad that music no longer felt like my passion, and I attempted to fill the void with other things. Like filling my schedule with work, then more work, and more work, not leaving any time to find hobbies, grow in my passions, and follow my dreams.

My obstacles during my teen years that came in between myself and my dreams were often miniscule. However, adult issues like college, working in the real world, the early adult depression you get when you’re on your own that no one tells you about, and relationships; oh relationships. All of these things and my new experiences here in LA inspire the lyrics behind my music.

We’d love to hear more about your work and what you are currently focused on. What else should we know?
As a little girl, I was inspired by the beautiful voices of Whitney Houston, Mariah Carey, Tamia, Beyonce and more. Singing “Greatest Love of All” with my mom was one of my favorite pass times, over the course of my elementary school years, that was always my go to talent show song. Having older siblings, I heard more 90’s, and early 2000’s R&B music in my house from Joe, to Mya, Blackstreet, 112, SWV, Xscape, etc… I loved the sound so much that I wanted to sing like those singers, make music like that. As I grew older, the type of music being made strayed away from that sound, and continues to stray away. For me, when I listen to music from then, I think of simpler times, baggy clothes, jersey dresses, all types of nostalgia. So although most music being made does not have that sound anymore, till this day that is STILL the type of music I wanted to make. When people listen to my music, I want them to feel those 90’s and early 2000’s vibes that we used to loves as kids/teens.

How do you think the industry will change over the next decade?
Cycles always repeat themselves in the largest or smallest ways. From clothing trends to games, music, etc. There was the trap era of music, the drill era of music. Over the next 5-10 years, I see the music industry shifting into an era of more feel good music. Trapsoul is a genre of R&B that is starting to take over from Summer walker to Bryson Tiller. This is the shift that I want to see in the industry, and it is the shift I want to be apart of.

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Image Credit:

Kasey Stokes, Ronald Charles.

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