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Jneiro Jarel

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Biography

Born in Brooklyn as Omar Jarel Gilyard, future producer/MC Jneiro Jarel spent the early part of his childhood moving around the country due to his mother's job in the U.S. Army, before finally settling down in Houston, TX, in 1985. It was there that Gilyard began performing, both as a solo artist and with his group the Slam Kids, which he started in 1994. In 1998 he decided to move to New York to further pursue his career and, officially changing his name to Jneiro Jarel, began to gain some notoriety as a rapper, enough to get the attention of Public Enemy producer Hank Shocklee, who arranged for Jarel to open for Julie Dexter and Lord Finesse. Eager to record his own material and unhappy with the progress with Shocklee, Jarel decided to work with independent labels instead, and in 2000 he released his album Section A on Orienj Recordings. In 2004 he moved to Philadelphia, where he worked with some of the city's most influential hip-hop artists (Rich Medina and King Britt) and began to develop himself more as a producer, collaborating with Jazzanova and Count Bass D, among others. In 2005 Jarel released three albums, Three Piece Puzzle, on Kindred Spirits, Beat Journey, under the name Dr. Who Dat?, and the DJ mix Houston We Got a Solution, both of which were issued by his own Label Who? (which also re-released a U.S. version of Three Piece Puzzle in collaboration with Rope-a-Dope). London-based Lex Records then reissued Beat Journey in the summer of 2006. ~ Marisa Brown
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