Excerpt from Urban Network's, "On The Come Up":
Yvette Binns-Clark and Genre Records
In 2004, Yvette Binns-Clark launched a record label based in Scottsdale, Arizona, called Genre Records. She had high hopes and all the excitement of a teenager on her first paying job. Yvette had something else, too, a real sense of just what she was in for.
Strong, opinionated, and compassionate, almost to a fault, Yvette had strong financial backing, well-wishing friends and family, and was ready to take the industry by storm. That same year, Genre Records released its first project by Donnie Edwards. A Neo-Soul artist that was getting a fair amount of airplay and selling units in the Southern markets.
It’s the middle of summer in Phoenix, Arizona, and the temperature is rising. Mrs. Yvette Binns-Clark, President and CEO of Genre Records, and her staff are working up a sweat putting the final touches on their highly anticipated upcoming release in October, 2017. The aptly titled “The Heat, Volume I”, is a 16-song compilation, with national distribution, that features an impressive collection of the baddest R&B tunes and the hottest club bangers from independent all-stars representing the entire nation.
Promising to have “something for everybody”, this compilation is expected to take the music industry by “desert” storm. So, I ask myself again. How does a small label make big things happen? I reached out to the source to find out how.
Over the past few years, I’ve enjoyed your previous releases and have been impressed with your growth. What’s your secret?
I’m very passionate about the music and love the work I do. After downsizing, we now have one exclusive artist on the roster, DeWayne McCoy, whose single “It’s Real” is included on the compilation…I keep a small staff and owe it all to my dream team (Larry B. Binns, Arthur Mitchell, Kevin Briscoe, Mel Brown, David Clark, Lisa Webster).
What is your process for finding new music?
Well, the music business has changed. Music is submitted daily for us to review. But, I’m always listening. Every time I find something I like, I have a listening party. And this year, the songs that got the greatest responses were the ones chosen for the compilation.
"The Heat" features Raz B, of the multi-platinum selling group, B2K and his first Independent single, “Fire”. A mid-tempo infectious groove with melodic guitar licks, the song was co-written by Michael Winans of the legendary gospel family, the Winans.
I must say this one is for the ladies. But, I wanted to find out from Razz himself, where he stood with his new independent status as he embarked on a solo career.
You’ve had an extraordinary start in this business. How does it feel to make the switch?
As an artist on my own independent label, it is awesome having my first single “Fire” debut on the BillBoard charts at #2.
That is awesome. What attracted you to this project?
I think it is a good look and a great opportunity to be working with another emerging company like Genre Records. And having “Fire” on The Heat compilation, only makes sense.
"The Heat", also features award-winning San Diego based Deep Rooted. Made up of Mr. Brady, Johaz, Brea and DJ Artistic, this hip-hop/soul band has performed with the likes of The Roots, Common, and Lupe Fiasco, just to name a few. With its perfect blend of melodies and lyrical styles reminiscent of the early nineties, their single “Celebrate” is one for the party.
Also noted as one of the top unsigned bands in Southern, California, I decided to chat with the group’s DJ Artistic about their experiences.
You’ve been on the scene for nearly ten years now. What drew you to this project?
There are so many other great artists with such great material also featured on The Heat, that we are very excited and truly blessed to a part of this project.
What has been your experience working so closely with another independent label like Genre?
Well, Genre Records really cares about the artists and are doing a fantastic job marketing and promoting The Heat. From the IAP to the ringtones, they really know how to position you to take you to the next level.
With everyone’s input, a clearer picture was taking shape. But, I wanted to hear from one more artist, Mix-Tape king and radio personality, DJ Cochise of Cleveland, Ohio. Known for his “After 6 Mix” and “Old School at Noon” shows, he is also making a name for himself as a producer with his latest internet chart topping single “Big Thangz”.
You’ve done quite a bit in your career. How does it feel to be a part of The Heat?
I am honored to be working with other great independent artists that are making a splash on the music scene.
You all are doing big “thangz” with this compilation. What is different about this track?
“Big Thangz” is a hard-hitting hip-hop reggae hit that features rappers, Mr. Thorobred and Willpow that is sure to please the crowd.
Just like the others, the optimism DJ Cochise has for The Heat is necessary for its success. And, it is a true testament of the times. Artists with material for all audiences coming together on their own terms on a project of this measure, is truly monumental.
DeWayne McCoy, Breathe, Trueful, Blacc Wolf Cartel and others are also featured on the compilation. The label is working radio now, and has gotten a great initial response from DJ pools and program directors across the country. Scheduled for an October release date, “The Heat” will be available in a store near you and on-line at iTunes and other major retailers.
What’s next for Genre Records? According to Mrs. Binns-Clark, the company is “moving in a more positive direction” and preparing for their future releases, "The Heat, Volumes II-IV", a Genre-style Christmas Compilation CD and a Pop, Alternative Rock, and Jazz Compilation.
So, what does it take for a label to remain HOT in this ever-changing business of music? A passionate team along with great artists that feverishly work together to bring the public what they want - "The HEAT.”
New Release By: "Syrie"
Syrie Is Now On Spotify!
The Heat, Vol. I
New: Mobile App!
The new and convenient Genre Records Mobile App for Androids and IOS can be downloaded here. To download and install on Android devices, Click Here. For iPhones and iPads, Click Here. Be sure to adjust your "Settings" on your device under "Security" to allow for installation of apps from "Unknown Sources". It is safe, just a warning to monopolize the app market by Play Store and iTunes in a deal with manufacturers.