#171 – JChris – Urban Latin Singer

In This Episode

JChris joins us on episode 171! Don’t miss JChris’s 54 Below show coming up on Sept. 18th!

Singer-songwriter, pianist, and producer ​Chris Urquiaga​, known as JChris, is lauded for his exciting performance energy and smooth voice. Hailed as “…the next big thing” by ​Metro Weekly​ magazine, this Latin pop virtuoso is internationally recognized for his pop compositions which are laced with Latin, Afro and Brazilian influences. His music explores themes of gender fluidity and queer culture.

Chris started playing piano at the age of 7 and started playing at churches at the age of 9. During Chris’ childhood years, his performance experiences as a soloist and with choral and instrumental ensembles brewed an interest in composition. Throughout high school and college, Chris developed a desire to tell his own story through his own music. After studying composition at the Eastman School of Music, Chris became highly active as a singer-songwriter, releasing indie pop albums under the stage name Chris Urquiaga. Chris’ desire to deepen his connection with and express his Brazilian, Peruvian and gay identity, led him a new direction. In 2020, Chris rebranded himself as an urban Latin artist under the stage name JChris. As JChris, he has already seen great success with the release of his singles. His 2021 single, Caliente (featuring major Latin artist Naldo Benny), has reached over 1 million views on YouTube. Chris’ Spotify channel has over 500,000 streams.

As a gay Latino artist, Chris had the honor of presenting his own headlining concert at Feinstein’s/54 Below in NYC entitled Latin Music Night, featuring guest artists from Broadway and Television. New York is a city that Chris has fallen in love with. In October 2021, he made his Off-Broadway debut performing his original music at the Triad Theatre for a play entitled Dig Deep. Choral music has followed Chris for most of his life, giving him experience as a conductor, composer, accompanist, guest vocalist and clinician. In 2022, Chris became the Assistant Director for Grace Chorale of Brooklyn, working with his colleague and Artistic Director, Jason Asbury.

Music education is something that Chris deeply values, as it changed his life for the better. In New York, Chris is a music teacher at the prestigious Saint Ann’s School in Brooklyn, teaching vocal and instrumental music to middle school and high school students. In 2022, Chris was the professor and curator for the Arts Conservatory For Teens’ singer-songwriter program in St. Petersburg, Florida. Chris was entrusted with the task of developing and directing the conservatory’s singer-songwriter program for its very first season.

On top of working with such incredible industry professionals, Chris shows his support for the LGBTQ+ community through his continued involvement with local organizations. Chris was selected as the featured artist to perform at the 2021 Capital Pride Walk and Rally, for thousands of spectators and distinguished guests including U.S. Vice President Kamala Harris and Washington, D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser. Chris also shows his support for the LGBTQ+ community with his own drag persona, Cara Linda. Cara Linda first made an appearance in the 2020 music video for “Ya Yo Te Olvidé” and continues to make appearances via her personal Instagram page and Chris’s TikTok.

Chris is currently composing a musical comedy about gentrification called “Mr. Manhattan!” with lyricist Jordan Silver in New York City. The musical’s protagonist, like Chris, is also of Brazilian and Peruvian descent.

Learn more about JChris at jchrisofficial.com and get tickets to his upcoming live shows at Get tickets to his upcoming live shows at jchrisofficial.com/live/.

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