T-Ran Gilbert (born Terran Jerrell Gilbert; December 7, 1984) is an American contemporary Christian recording artist, songwriter and producer. He has shared the stage with Grammy and Dove Award-winning Christian band Casting Crowns, and Christian artist Steven Curtis Chapman; Grammy Award-winning country pop singer Shania Twain and Christian artist Kirk Franklin; Dove Award-winning Christian artists Chris Tomlin and Natalie Grant; Grammy-nominated R&B artists Freddie Jackson, Anthony Hamilton and Christian hip-hop group GRITS; and Christian rock band Building 429, R&B singer Lyfe Jennings and rapper Gorilla Zoe. He also was featured on Grammy and Dove Award-winning urban contemporary recording artist TobyMac album, Hip Hope Hits 2009 . T-Ran established the multifaceted organization 22Visionz in 1996 at the age of 12. He has sold and donated thousands of EPs across the country and has touched thousands in communities nationwide.
Earl Life and CareerEdit
T-Ran was born December 7, 1984, the third of six children to a working-class family, in Chattanooga, Tennessee. His father is Russell Gilbert Sr., a city of Chattanooga councilman and hospital director; and Terri Gilbert works with the mentally challenged. He had an older sister, Sherree, who died at birth. T-Ran has three sisters: Skieree and twins Gabrielle and Whitney; and brother, Russell Jr.
Music always has uplifted T-Ran, even at 4 years old when he picked up his first microphone. Secular and gospel music were the source for T-Ran’s motivation as a singer at age 9. T-Ran first joined the youth church choir at a local church at age 12. He became music director at age 13 but was criticized for his musical style of gospel and R&B infusion. The same year he showcased his talent at a Gospel Star Search. It was during this time that he decided to sing professionally. By age 14, he had appeared on the Babbie Mason Show in Atlanta.
T-Ran attended the Chattanooga High School Center for Creative Arts from 1999 to 2002 and studied under Alan Ledford in a musical troupe called The Choo Choo Kids. Under his direction, T-Ran honed his performance skills and stage presence. He toured Germany in 2001 with this group. During his junior year T-Ran witnessed a girl being sexually assaulted by seven boys who attended school with him. T-Ran was the designated lookout but decided against it and walked away. The boys were caught and the girl was saved; however, members of the group attacked T-Ran the next day. “Because of things like that, I can now minister to all the hurting men and women around the world,” he said.
T-Ran has performed twice at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga’s arena: during an SEC Women’s Tournament and singing backup for Shania Twain as she sang, “God Bless the Child.” Singing before thousands on the riverfront at his hometown’s annual Riverbend Festival was a dream that became reality. At this age T-Ran performed on one of the smallest stages during the afternoons. Now, he is headlining one of the largest stages during prime time at the music festival. He also has performed at Christian music festival J-Fest and during the Angels in Flight Inc. annual pro-football camp, his parents’ non-profit organization.
T-Ran graduated from high school in 2002 and enrolled at Lee University, a Christian, liberal arts institution in Cleveland, Tennessee. By age 19, T-Ran had opened a concert for R&B crooner Freddie Jackson. He majored in communications with a marketing concentration.
His debut album, T-Ran: Live And Not Die , is set for release soon and is receiving airplay worldwide and on satellite radio in the United States. He has land his first single, “Miracles,” on iTunes under the name T-Ran & 22Visionz.
“Miracles” was written as a testimony to God’s faithfulness in delivering his older brother, Russell Jr., from a life-threatening illness. While performing in Atlanta, T-Ran received a call that his brother’s blood sugar level had skyrocketed to 988 (a blood sugar level of 300 or higher is a serious, potentially life-threatening circumstance) and was admitted to a hospital. By the time T-Ran arrived, his brother was upright and talkative. Computed tomography scans were run twice while Russell Jr. was in that state; however, he was released from the hospital only after a two-day stay.
The name, 22Visionz, is derived from , which says, “A good name is rather to be chosen than great riches, and loving favor rather than silver and gold.” The organization is a movement that is touching thousands of communities worldwide. Passionate about people and the word of God, T-Ran believes that his unique ministry is a calling from God.