Omar Wilson
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Omar Wilson

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The best kept secret in music

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"Omar Wilson"

On behalf of the entire staff at iSkin Inc I would like to extend my personal thanks to you and your incredibly talented artist Omar Wilson for submitting two wxcellent tracks now included on the Reveal Music Group Compilation. Omar is the only artist that has two tracks on the disk due to his unique ability to cross genres in regards to his song writing. The initial numbers for the promotional compilation is 50K and will be included with iSkin's latest product for the iPod shuffle, we expect to ship over 200K within the next 3 months. The exposure will futher compounded by a website featuring artist bios, clips and a direct link to an artist website for additional information. We recognize talent and I am looking forward to hearing Omar's future projects, looking forward to other possible future projects.


Thank you,


Rishi Persaud
VP Corporate Affairs
www.iskin.com - iSkin


"Norwalk singer focuses on the positive"

NORWALK – Listening to the lyrics of Omar Rahsaan Wilson’s song “Find a way,” you can almost picture a young, confused Omar walking the streets of his neighborhood trying to fit in with the other teens on the block, doing things he wasn’t proud of but not really sure of another way.
“Pops was a hustler … Mom stayed home with us. I took to the streets way too young, y’all, There’s no one I can trust. I see the pain in people’s faces, at different times and different places.”
Then if you change tracks to “Shinnin’,” you can see an older Omar, walking the same streets but with his head bowed down this time, whispering a silent prayer to himself as he walks by the dealers’ corners he used to stand on with the people he used to roll with:
“I came from the bottom to the top. Raised by the n—that ran the block. The streets they are so cold. They say don’t let it steal your souls. I used the gift I was given to make a livin’. I sing for those who are locked in prison.”
Wilson’s past - the neighborhood he grew up in, the people he hung out with, the mistakes he made – are all a part of Wilson, the artist who has turned these influences into music that he hopes will affect his environment as much as his environment has affected him.
Wilson, 25, grew up at St. Paul’s Terrace, a Housing and Urban Development complex on Martin Luther King Drive. Wilson discovered rap music when he was 15 and began writing his own songs.
His songs are about what he knows, which gives him and his music credibility. He attended Norwalk High School for 1 ½ years before being sent to J.M. Wright Regional Vocational-Technical School in Stamford. He became a father at 17 when his daughter, Asia, was born.
During that time, Wilson got in trouble and watched people around him doing drugs, getting shot and going to jail.
“I’ve been homeless. I’ve been hungry,” Wilson said. “When people listen to my music, they know that I understand what they’re going through because I’ve been there. I sing about what I know.”
Wilson is not a conventional rapper. He doesn’t fit into the modern rap, gangster rap or urban underground categories. Wilson focuses on the positive rather then berating society for the negatives, and he doesn’t glorify violence, sex or crime.
“I think people appreciate it when you write songs about things they can relate to, and there is a lot more to life then that,” Wilson said. “Yes, I rap about the perls of life on the streets, but I also rap about relationships, Friendship, emotions, learning to love yourself.”
Wilson’s lyrics are different. They don’t sound like they’re being fired out of a machine gun or attempting to pummel their message into their listeners. Wilson is mellow and gets a point across through the strength of his voice, not the heavy sound of his beats. His songs progress at a moderate rhythm, giving the listener a chance to appreciate what they are hearing.
Another point that differentiates Wilson from the Jay-z, Ja Rule, DMX of the world. He brings the influences of R&B, HipHop and jazz together in his music to crate a hybrid style that doesn’t quite sound like anything else out there. He calls it B&R: Blues and Rap.
“I feel confident that my style is different, and I think people of all ages will attest to that,” Wilson said. “I play at clubs like Club Speed in the city and get a good response there, and then I sing in a gospel festival and have a 77-year-old woman thank me for my music. You can’t beat that.”
His newest EP “Product of my Environment” is a snapshot of the life Wilson has led and all that has influenced it. Wilson describes himself as a product of his environment, and its hard to tell which has influenced which more, but he is hoping that whatever mark his music leaves will be a positive one.
“No matter where kids are or what kind of lives they lead, they are all affected by music,” Wilson said. “I hate the deterioration of the youth in our society, and I hope that maybe if they see me, see where I came from, then maybe they’ll believe that life can offer you a lot if your willing to focus and work hard for it.”
Wilson has worked hard for recognition and he has been rewarded for it. He was nominated for Artist of the Year in 2004 for the Underground Music Awards and this year will receive the Unsigned Artist of the Year Award.
Wilson’s song “Find a Way” will also be recorded on iPods coming out this November. In the meantime, Wilson will continue to play clubs throughout New York and Connecticut, waiting for his break to come.
But no matter who signs up or what stations play his music, Wilson will always know who he is and where he came from. As he says in his song ‘Mr. Survival”:
“I’m a warrior, the heart and soul, Life made me a man. I’ve been sent to help you through the day when the skies are gray. I cannot be stopped no how, no way”.
-Jill Bodach-
- The Hour


"R&B SPOTLIGHT"

First of all, can you give everyone some background info as to who Omar is?
Well, I was born in Norwalk, CT. I started my musical voyage in church. I sang in the youth choir and did solos whenever the opportunities arise. As I started to cultivate my style by entering street ciphers and writing heavily. Soon after that I joined a rap group called Lost Souls. I moved to N.C. to record our album ‘Soul Talk’ produced by Mike City, distributed by Ichiban International. It dropped the summer of 98’. The album got into all the stores but our marketing and promotional financing wasn’t strong enough to give the push that we needed. In 2000 one of the members of the Lost Souls and I migrated back to CT and formed a group called The Souls. We performed at numerous venues throughout CT and NY. I also wrote and sang the hooks for The Souls. One night I was listening to a NAS instrumental and I wrote a song called Life is Lethal. As time progressed I wrote and sung more songs, and it began to take prevalence over rap. The Souls decided to disband and since then I have been working hard to become the best Singer/Songwriter and performer I can be.
How would you describe your style?
Intense. I do B&R music Blues and Rap. I sing about good, the bad, and the ugly. All the things we go through I put into a song.
Who inspired you to want to pick up a mic and sing?
That’s hard to say because it wasn’t just one person. It was a collective effort of inspiration. Everything from 2-Pac to Lauryn Hill and too many more to name helped me become who I am.
It sounds as if your beats were tailor made for you, who does your production?
Nomad of Nomadic Track Beats, Mike City of UnSung Entertainment and DJ Hot Shit of 9 to 5 Entertainment.
What is your opinion of the current state of R&B?
I am very pleased with the mind state of R&B. I’m just in to add my flavor to the movement
As it relates to the music game, what has been the best advise you’ve received this far?
As put by LL COOL J, patience, hard work, and dedication equals success.
You have a real strong stage presence. How do you prepare your performances?
First I say a prayer, then I just focus on the opportunities I am blessed to have. And I give everything that I have in my heart.
Where do you see yourself in five years?
Wherever GOD wants me to be.
What do you want people to think when they hear the name Omar?
Eternal
Is there anything else you would want us to know about Omar that we have not covered?
I have a new website (http://www.owilson.com) that will be launched the second week in March. Here the masses will be able to keep in contact with me, download songs and get all the information about who and what I am. I am also shopping my demo The Product and plan to drop my album in early April. I will still be hitting the streets of CT and New York singing at whatever venues will have me. And I just want everyone to know that I sing and write about what people deserve…good music.
Any Shoutouts?
First and foremost I would like to thank the almighty GOD and I like to send a special thanks to all the people that helped me through my struggle. Jeff Chacua, Rai Engel, J-Hatch, and the Inasrkl Music Group, Jesse Jess of 91.9 Promo Radio, Jean Augustin, No Mystery Studios, Star Link Entertainment, Mental Supreme, Maria Davis, Chris and Cathy Cofoni, Rich Ahlers, Big Troc, Mike Herry, Jason Roth, Sweets and Dolo, The Souls, Jeff Baldwin, Big Mo Choi, Kultjah, Mark Bush, Damon Daye, Dylan Ely, the Wilson Family, and all the people that support and continue to pray for Omar’s success.
- Rap Fanatic Magazine


"DIGITAL AUDIO / UNSIGNED ARTIST OF DA MONTH"

His name is Omar Rahsaan Wilson. Born in Norwalk, Connecticut, he started singing, like most other people, when he was a kid “My mother kept me in church”’ he says. That’s where he got the nerve to sing”. Professing, “I was ALWAYS loud”. Omar looks back at how he got started. “When I was about 7…8…9 years old, you could always hear me above the crowd. They asked me to sing a lead one day for church. I started singing, got half way through the song and noticed everyone was crying. That was the beginning of my realization that there was something special about me.
This artist’s rap career started around 16 or 17. Here was a skill he honed and got exceptionally good at. “I started jumping in ciphers, killin’ cats 3 or 4 at a time”. Omar relocated to Durham, North Carolina to join a group his cousins had formed called The Souls. At the time they had a project in the works called “Soul Talk”.
Following his effort with the Lost Souls, Omar and a cousin formed a group called The Souls. At that point, he went back to Connecticut. Not for nothing, he noticed that he was getting more attention as a singer as opposed to rap. At this point, he was trying to figure out who he was in the singing world. “I realized I was not the regular R&B singer”, states Mr. Wilson.
As an artist, he believes he is evolving. He sings about life: the good the bad the ugly and everything around it. He puts true feeling into everything he does. He makes you think. Omar confesses, he has something to bring to the table that will inspire those that come after him. His style is distinctive, referred to as B&R (Blues and Rap).
His mission has been on the streets of New York. His job has been hitting the largest and the smallest of venues. This man puts his money where his mouth is. He says the respect factor is something that can NOT be equaled.
“I try to get out to as many of the masses (of people) as I possibly can”. Omar is nominated for R&B Artist of the Year for the 2nd Annual Underground Music Awards. He is in the middle of putting out his new project; “the name is under wraps till it drops”. The listener is in for a surprise. He is looking to hit the labels hard. “My music is for everyone that will listen”, he proclaims. Now is the time for execution. It is time to show the world what Omar Rahsaan Wilson has to offer.
- Street Mos' Magazine


"Street poet finds rhymes in reality"

Norwalk – To Omar Rahsaan Wilson, there has always been a special rhyme and reason to his life. Now, he gets to share that rhyme and reason with the world.
Wilson was born in Norwalk and raised in St. Paul’s Terrace, a housing complex on Martin Luther King Drive.
The rhyme of Wilson’s life began when he was 6 and he realized for the first time that he had a musical gift. “I grew up singing in my local Baptist church in the choir”, Wilson said. “When I sang solo gospel numbers, I would see adults in the audience crying. As a kid I didn’t understand what was happening or why my voice was affecting people that way”.
Music continued to play an influence in Wilson’s life as he was influenced by various artist he heard on the radio. When he was 15, he discovered rap music and began to write his own songs.
“Everyone was doing rap and I got really good at it,” Wilson said. “I got into competitions with other rappers and I started to win because I was bringing something to the table that no else had.”
What Wilson brought to the table was diversity. He is not only a talented rapper, but he also happens to have the soulful voice of an R&B artist and a jazz and blues sound that sets him apart from most young performers on the airwaves today.
And that is how Wilson likes it.
“My background is rap but once I learned I could sing as well I didn’t want to limit myself to one particular genre,” Wilson explained. “So I sing, I rap, I do blues, I do jazz. I think the best way to describe me as an artist is to call me a street poet.”
His message is also not what is typical of rap music.
“I don’t rap or sing about cars and money and women,” Wilson said. “I sing about life. I’m here to be a voice for the people and what they are going through in their lives. I’m here to tell real stories about real people, not some fantasized view of life.”
The street poet made the decision to take his show on the road and away from the tri-state area when he was 17. Wilson’s cousins in Durham, N.C., had a rap group called “Lost Souls” and they wanted Wilson to be a part of it.
“Lost Souls” had a brief opportunity to taste success when they generated two albums, “Soul Talk” and “Life is Life” distributed by Ichiban Entertainment.
Mike City, now a well-known songwriter and producer who has worked with artists including Brandy, Usher, and Sunshine Anderson, produced the “Lost Souls” albums.
Before they had time to work on a third album, Wilson’s oldest cousin suffered a severe neck injury which kept him away from the mic.
Wilson and his other cousin formed a new group called “The Souls” and continued to perform. At the same time, Wilson discovered that not only could he sing and rap, he could write as well, and after a short time he had written 10 songs.
Wilson kept in touch with “Lost Souls” producer Mike City and contacted him with his songs. City was impressed and invited Wilson to Los Angeles to put together an album.
With the album almost completed, Wilson is hoping to get signed to a record label. Once that is done, the reason in Wilson’s life will become more apparent.
“I feel like I know my place now,” Wilson said. “I know what I was put here to do and now it’s just a matter of finding someone at a record company who believes in me like Mike does and like I do.
Even if it takes a while for Wilson to really make it, he already feels like he’s accomplished something.
“When this opportunity came up for me I had to leave my family and my baby daughter behind to follow a dream,” Wilson said. “I always believed that if you put your mind to something, you will succeed. It was a hard thing to do, but at least when I’m 30 or 40 I won’t look back and feel regret that I didn’t give it a shot.”
-JILL BODACH-
Hour Staff Writer
- The Hour


"Aspiring Norwalk singer looks to put the blues back in R&B"

Norwalk – Omar Rahsaan Wilson is headed for the West Coast, where he’ll be looking for some “California Love” from Dre.
A Norwalk musician hoping to sign with a major label, Wilson will likely visit Los Angeles next month to record a couple more tracks for his demo album with multi-platinum producer Mike City.
Omar plans to then meet with executives from Dre’s Aftermath Records, including the hip-hop super producer himself. (For the uninitiated, Dre performed the 1995 smash “California Love” with 2Pac).
Though Wilson is still up-and-coming, he has already achieved single-name status, performing simply as “Omar.” Labeling his music style is a bit more complicated.
“He’s a street poet – that’s what he is,” said Raimund Engel, who grew up in Norwalk with Omar and is helping to get his career off the ground.
Omar is an R&B singer, but prefers the self-invented term “B&R.” The inversion is meant to differentiate his often gritty lyrics from those of other R&B singers, who seem to have forgotten the second half of the phrase “rhythm and blues,” he said
During an interview at Fat Cat Pie Co., Omar said his contemporaries don’t seem to know any emotion but love. To illustrate his point, he spontaneously belted out the titular line from Mario Winans’ recent heartache hit “I Don’t Wanna Know.”
After the mocking rendition, Omar declared dismissively: “Naw, cuz.”
He prefers to tackle a broader spectrum of issues instead of focusing solely on romantic fervor.
On “Walkin’ Through the Ghetto” – one of five tracks on a demo CD titled “From Da Soul” – he describes an urban streetscape and sings “So many souls, they’re livin’ in the ghetto/ Workin’ herd to stay alive.” His song “Find a Way” includes the lyrics “I took to the streets way too young, y’all/ There’s no one I can trust.”
“I do music, man,” Omar said, sitting across the table from Engel.
Stark realism aside, Omar wants it known that he also has an eye for the ladies and enjoys partying. Some of Omar’s music deals with love – such as “Meant to Be,” a valentine on which he croons “Starin’ out my window, only one star in the sky/ That’s how I feel about my girl.” But he is adamant there is more than one emotion worth singing about.
Given his varied subject matter, perhaps it should come as no surprise that Omar compares himself to musical acts as disparate as 2Pac, Nate Dogg, the dean of gangsta R&B singers; the rock/rap group Linkin Park; and 1970’s soulster Curtis Mayfield.
Omar, whose official entertainment age is 25, lived on St. Paul’s Terrace while growing up in Norwalk. His mother was a model in the 1970s, while his father emceed at nightclubs in Stamford and New Rochelle, NY, and had a band called the Soul Messengers. His parents remain Norwalk residents, as do Omar’s girlfriend and their two children.
Omar said he first recognized his talent while singing as a youth in the choir at Norwalk’s Calvary Baptist Church, where the congregation would react to his voice with strong emotion. He used to rap on the streets of Norwalk, Stamford and Bridgeport, performing for whomever was around and getting into informal competitions with other amateur hip-hoppers.
After attending Norwalk High School for 1 ½ years,
he jokes he was “extradited” to J.M. Wright Regional Vocational-Technical School in Stamford. He had a daughter by age 17 and dropped out after two years.
“Then came the school of hard knocks – bumps, bruises and scrapes and struggle,” he said with a laugh.
Omar said he was getting into trouble locally and lacked direction. Meanwhile, he said people around him were being jailed or shot, or becoming strung out. He felt the only way to give his daughter the life she deserves was to move to North Carolina and start a rap career.
“O-Dog” as he was then known, joined his cousins’ Tar Heel state rap group, Lost Souls, returning to Norwalk for visits when he had money. Lost Souls recorded an album with Mike City, “Soul Talk,” which Ichiban Records released in 1997. A little-known R&B singer named Sunshine Anderson sang some of the hooks.
Lost Souls made a second album but disbanded before it was released when one of the cousins experienced a health problem. Around 2000, Omar returned to Norwalk, where he and another Lost Souls member formed an offshoot group called The Souls.
Meanwhile, Mike City – who has since relocated to Los Angeles – began producing major acts such as Brandy and Usher. Anderson became a star with “Heard It All Before,” which received heavy radio play in 2001. Omar hopes to collaborate with her again soon.
Though he still raps, Omar – who sang hooks with The Souls – began focusing on R&B about a year ago, a move he and Engel said has been well received. Sometimes Omar even raps and sings on the same track. He has also sung hooks for other artist, including rapper Grand Puba of Brand Nubian fame.
Omar and Engel – a fitness consultant and amateur rapper – formed a company with Stamford resident Jeff Chacua called Souls Enterprises, which promotes Omar’s career and deals with other facets of the entertainment industry.
Engel said he feels things are starting to happen for Omar, who performs in New York City regularly and last month won a Manhattan R&B competition judged by influential music industry players. After pounding the pavement, Engel said people interested in Omar are now approaching them; incoming cell phones calls frequently interrupted them at Fat Cat.
“Now we can’t stop the phone calls,” Engel said. “So to see the tables turn, it’s a sign of progression.”
Eyeing stardom, Omar said he wants to inspire pride among Connecticut residents in the same way rappers Jay-Z and Nas represent Brooklyn and Queensbridge, N.Y., respectively.
“They’ve never had someone that they could be like, “Yo – that’s Connecticut!” Omar said.
Engel is on a mission to introduce the world to Omar’s unique brand of “B&R” Music these days is too gimmicky, not sincere, Engel said, and image seems more important than substance. He feels people need to hear Omar’s message.
“I am bringing music…that’s going to be gin a movement,” Omar said. “And the movement is survival, man – that’s the movement.”
-Matt Breslow-
Staff Writer
- The Advocate


"Music with a message ...... Norwalk hip-hop artist sees star rising"

Audience members trained camera phones and video recorders on Guru as the hip-hop legend appeared, emanating star power, to start a recent SoNo show.
Hands filled the air and the crowd bounced as the former Gangstarr emcee performed like a seasoned pro. People stared, rapt, even when the old-school master rhymed acapella.
But if Guru ruled the stage at Gasoline, the Washington Street hotspot clearly belonged to Norwalk’s Omar Rahsaan Wilson, judging from the ubiquity of T-shirts bearing his image.
Opening for Guru, Wilson – an unsigned hip-hop singer with an independent record label – flashed his own entertaining skills, performing with poise and passion. Even Guru hailed Wilson, who performs under his first name only, at the start of the headliner’s set, calling him “My man Omar.”
Shortly before Wilson took the stage, a stretch Excursion limousine dropped off passengers outside Gasoline, where a black GMC Yukon and a Chrysler 300 outfitted to resemble a Bentley parked by the entrance.
The club was a starkly different from one Wilson played earlier in the year – the type where the audience members arrive in another kind of stretch vehicle, usually painted yellow and equipped with a “stop” sign on the driver’s side.
Wilson, a father of two, sang at a Black History Month program at Turn of River Middle School in Stamford.
The disparity between the two venues is consistent with what Wilson and Rai Engel – his longtime friend and co-founder with Jeff Chacua of Noble Records, their independent label – call “the movement.”
While working hard toward music industry success, Wilson prides himself on adhering to his principles. He recorded a demo in California in 2004, but was told he had to sing music he considered “comical” and “ignorant.”
“Baby, your a— is phat. Shoot’em up!” he says in an interview, mocking the themes he was told to sing about.
Wilson says he felt he was viewed as a product and says he heard he could sell 2 million to 3 million records. He understands the music industry is a business, he says, but artists who stand the test of time know people are more important than money.
“You didn’t see that I might be able to save three million (people) – inspired three million,” Wilson says, referring to California experience.
He refused to sing music he couldn’t be proud of and returned to Connecticut. Wilson likens himself to a “pinpoint of light” in darkness the world has created, and says he knows his purpose and goal.
“My mission is to sing to the people that need it most, you know?” he says. “And that’s really the lost souls.”
Lost Souls was an erstwhile rap group Wilson belonged to several years ago. Today, the term can apply to anyone, Wilson says. Everyone has been, at some point, a lost soul, seeking truth and true people to share one’s feelings with, he says. Wilson is acutely aware of the effect music has on children and the violence and sexuality they see in popular culture.
That’s not to say Wilson’s music is all positive.
“It’s just real,” he says.
In his quest for music –industry success, Wilson has sung hooks for major artist, worked with top producers and performs frequently. He’s played New York hotspots such as Club Exit, where he won a November showcase.
Wilson once finished his day job, then performed at three shows and gave a radio interview that night.
“I’ve hit every venue that is known to man in New York City, dude,” the charismatic performer says.
In addition to Wilson, Noble Records cultivates talent and boasts other artists. Wilson wants to sign a major record deal and create a bridge to the entertainment industry to help other artist succeed.
Wilson has begun to experience some success.
His website has received more than 30,000 unique hits in a month, Engel says. He says two of Wilson’s songs were included on a promotional compilation for the iPod Shuffle. Wilson’s mixtape, ‘Pieces of the Product,” was being sold at Gasoline along with other Noble Records paraphernalia the night of the Guru show.
That night, Wilson exuded confidence as he sang, continuously dancing, gesticulating and controlling his face into various expressions. Crowd members swayed, danced, nodded and raised hands above their heads.
They cheered as Wilson, who finished his set pouring with sweat, doffed his shirt to reveal a white tank topat one point. The end was met wit raucous cheers and applause.
Afterward, Wilson moved through the crowd, hugging, shaking hands and listening to people whose expressions and mannerisms indicated they were genuinely happy and excited for him.
Introducing a song called “He Knows,” Wilson spoke of factors that brought him to where he was, such as hard work and dedication.
“That’s what I’m talking about!” a man in the audience shouted.
- The Advocate


"Keeping It Real"

The way his lyrics come across, Norwalk's Omar Rahsaan Wilson, otherwise known as Omar, fashions himself as a kind of prophet. He's the doctor that's gonna heal a lady's unspoken pain, the voice of the incarcerated, the educator warning about drug abuse, the warrior battling for survival on the streets. An album full of positive messages may sound a little after-school special for the X-rated world of modern hip-hop and R&B, but Omar's debut six-song CD The Product is too serious to be taken lightly.
While he began singing in a Baptist church as a toddler, Omar got his stories from the streets surrounding the St. Paul's Terrace housing complex in Norwalk where he was raised. He was inducted into life's hardships early, having his first child at 17, getting into trouble at school, and moving down to North Carolina the same year to form a rap group with his cousins called The Lost Souls. When he returned to Norwalk in 2000, he and one cousin tried continuing as The Souls, but Wilson was rediscovering his singing voice and song-writing abilities. He's a storyteller at heart, or a "street poet" as he likes to say, and only the opening song on the album, "The Doctor," with its tongue-in-cheek lyrics about healing-- "Baby girl you can walk right on in / you know that I got what you're lookin' for, baby" -- resembles the sexual content that is the bread and butter of most hip-hop hits.
Instead, on "Shinnin'" with his mature, smooth, singing voice set over a beat made for cruising, punctuated with chimes, Omar sings about how he used music to overcome the seductions of drugs and crime. "The streets the are so cold, the said' don't let it steal your soul' / So I use the game I was given for a livin' -- I sing for those locked in prison." The chorus borrows from that classic William DeVaughn son "Be Thankful for What You Got," a song that's been heavily sampled and remade throughout hip-hop history. Omar twists the lyrics so "diggin' the scene with a gangsta lean" becomes "killin' the scene makin' plenty green." And while it may be clear Omar wants success, and money, he still projects a clean image -- saying he has "no time for ho's" and not filling every track with boasts of his conquests.
Those with real talent don't need delusions of grandeur, and Omar sings with sincerity. He sees the pitfalls of success, spelled out in the song "World Agaist Me," where he sings with suppressed anger and feeling about how he's been betrayed. It begins with a sad piano melody reminiscent of the intro to Lionel Richie's "Hello." Omar's voice comes pushing and lifting over a slow R&B beat as he croons, "Its hard for me to trust someone, I'm searching for some peace, but I can't find none / I am what you claim to be, is this why you hate me?"
Talking about real issues, from high school fights to girls turning tricks, and also about how he overcame those challenges, Omar's songs carry a hidden spiritual component. It may not be the stuff of mainstream music, but he's upfront about the fact that he cares, and not just about how many cars he has in his driveway.
"I'm the warrior, the heart and soul, I can feel what you feel," he singsin "Mr. Survival" over the deep, throbbing beats he favors. "Find a Way" moves like an Alicia Keys song, which is to say, like a classic soul song, with a slow rhythmic sway. And it's inspirational, too, with the message "I'm fightin' and strugglin' day by day, somehow, we'll find a way." Omar is a serious artist and a promising one. And with a flashy new website (www.OWILSON.com), representation from Norwalk's Noble Records and the right New York- area exposure, he may get the breakthrough he's looking for -- hopefully without lossing his convictions in the process.
-bbelli@fairfieldweekly.com- - The Fairfield County Weekly


Discography

"Pieces of the Product" Mixtape Vol.1
Debut Album Spring 2009

Photos

Bio

Omar's collection of emotionally charged and soulful tunes is a wonderful introduction to a singer inspired by the ebbs and flows of life and family.  His songs tackle a broader spectrum of social issues rather than solely emoting the romantic fervor commonly found in contemporary R&B. His preference to comment on life experience makes it no surprise when Omar cites artists from Donny Hathaway, Sam Cooke, David Ruffin to 2 Pac as major influences. He prefers to utilize the self-invented term "B&R". The inversion is meant to differentiate his often-gritty lyrics from those of other R&B singers who seem to have forgotten the second half of "rhythm and blues," Omar explains.   The 28-year old could perhaps credit some of his artistic sensibilities to his roots as his father emceed at nightclubs in the 1970s and was in a band called the Soul Messengers.
 
 When Omar was only seven years old, the powerful and spiritual impact of his soulful voice was evident to his audience at Calvary Baptist Church , where he sang in his hometown of Norwalk, CT. "When I sang solo gospel numbers, I would see the adults in the audience crying, just brought to tears. As a kid, I didn't understand what was happening or how my voice was having this effect on people." The remarkable evolution from a vocally gifted boy into a richly diverse singer-songwriter and arranger is the blueprint of Omar's ongoing musical journey.
 
 At the age seventeen, following a troubled period in high school while seeking direction and witnessing his peers being jailed or even worse, Omar moved to Durham, North Carolina, where he was encouraged to rap and with his three cousins, joined a group called the Lost Souls. While working with producer Mike City (Brandy, Usher), the group generated two albums, "Soul Talk" and "Life Is Life", which was distributed by Ichiban Entertainment. It was during this transition that Omar the songwriter and melody-maker was beginning to flourish, writing hooks and harmonies which brought him to his unique style of Soul and R&B that he performs today.

In 2007 Omar also was recognized as one of the winners at Amateur night at The Apollo on 3 separate occasions in making him one of the biggest winners there for the entire season! Omar has also recently won the award for Most Dynamic R&B Artist of The Year at the Underground Music Awards in 2006 & 2007. Since these wins Omar has begun touring regionally as well as recording his debut full length album. Recent notable performances would include opening for The Neville Brothers at Alive at Five in Stamford CT in front of over 5000 people as well as Boyz II Men with an estimated attendance of over 20,000 people.   
 
Reflecting on his growing career, Omar says, "I hope my singing and music will touch the deepest part of people's souls. I sing about life and what we all go through living it. I've slept on peoples' floors and lived on TV dinners but, on the flip side, I've also enjoyed working at my craft in top studios in L.A. I know it's a journey and that it takes focus and dedication. I know what I've been put on this earth to do."