Omar

London born Omar MBE first came to prominence on the growing underground dance scene of the late 1980’s, while signed to his own father’s record label, Kongo Records…

After growing up and going to school in Canterbury, Kent he became a classically trained musician and singer, his career finally burst into life with his 1990 LP ‘Nothing Like This’, which spurned the seminal neo-soul single of the same name.

A year later after signing to Gilles Peterson‘s prestigious Talkin’Loud label, both album and single were released once more and climbed respectfully into the UK Top 20.

After his second album ‘Music’, Omar moved to RCA Records and between 1994 and 1997 released another brace of albums, enjoying four more hit singles including ‘Say Nothin’ and a cover of The Stranglers‘ ‘Golden Brown’. Omar also collaborated with the esteemed likes of Stevie Wonder, Lamont Dozier, Leon Ware & Derrick Bramble from Heatwave during this time.

Since 2001 the award winning singer/songwriter has put out another more three long players ‘Best By Far’, ‘Sing (If You Want It)’ – re-released in 2011 on Brighton imprint Tru Thoughts – and his last in 2013 ‘The Man’ on Freestyle Records.

Omar has toured America several times, reaching out to the massive hidden support that he’d always known was across the pond. He’s also toured the Far-East with a UK all-star package put together by Incognito’s Bluey Maunick, a venture that brought him to audiences he wasn’t even aware had heard of him – 10,000 Indonesians singing back “There’s Nothing Like This!” to him soon put him right on that score.

In 2012 he was appointed a Member of the Order of the British Empire (MBE) in the Queen’s Birthday Honours, for his services to music.

Omar singing live on stage at Summer Soulstice 2016. Photo by Jenny B © Summer Soulstice Ltd.

More recently he appeared on the Javone Prince Show on BBC2, playing a straight faced house band frontman and whose musical contribution and responses to comic Javone, were a highlight of the show each week. He’s also one fifth of The British Collective, alongside Don-E, Junior Giscombe, Leee John & Noel McKoyan outstanding line-up, who have sold millions of records between them and are indeed torch bearers of British Soul Music.

Omar’s main stage performance at Summer Soulstice in 2016 was a different class and is a very fine addition to our Hall Of Fame.

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