Get Up On This With Jensen Karp: Omar Apollo

Every Thursday morning Jensen Karp gets us up on something new

April 11, 2019

Every Thursday morning Jensen Karp brings our attention to something that we may not know about yet or something we may have overlooked in the past.

Now it's time to "Get Up On This."

This week, Jensen introduces us to a first generation American singer named Omar Apollo. He’s the youngest born to Mexican parents who fled from gang violence in Guadalajara Mexico in 1992. In 2009, his family, who ran a taco stand in Indiana, became U.S. citizens and now the 21-year-old is one of Jensen’s favorite up and coming singers. He’s making a living in music and helping to support the family that did everything they could to create a better life for him. This is the American Dream.

He now lives in Los Angeles and just released his second EP, Friends. It’s inspired by a childhood in which he was raised on music from Sly & The Family Stone, Vicente Fernandez, The Beatles and a wide range of other artists. It’s part of the reason why Omar Apollo is such a genre-bending artist himself.

Let’s start by listening to the song Kickback. You can hear a little bit of pop, a bit of R&B Miguel and maybe even some Raphael Saadiq influence in it.

He’s completely self-taught, both with singing and playing guitar, which is extremely impressive. He learned chords and how to play tracks on a guitar he received as a gift, by watching YouTube tutorials of Camp Rock songs at 12-years old.

This track is off of his first EP Stereo, from 2018. It's called Erase.

Here's another song called Ashamed from his EP, Friends.

If you like Omar Apollo as much as Jensen does, you could see him on tour right now in most major cities. He’ll be here in Los Angeles at the El Rey on May 2nd and 3rd. Go support this amazing example of a legally naturalized U.S. citizen, whose parents not only created their own business in the United States, but now raised a creatively dynamic son who is contributing positively to society.