Omari Shakir has been an infamous fixture in both Atlanta and Toronto’s rap scenes, and his moment has finally come.
Born in Ottawa, Canada, Omari moved to Atlanta, Georgia by the age of three. Before moving south his introduction to rap was unorthodox. His father and uncle were on the management team for an ambitious local rapper at the time – ‘Tom Green’.
A quiet, yet attentive and intelligent child, Omari grew up surrounded by relatives that immersed him with music industry stories and black American culture. When asked, he proudly speaks of his high school, Booker T. Washington, which was the first public school for African Americans in Georgia. Booker T. Washington High School also counts Lena Horne, Martin Luther King Jr., Young Thug, and Lil Baby as fellow alumni.
After high school, Omari moved to Toronto for college. During this time, he and a group of friends formed a music collective that became known as XO. The crew spawned a cult-like following and ultimately The Weeknd. Though they would go their separate ways, Omari’s unique style, and personality propelled him forward as he balanced life between notoriety in Toronto and Atlanta’s rap scene.
Fans know Omari Shakir as a standout collaborator with everyone from Key!, Reese LaFlare, FKI 1st, to Sonny Digital. Omari effortlessly switches flows from a gritty whisper to bouncy melodies in the same song.
In 2019, Omari was shot in a drive-by shooting unintended for him. Grateful to be alive, he has dedicated himself to completing his debut album, while preparing for the release of “No Smoke” – an upcoming single, featured in Netflix’s “Audible” scheduled for release in April 2021. The song is both an ode to his time in Toronto and also a statement that he’s ready to take the spotlight.