There’s a lot of cats that make dope music but they’re afraid to put it out because the mass majority of people, quote unquote, won’t like it. I’m a firm believer in ‘I’m the musician so I give the consumer what they need.’
Iman Omari. That is literally all I have to say. This man right here has a sound like no other. His voice is quite mesmerizing and each song is full of delicious bass with trippy reverberation. They all seem to tell stories about love found and love lost, spirituality, growth and his lust for positive energy.
Hailing from LA, Iman Omari is a music producer, DJ, and singer. He has worked with the likes of Kendrick Lamar, Mac Miller, Ty Dolla $ign, Kent Jamz and Good Joon of OverDoz, Lil Simz, Moruf, Tiffany Gouché, Knxwledge, JaVonté, and I’m sure there are so many more artists on the way. His sound is a great fusion of samples from Jazz, Blues, and R&B artists riding over cosmic waves of tom tom, snare and bass drums. He has truly created a novel sound. Please get familiar.
Iman Omari dropped the Energy EP in 2011. This album has wonderful tracks where you can truly get lost between each eight count. Some of my favorites include: “Let Me”, “Take Away”, and “First Time”.
In 2012, Omari collaborated with New Jersey artist, Moruf, to create Euphoria. This partnership has produced great tracks, including: “Sly”, “School Daze”, and “Path”.
Omari’s LP (Vibe)rations followed in 2013. Some of my favorite tracks include: “No Stress” featuring Kent Jamz, “Prayed For” featuring Shi Wisdom and MoRuf, and “Gravitate”.
He was not afraid to keep our ears on lock. Not only did Omari put out a few mixtapes in 2013, such as Vibe Tape +++, Vibe Tape +++ 2, ESC vol. 1, and The Energy Essential Mixtape, he blessed the airwaves some more in 2014 with Vibe Tape +++ 3 and ESC vol. 2. Each tape is more than worthy of your time as they all are comprised of tracks that are magnificently crafted. Samadhi EP also dropped in 2014. Now this EP is short and sweet (5 tracks), but it is still powerful. My favorite tracks include: “Enter the Void”, “Take You There” and “Wait a Minute” featuring Tiffany Gouché.
In 2015, Omari dropped High-Hoops and Higher-Loops, a re-release of sorts because some tracks were featured on the release of High Loops in 2014. Still, another amazing track list for your daily listening pleasure, featuring an array of beats to make your head bob so hard your neck will start to ache. I will say that he has enticed his fans as this mix is made for order on cassette tapes, which are accompanied by exclusive digital downloads with purchase. Unfortunately, I’m forced to only stream online as the cassette tapes are sold out! Fans are still able to enjoy pieces of the two different versions of the tape streaming online. One stream provides mostly instrumentals (heard on Bandcamp), and the other uses most of the instrumental tracks for “Flips”, or remixes to classic R&B or Hip Hop songs using Omari’s beats (heard on Soundcloud). Some of my favorite tracks on the instrumental version include: “Tummy”, “That Girl”, “19th Hour”, and “Janky Party”. For the “Flip” version, my favorites include: “Oo Lah Lah” and “Green Light”. I’ll leave it up to y’all to decide which version you prefer.
Iman Omari and Cavalier also put out a collaborative project, LemOnade EP, in 2015. It features beat production from P.U.D.G.E. and Norvis Jr, and frequent collaborator Quelle Chris. This shit right here? It’s gritty, raw, real Hip Hop. Grrreat (channel Tony the Tiger) beat production all over the project. My favorite tracks include “Tuck and Roll”, “Heavy Crown”, “Dat Lah” and “The Dirge”. Love how this tape has snips and clips from movies and conversations with elders about love in all forms, whether it’s of the flesh or of music.
I must say, I also love the fact that other Iman Omari fans love his sound as much as I do. Check out this video made by a fan @simplyxbekah that brings together Iman Omari’s beat “Gemz” from High-Hoops and Higher-Loops and a clip from the mini-series Afro Samurai (2007)!! It’s almost as though this song was made for this fight scene.
All in all, Iman Omari creates feel good music, which he places in a genre of his own called “vibe music”. The type of music you play loud and sway to. The type of music you let serve as your soundtrack during your daily travels to provide perspective . The type of music you play after a long work day to unwind and de-stress. The type of music that completes your love-making playlist. The list goes on. Omari is also apart of the Vibe Music Collective, which is a group comprised of a few of the aforementioned artists who share the vibe aesthetic, have respect for good music, and just want to spread positive energy.
I truly appreciate the fact that Iman Omari takes his time making each and every tape or album before putting it out to the world. He’s quoted in various interviews as stating that his inspiration comes from everything and everyone, but his songs are particularly influenced by his personal emotions and his state of mind during the time of production. When we are listening to his music, it’s as though we have a soundtrack from his personal experiences. I’ve got to publicly thank this man because his tunes have become the soundtrack to my own experiences. Much respect, Iman Omari.
[Like what you hear, support the artist!