Omar Akram

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Omar Akram
center
Background information
BornNew York City, U.S.
GenresNew-age, Jazz, World music
InstrumentsPiano
Years active2002–present
LabelsReal Music, Twinbrook Entertainment
Websiteomarakram.com

Omar Akram is an Afghan-American producer, composer, and pianist. In 2013, he became the first Afghan-American to win a Grammy Award for Best New Age Album for his fourth studio album, Echoes of Love.[1] He is also an inspirational writer who contributes to The Huffington Post.

Early life[edit]

Akram was born in New York City. He grew up traveling around the world as the son of a United Nations diplomat living everywhere from Prague to Havana as well as his ancestral home of Afghanistan.[2] He notably met Fidel Castro at the age of 14, who is said to have allowed him to sneak into the local Cuban jazz clubs, the sounds of which influenced his formative compositional style.[3]

Career[edit]

In 1993, Akram moved to Los Angeles where he performed in various Mainstream Top 40 bands while also writing his own music.

In 2002, he signed a recording deal with Real Music.[4] His first commercial album release that same year, titled Opal Fire, reached Billboard's New Age Top 15 Chart that same year.[5] His sophomore release Free As A Bird in 2004, produced and arranged by keyboardist Gregg Karukas, featured world class violinist Charlie Bisharat and Grammy Award-winning saxophonist Eric Marienthal.[6] This album also reached Billboard's New Age Top 15 Chart that same year.[7] In 2007, Secret Journey, produced, co-written and arranged by Gregg Karukas, also critically acclaimed, featured Ardeshir Farah.[8] In 2012, Akram was nominated and won the Grammy Award for Best New Age Album for his album Echoes of Love, also produced, co-written and arranged by Gregg Karukas. This album was followed by Daytime Dreamer in 2013 which featured six new recordings along with tracks previously released from Opal Fire and Free As A Bird.[9][10]

Akram's most recent album release "Destiny," co-produced with producer Walter Afanasieff, was independently released through his own company, Twinbrook Entertainment,[11] on August 9, 2019. Afanasieff also contributes vocals to the first single release from the album, "Here I Am". An accompanying official music video was directed by Erik White. Shardad Rohani arranged and conducted the Slovak Radio Symphony Orchestra on two tracks.[12] The album was mixed by four-time Grammy winner Dave Reitzas at Westlake Studios in Hollywood, CA.

Starting from the lockdown resulting from COVID-19 pandemic, Omar Akram has been producing a docu-series titled "Omar's Music Chamber, where he performed a number of songs in his previous albums, as well as some newly written music. "[13][14][15] From this collection, Omar Akram released a new album, The Light Will Come, on April 23, 2021.[16]

Awards and honors[edit]

Grammy Award for Best New Age Album for Echoes of Love in 2014.[17]

Personal life[edit]

Omar currently[when?] resides in Los Angeles, California with his wife, son and daughter.[18][better source needed]

Discography[edit]

Opal Fire[edit]

Real Music (Album Release Date: September 3, 2002)

No.TitleComposerLength
1."Sugar Coated Love"Omar Akram4:38
2."Morning Rain"Omar Akram3:52
3."A Vision Of You"Omar Akram4:34
4."Last Dance"Omar Akram5:03
5."Waves Of Emotion"Omar Akram3:23
6."Farewell For Now"Omar Akram4:21
7."Unity"Omar Akram3:39
8."Innocence Lost"Omar Akram3:29
9."So Far"Omar Akram3:39
10."Gypsy Woman"Omar Akram3:53
11."Longing"Omar Akram3:19
12."Opal Fire"Omar Akram4:48

Free As A Bird[edit]

Real Music (Album Release Date: April 27, 2004)

No.TitleComposerLength
1."Free As A Bird"Omar Akram5:05
2."Passage Into Midnight"Omar Akram4:23
3."A Day With You"Omar Akram5:09
4."Falling Through The Rain"Omar Akram4:48
5."Beauty Unveiled"Omar Akram4:27
6."Dancing With The Wind"Omar Akram4:53
7."Surrender"Omar Akram6:42
8."Riding The Current"Omar Akram4:00
9."Never Let Go"Omar Akram3:35
10."Trust Unspoken"Omar Akram4:01
11."Flight Of Mystery"Omar Akram5:04

Secret Journey[edit]

Real Music (Album Release Date: September 25, 2007). Secret Journey peaked at #12 on Billboard's New Age Chart.

No.TitleComposerLength
1."Run Away With Me"Omar Akram, Gregg Karukas5:08
2."Secret Journey"Omar Akram, Gregg Karukas6:05
3."Nomadic Rhapsody"Omar Akram, Gregg Karukas3:37
4."Passage Of The Heart"Omar Akram, Gregg Karukas3:32
5."Gypsy Spirit"Omar Akram, Gregg Karukas4:28
6."Stargazers"Omar Akram, Gregg Karukas3:56
7."Seven Secrets"Omar Akram, Gregg Karukas4:47
8."Whispers In The Moonlight"Omar Akram, Gregg Karukas4:38
9."Mirage"Omar Akram, Gregg Karukas4:32
10."Shimmering Star"Omar Akram, Gregg Karukas4:41
11."Caravan"Omar Akram, Gregg Karukas4:35
12."Angel Of Hope"Omar Akram, Gregg Karukas3:30
13."Desert Flower (Bonus Track)"Omar Akram, Gregg Karukas4:05

Echoes Of Love[edit]

Real Music (Album Release Date: June 5, 2012). Echoes Of Love was awarded a Grammy for Best New Age Album.

No.TitleComposerLength
1."Echoes Of Love"Gregg Karukas, Omar Akram4:46
2."Take My Hand"Gregg Karukas, Omar Akram4:52
3."Lovely Day"Gregg Karukas, Omar Akram4:43
4."Miracle"Gregg Karukas, Omar Akram4:11
5."Finally Home"Gregg Karukas, Omar Akram4:15
6."Draw Me Close"Omar Akram, Gregg Karukas3:48
7."Free Spirit"Gregg Karukas, Omar Akram3:42
8."My Hope Is You"Omar Akram, Gregg Karukas3:33
9."Rejoice"Gregg Karukas, Omar Akram2:42
10."Cry For Love"Gregg Karukas, Omar Akram4:41
11."Open Skies"Gregg Karukas4:56
12."Merry"Omar Akram2:37

Daytime Dreamer[edit]

Real Music (Album Release Date: September 24, 2013)

No.TitleComposerLength
1."Downpour"Omar Akram4:16
2."Dancing With The Wind"Omar Akram4:52
3."Searching"Omar Akram3:59
4."Surrender"Omar Akram6:42
5."Passage Into Midnight"Omar Akram4:21
6."Daytime Dreamer"Omar Akram3:31
7."Love Of My Heart"Omar Akram3:39
8."The Promise"Omar Akram4:27
9."Morning Rain"Omar Akram3:53
10."The Last Dance"Omar Akram4:41
11."My Desire"Omar Akram3:30

Destiny[edit]

Twinbrook Entertainment (Album Release Date: August 9, 2019)

No.TitleComposerLength
1."Take Me Away"Omar Akram4:23
2."Destiny"Omar Akram4:01
3."My Promise To You"Omar Akram4:20
4."Nomad"Omar Akram4:22
5."Mystery Train"Omar Akram3:47
6."Coastal Drive"Omar Akram4:24
7."Lotus Flower"Omar Akram3:41
8."Celebrate New Life"Omar Akram3:41
9."Regenerate Love"Omar Akram3:57
10."Matters Of The Heart"Omar Akram3:56
11."Secret Place"Omar Akram4:30
12."Here I Am (featuring Walter Afanasieff)"Omar Akram4:46

The Light Will Come[edit]

Twinbrook Entertainment (Album Release Date: April 23, 2021)

No.TitleComposerLength
1."The Light Will Come"Omar Akram6:09
2."For George"Omar Akram8:29
3."Hear My Heart"Omar Akram7:10
4."For Merry"Omar Akram4:36
5."Waterfall"Omar Akram5:17
6."Since I Met You"Omar Akram7:37
7."Wish I Could See You"Omar Akram6:43
8."Pressing On"Omar Akram4:30
9."Caught Dreaming"Omar Akram9:21
10."New Morning Sun"Omar Akram5:53

The second track of the album, For George, is dedicated to the memory of George Floyd.[19]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "INTERVIEW WITH LOCAL GRAMMY : Awards". www.longbeachindependent.com. Retrieved April 2, 2013.
  2. ^ "Omar Akram".
  3. ^ "Can Music Can Bridge Cultures and Promote Peace?". huffingtonpost.com. June 12, 2013. Retrieved June 12, 2013.
  4. ^ "IB Post"
  5. ^ "Homepage".
  6. ^ "Free as a Bird by Omar Akram - Album Review".
  7. ^ "The Hype Magazine | Interview".
  8. ^ "Secret Journey by Omar Akram - Album Review".
  9. ^ "Daytime Dreamer by Omar Akram - Album Review".
  10. ^ BWW News Desk. "2012 Grammy Winner Omar Akram Releases New Album, Daytime Dreamer". BroadwayWorld.com. Retrieved 2019-05-30.
  11. ^ "Grammy Award-winning recording artist Omar Akram: "You don't need a lot of money to achieve…". 8 July 2019.
  12. ^ "The Hype Magazine | Interview".
  13. ^ "Grammy Award-Winning Omar Akram: "Most people think that if you have enough money to do a project, then you can succeed. I learned the hard way — money alone is not enough. It's a combination of your talent, vision, hard work and resources" - Thrive Global". thriveglobal.com. Retrieved 2019-05-30.
  14. ^ "Grammy-winning Musician Omar Akram On Creating His Own Destiny". www.thehypemagazine.com. Retrieved 2019-05-30.
  15. ^ Muj, Nicole (26 May 2019). "Grammy-Winning Musician Omar Akram Is Building Cultural Bridges | INDIE ENTERTAINMENT (News) MAGAZINE". Retrieved 2019-05-30.
  16. ^ "New album release "The Light Will Come"".
  17. ^ "INTERVIEW WITH LOCAL GRAMMY : Awards". www.longbeachindependent.com. Retrieved April 2, 2013.
  18. ^ "Omar Akram".
  19. ^ "New album release "The Light Will Come"".