Artist Spotlight – Omar Sherif
Consistency is key in the music world
Not chasing popular trends, but perfecting your craft and standing out from your peers. Omar Sherif has now spent over a decade building his brand and making his signature sound of ‘uplifting’, a sound that stands out amongst the crowd time and time again. Omar was on the break out level as the pandemic started but now as we return back to our new normal, he is looking to jump feet first back into gigs, music and surpass his previous positions to become a household name in the trance world.
Thank you for taking the time to sit with me today. How are you doing? Are you ready for the music world to open up again fully?
Hello, I am great thanks. I think everyone in the world is thankful this whole pandemic and lockdowns are over. It’s been a couple of years now without any events taking place so I think everyone is super pumped and thankful we got the chance to have festivals and clubs back. At the end of the day, electronic music doesn’t have the same magic without experiencing it in a party nor does it have the same effect as listening to it in a club or festival.
FSOE debuted a collaboration you did with Philippe El Sisi called Pendulum which was amazing. This track is also the 600th release on FSOE. You have a long history with the label, how does it feel to have the support of someone you have looked up to your whole career?
Yes, my new collaboration with Philippe El Sisi, Pendulum just came out on FSOE as its 600th release. For me FSOE and Aly & Fila have been a true inspiration; they managed to break through the electronic music scene when it was kind of dominated by some of the industry’s greatest names such as Tiesto, Paul Van Dyk, Armin, Oakenfold, Ferry Corsten & many more…
The signature sound they introduced is what made them stellar in their career and made FSOE one of the biggest trance labels out there. I am blessed to have their continuous support which they provide to anyone on the label and I am where I am today, having played some of the world’s biggest festivals and clubs such as Tomorrowland …etc. because of this support. Their success is what drives me more to try and live up to the chance they gave me.
Over the last two years, you and Philippe El Sisi have made quite a few tracks. How did this partnership come about? And have you two have more in the works?
I’ve known Sisi for ages, however we became really close after FSOE 450 weekender that was in Luxor, Egypt. We hadn’t seen each other for a while as I was living in London for a while. We ended up playing our sets after each other and realized how close our styles were, we had another gig coming up after that which we both were playing so I told him that I had started a follow Up for A New Age – The FSOE 400 Anthem. So, we decided to meet up in the studio and work on the track and this is how we ended up with our collab with Aly & Fila The Chronicles which ended up being voted FSOE Wonder of the Year. We hit it off from that point and ended up working a lot in the studio together from then on which is more fun anyway ha-ha.
We do have a lot of big tracks coming out this year and next one, some with big vocalists that we have been a fan of for a while and a few others with the signature uplifting FSOE sound.
Over the last two years many artists had to find new outlets to reach fans. What outlets did you turn to? Are you going to keep any of them going now that the world is open again?
It was an interesting time we lived but hopefully we never see it again. And like I mentioned earlier, music with clubs and festivals where fans get to listen to their favorite tracks or experience it in clubs with friends helps build the connection with the music. During lockdown, live broadcasts and sets on different platforms such as Twitch became trendy, we did a few take overs with FSOE and a few live broadcasts but I think people are now more interested in going to events than watching sets online.
You moved to London a little over 10 years ago. Do you think the moved helped your career why or why not? Would you do it again?
Yeah, I think it definitely did, it’s one of my favorite cities and definitely living in London made it easy to move around easily being in such a central location, allowing me to attend events all around Europe. It is also the place where I met a lot of people from the industry, event organizers and it’s where I met a lot of the up n’ coming DJs and producers who helped me get to where I am today. It gave me exposure playing in some of the world’s iconic venues such Ministry of Sound, Electric Brixton and many more!
You have announced some shows for the summer in Utrecht and Ibiza so far. If you could play any two festivals, what would they be and why?
Summer festivals and Ibiza are probably two of the best things we all wait for, I’m pretty excited to be back playing at open air festivals which always have a special vibe and of course I can’t wait for the 4th of August to play Paul Van Dyk’s Shine Ibiza alongside PVD himself, John O Callaghan and Funka.
If I had two festivals to choose; Tomorrowland would definitely be one. I played there twice and every time was super fun. It’s such an impressive festival – it’s a celebration of music. My 2nd pick would be ASOT Utrecht since I haven’t played that festival yet and it’s an iconic trance event and Dutch festivals are pretty special.
Finally, if you could only live by one motto what would it be and why?
Everything happens for a reason or work hard, play hard ha-ha!
I actually believe experiencing all sorts of events and festivals makes one understand more what works in a club or a festival because you get to experience it as a clubber so you know the effect of a track. And more importantly sometimes you get big opportunities by just being at the right time at the right place; you just need to follow the signs the universe sends in your way!