Omar Apollo Is Embracing His Whole Being With Apolonio

Omar Apollo has landed. 

Following the release of his debut album, Apolonio, the free-spirited singer-songwriter donned a fuzzy purple suit and took the stage at Prince’s Paisley Park studios. Gyrating to his own music, chest bare and guitar in hand, he became the first artist to play a concert in this sacred space. “His estate reached out to my management,” Apollo tells SPIN. “I’m just like, ‘Dude, of course, I’ll be down.'”

The 23-year-old, who is pushing the boundaries of pop with R&B and funk references from Prince’s playbook, made history on the turf of his late idol. Inspirations he was dreaming about three years ago are now part of his world.

When Apollo didn’t have the money in 2017 to upload music to Spotify, a friend who believed in his talent let him borrow $30. He uploaded what became his breakthrough single, “Ugotme.” After the song was added to the “Fresh Finds” playlist and racked up tens of thousands of streams, he went from making music in his bedroom to performing it for crowds at SXSW and Lollapalooza.

“I started touring,” he says. “I thought, ‘Me being at home isn’t going to be the lifestyle anymore.” He kept the momentum going with his EPs: 2018’s Stereo and last year’s Friends.

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