Xavier Omar Fights Sickness and Lifts His Houston Curse

Xavier Omar performed at Warehouse Live Saturday night.
Xavier Omar performed at Warehouse Live Saturday night. Photo by David "Odiwams" Wright
“I’ve been doing this in every city with this song and I have someone special for you guys to see tonight,” exclaimed Xavier Omar as he motioned to a woman standing off stage.

The lights dimmed in the smoke-filled ballroom at Warehouse live as up-and-coming singer Miche’la Walker hit the stage and performed Sango’s part for the duet "What Do We Do." The crowd swayed along as she began to ease into the music when suddenly Omar stopped the track.

“Hey…you can’t be nervous,” he laughed as he directed the band to restart the song. “And we got to get my lyrics right. I wrote them. I say piece of me and y'all sing pizza me. It not right. Go to genius. That’s right because I wrote the lyrics there.”

Miche’la, not missing a beat, pulled her phone out and laughed “That was just a test. I was testing you.”

The crowd laughed as the two started the song back at the hook and ended in a roar of applause.
click to enlarge Omar led the crowd in hits like "Afraid" and "Blind Man" - PHOTO BY DAVID "ODIWAMS" WRIGHT
Omar led the crowd in hits like "Afraid" and "Blind Man"
Photo by David "Odiwams" Wright
The Hot Javi Tour had Xavier Omar touching down in Houston Saturday and bringing his soulful sound to Houston despite not having the best of luck in the city.

“I’m trying to break my Houston curse but it’s not off to a good start,” explained the singer between songs. “I’m sick so I’m drinking Pedialyte. When we first set up the stage some of the packs weren’t working because of…some kind of wrong frequency. The lights weren’t working at first either. It just wasn’t going right.”

The curse didn’t seem to affect the crowd who watched Omar put on a lively, audience involved show. At certain points in the show Omar led the crowd in a two step that had the entire room moving eventually leading up to the entire crowd dancing to Frankie Beverly & Maze’s “Before I Let Go” by the end of the show.  After Omar apologized for being sick but still wanting to perform a song, the crowd sang along as he pushed through the high notes.

At one point the San Antonio native took a back seat, switching places with his drummer and providing the beat as his band performed New Edition’s “Can You Stand the Rain.” Even when under the weather Omar was energetic and kept the crowd moving, performing crowd favorites like “Sweet Holy Honey”, “Afraid”, and his biggest hit to date “Blind Man.”

click to enlarge Omar fought through sickness and delivered an amazing show. - PHOTO BY DAVID "ODIWAMS" WRIGHT
Omar fought through sickness and delivered an amazing show.
Photo by David "Odiwams" Wright

“I’d like to thank each and every one of you for making [Blind Man] my biggest song…even though it’s from like five years ago…and I’m tired of it,” he laughed.

The laughter and excitement returning from the crowd proved that Omar's "Houston Curse" had finally been broken — at least for a time. 
KEEP THE HOUSTON PRESS FREE... Since we started the Houston Press, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Houston, and we'd like to keep it that way. With local media under siege, it's more important than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" program, allowing us to keep offering readers access to our incisive coverage of local news, food and culture with no paywalls.
Houston Press contributor DeVaughn Douglas is a freelance writer, blogger, and podcaster. He is 1/2 of the In My Humble Opinion Podcast and 1/1 of the Sleep and Procrastination Society. (That last one isn't a podcast; he just procrastinates and sleeps a lot.)