Omar Martínez is a young musician and arranger originally from Puerto Rico and currently located in Houston, TX. He was only 6 years old when his father took him to a children choir rehearsal in his hometown of Caguas in Puerto Rico. This was the beginning of Omar’s passion for Music. After the children choir Omar started playing recorder and joined a recorder choir. The following year, he joined a Handbell Choir. He was already taking music reading classes and at the age of 8 Omar joined the Specialized School of Music in his hometown, Caguas called “Escuela Libre de Música Antonio Paoli de Caguas” (‘Specialized Music School Antonio Paoli from Caguas’). Students come to these type of schools on ‘after-school’ hours. Here he was asked the question “What instrument would you like to learn?” , and Omar picked the trumpet as the instrument he wanted to learn. There was no specific reason why he chose it, in fact, his father Angel ‘Gory’ Martínez plays the saxophone, but still Omar chose the trumpet. During all these years of preparation, Omar advanced in his studies of music and trumpet. He excelled academically and musically at just 15 years old. He even received a ‘distinguish student’ recognition for his excellence in the music studies. He was already doing some work around his town and Puerto Rico at this age, playing concerts with different groups from the school and church. At 16 he starts his first part-time job playing trumpet in the Municipality Band of his town Caguas, Puerto Rico. This is the official band of the Mayor in the city of Caguas and it’s duty is to participate in the city’s official events.
At this age (16) Omar is presented with an option of skipping 11th grade. The principal of the private school he studied in gave him this advice after reviewing his excellent academic record and Omar’s desire to study music in a professional level. After doing this, Omar graduated and at the age of 16 he was accepted as a student in the Conservatory of Music of Puerto Rico, where he was the youngest student at the time. He was studying Music Education with a specialization in trumpet. Omar has a classical music background and as bonus, living in the Caribbean musicians are exposed to latin and popular music, which gave Omar the opportunity to develop the skills in this style as well. During the four and half years of him studying in the Conservatory of Music, Omar achieved some major milestones like performing with the Conservatory of Music of Puerto Rico’s Concert Band in the Carnegie Hall (NYC) along with other Concert Bands from Universities in USA, and winning 1st prize in a Band competition.
After graduating in December 2006, doors opened for Omar in Houston, TX to continue being a teacher in CanZion Institute, a Musical Institute founded by the recording artist and Grammy award winner, Marcos Witt. Omar saw this as an opportunity to continue his teaching and music career abroad. In January 2007 he moved to Houston and it was just 2 months after he moved that he became a trumpet player for Lakewood Church, the largest fastest growing Church in USA (pastor Joel Osteen). Short after this he became the arranger for the horn section at Lakewood. Omar has made a name for himself in Houston as he did in Puerto Rico, and he has developed the skills as an arranger and a trumpet player, arranging and recording for a number of influential artists and producers in the USA and the world, such as: Marcos Witt, Cindy Cruse Ratcliff, Danilo Montero, Aaron Lyndsey and Israel Houghton, just to mention a few. Omar worked as an arranger and trumpet player in Israel Houghton’s latest Grammy Award winner production, ’Love God.Love People’ (2010).
Omar is currently part of the month to month tour ‘A Night of Hope’ with Pastor Joel Osteen and Lakewood Church. Also he is continually arranging and recording in sessions in and out of Houston, teaching private lessons, freelancing as a musician and arranger. Just recently Omar has discovered a new hidden talent, he is writing his first fiction book titled ‘Living on Dor’.
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