Omar Torrez Biography
“Omar Torrez’s lysergic Latin guitar fluttered like a Bossa Nova hummingbird, a neon Andres Segovia, runs punctuated with Bill Frissel sustains and Hendrix air-raid siren chords.” ~ Flagstaff Live
Omar Torrez’s musical recipe is equal parts post-modern rock, Mexican and Cuban Son, gutbucket blues, spiced with stunning guitar wizardry and playfully irreverent songwriting.
He was recently Tom Waits’ guitarist on the Glitter & Doom world tour.
His latest record, A Night of Serious Drinking, was produced by Tony Berg (Michael Penn, Aimee Mann, Bob Dylan, Pink, Public Image Ltd.). The single “Marina” won 3rd place in the Latin category of the International Songwriting Competition in 2012.
Omar is now working on a new record on the Mexican label Discos Intolerancia.
The Mexican-American artist first gained notoriety as a finalist at the Jimi Hendrix Guitar Competition at the Bumbershoot Festival, using a borrowed guitar. Since then, Torrez has won fans worldwide through international festivals and humanitarian work.
In addition to Tom Waits, Torrez has shared the stage with Buena Vista Social Club, Jethro Tull, Tony Levin, Bill Laswell, Kinky, Sidestepper, Pancho Sanchez, Mumiy Troll, Francisco Aguabella and many more.
As a Fulbright Scholarship recipient, the artist performed to the benefit of children displaced by the conflict between the Republic of Georgia and the Russian Federation. Torrez was also awarded several grants from CONACULTA (the Ministry of Culture and Education in Mexico), in one of which he curated and produced the record entitled Entre Mundos, a collaboration between La Banda Sinfónica Mixteca and international musicians, using music to tear down cultural barriers.
The artist has played at many prestigious festivals such as: Bumbershoot and The San Francisco International Film Festival in the US, Festival Vive Latino, Festival Cervantino and Feria de San Marcos in Mexico, The Waiting for Waits Festival in Spain, The Steppenwolf Awards, Island of Light and Dvizhenie (“Movement”) in Russia. Omar’s music was featured in Warren Miller’s “Impact” and on television shows such as NBC’s “Heroes,” “Whoopie,” “Felicity” and “Grosse Pointe.”
Endorsements include: TC Electronic, Bogner Amplification, Carlos Amplification and L.R. Baggs.
“Omar Torrez is one of the most unique and talented emerging artists on the global music scene today. His new album, A Night Of Serious Drinking is nothing less than stellar – a must for people who care about real music!”
~ Peter Rafelson, Music Producer (Multi-platinum – Madonna, Lady Gaga, Stevie Nicks, The Go-Gos).
“Dare we dub him the Latin Hendrix?!
The fastest fingers in the West,
a massive talent poised to break out and kiss the sky.”
~ The Seattle Times
“Omar Torrez, who kept his utterly delightful nastiness buried previously, started ‘All the World is Green’ with a dexterous Spanish guitar intro.”