A native of Syria, Omar Souleyman began his singing career in the mid-1990s at the age of 30. Through collaborations with local musicians using Arabic-modified synthesizers, Omar helped pioneer a new wave of dabke, the region's folkloric dance and party music. Omar's music has steadily gained popularity over the years. He's released five studio albums since 2006 and held his first performances outside of the Arab world with tours of the UK and Europe in 2009. During SXSW 2013, Omar headlined a Red Cross benefit, "Our Heart Aches For Syria," at the Long Center.
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