Band of the Day

2013.10.02

Michael O

A rapidly rising R&B star born to bring his soulful, heart-stirring performances to the world
I can see through your painted smile, you don't need to make a sound.
lyrics from Invincible

Born January 8, 1990 in New York, and raised in Portland, Maine, Michael O. is a singer/songwriter living in Los Angeles, California, who released his first EP, In the Beginning, this summer.

A lover of music all of his life, Michael O is best known for leading his college singing group, the Dartmouth Aires, to a second-place finish on the NBC’s The Sing Off, which displayed Michael as a powerhouse lead singer. He wowed judges with his versatility, stage presence, and vocal command.

Ben Folds of Ben Folds Five commented that Michael has a “timeless style”, and Shawn Stockman of Boyz II Men declared that Michael is “a freaking superstar!” During his experience on The Sing-Off, Michael O realized that he was born to be a singer, and born to bring his soulful, heart-stirring performances to the world.

Michael O has performed at Lincoln Center and the White House, and in venues all around the world.

Read on for a track-by-track breakdown of his EP, straight from Michael himself:

My EP, In the Beginning, is a real reflection of my past year of pursuing music. I moved out to LA in the summer of 2012, and had no idea how to become a musician. In the Beginning is my diary, reflecting on my successes, failures, personal and professional hopes, dreams, and fantasies.

Invincible: This song is straight to the point, and I wanted this song to start the flow of the EP. I wrote this song in response to a lot of the BS that I have seen throughout my life, whether in high school, in college, and here in LA. There have been tons of people in my life who smile at you, but at the end of the day, talk crap about you. I have also met many people who have told me that I was not good enough to pursue music as a career, that I do not have a chance to make it. This song is a response, stating that I see through their facade, and that's not going to break me. I'm going to do what I love, and on top of that, I'm going to do it well.

Take You Home: Take You Home really speaks for itself. There are times when you see someone, and you want that person so bad, that you don't overthink it, and you follow your instinct. And when that feeling is mutual, there is truly nothing better. Take You Home is a song about two people who have an intimate and instinctual connection, a connection that words are not really needed. I wrote this song because its something I've experienced here in LA, and something that many people can relate to.

Ooh Baby: I wrote this song in the hopes of one day feeling the sentiments that I sing about in this song. I wrote this song, fantasizing about being in love, and what that would mean. To me, among other things, being in love is loving every single thing about a person, even things that your partner might not like about themselves. Being in love is seeing their imperfections as their actual perfections.

Start With Tonight: I wrote this song to remind myself that no matter what, either personally or professionally, I need to live in the moment. I wrote this song due to an experience I had with a girl at a party where I didn't care about what I was going through at the time, I didn't care about how my night would end up; all I cared about was vibing and chilling with her at the moment, and that was an awesome experience. It was freeing to let go, and live in the moment, and I really felt I could be my true self to her, which was awesome because LA girls can be intense. It was just really cool to vibe and just be in that moment with someone.

Breakdown: I wrote this song at my lowest point in Los Angeles. I recently had an important career meeting, and it went terrible, so terrible that I couldn't get out of bed for two days. I had never felt so alone, so afraid, so fearful about my dreams, my goals, and my career; I was at my breaking point. I told myself I must write myself out of this pain. This song wrote itself, took me around eight or nine minutes to write, and arrange. This song took me out of my pain, and reminded me why I pursue music; because music has the power to heal people.

Champion Love: I'm an East Coaster, and have spent a lot of my childhood in Boston. I wrote this song right after the Boston bombings. Living in LA at the time, I could not believe what I was seeing on the news. I wrote this song for Boston.