Michael J. O'Hara/The Sheik
Born and raised in his native St. Louis, (O'Hara) dates the beginning of his career to the age of six when he wrote his first song on his parent's new Christmas piano. He continued all through school playing, singing, writing and performing in his father's Baptist church as well as others around the city, honing his skills until he helped to form a rather successful regional rock band called (The Sheiks) which moved to New Orleans in 1979. His band was the opening act for legendary rockers such as "The Rolling Stones," "The Who," The Police," Chaka Kahn," The J. Geils Band," "Alice Cooper," "The Kinks," Atlanta Rhythm Section" to mention a few for the sixteen years he was with them. His band also played with legendary "Chuck Berry" on famed ABC' "In Concert," as well as the 84' New Orleans' "World's Fair" for the entire nine months the city hosted the world!
A toss of the coin, found (O'Hara) leaving his band to head west to Los Angeles to seek higher stakes in one of the epicenters of the music industry. He was successful in securing a publishing deal with MCA /Universal Publishing Co. where immediately co-penned with the late (Sammi McKinney) two #1 hits for legendary singer, (Anita Baker) "Just Because," and "It's Been You All The Time." He also co-penned with (McKinney) "Feels So Good" for the (Spike Lee) movie- "Do The Right Thing," as well as songs for "Patti LaBelle," "Jody Watley," R&B Diva- "Meli'sa Morgan," "Cee Cee Peniston," "Tramaine Hawkins," "Bobby Brown," Phajaii," "Robin S.." "The Perry Sister,"and legendary "Judy Collins" as well as a host of other notable artist around the globe. (O'Hara) has even performed some of his work with "Judy Collins" at famed "Canegie Hall" for three consecutive nights, as well as Saturday Night Live with legendary rocker-"Sting!" Many of (O'Hara's) hit songs were also co-penned by legendary writers such as "Denise Rich," and George Lyter."
O'Hara was eventually teamed with acclaimed Nashville writer and producer, (Robert White Johnson,) and together they wrote a gospel rock opera called, "Isle of Dreams" based on the life and times of (John the Revelator) from 'The Book of Revelation" in the bible which performed twice in front of the "New York Theater Guild," and at famed "Powell Symphony Hall" for two nights, then eventually performing for four years on the Branson Mo. stages and in some of the most prestigious churches around the St. Louis area.
After becoming a minister, another toss of the coin found (O'Hara) once again leaving his native St. Louis after taking care of his father till his passing to move to Fort Worth , Texas where he performed in over sixty eight different retirement facilities a month, as well as pastoring in two of them for nine years before leaving Texas to return back to his beloved New Orleans to resurrect his earlier alter-ego- (The Sheik!) where in 2014 he performed a one-man show July 26, 2014 at famed "Jimmy's Music Club" which garnered him the cover of the (Life Styles) section of the "Times Picayune " on July 25. 2014!. That same week he performed on (The Morning Show-WWLTV) and (WYES TV) on the same day! (O'Hara) recently formed a new and spectacular backup band he has named- RESURRECTION! with some of New Orleans finest musicians: Carlos Barrientos/Lead Guitar, Charles Booksh/Bass, and Gary Johnson/Drums!
All in all, (O'Hara) has garnered "4-Grammy Nominations," "2-American Music Awards Nominations," as well as "2-BMI Awards" for songwriting, not too shabby for a kid from St. Louis! He published his first work of fiction called "CHURCH!" in 2013 which was released by "Strategic Books" and can be found on "Amazon.com," and "Barnes & Nobles.com!
As "Anita Baker" said it best in an article in the "St. Louis Post Dispatch" when she performed in that city, "Michael O'Hara" is one of the best American writers of all times!" making him a force to watch in this millennium and beyond!
This is my new CD- "It's My Turn" on Rabadash Records available at-
From "Futura" CD
Michael J. O'Hara Merchandise
Keep dreamin folks...they do come true!