Memphis musicians gather to honor life of Omar Higgins

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Local musicians gathered at the Clayborne Temple on Tuesday to honor the life of Omar Higgins, bassist and vocalist for the bands Chinese Connection Dub Embassy and Negro Terror.

Higgins’ family and friends were surrounded by these musicians to remember Higgins, but with how Higgins was known for showing love to all people around him, all of the about 200 people in attendance might as well have been family, too.

Jordan Brock, a friend who met Higgins through the music scene, said that love was felt by everyone in the temple during the service.

Throughout the service, every guest speaker talked about Higgins treating everyone he met like his own family.

“He’s a brother,” Brock said. “He calls everybody that. Whenever you meet him, he makes you feel like you’re family, like you’ve known him for years. He’s the first friend that I’ve lost, so it’s still pretty rough.”

Higgins died on April 18 at the age of 37 from health complications related to a stroke he suffered days before.

He was a vocal activist for anti-racism efforts in Memphis, and he was a musician at Le Bonheur, singing for children in their rooms to take their mind off medical stresses.

Higgins was honored during the service with a resolution from the City of Memphis and County Commissioner Tami Sawyer for his push for equality.

Brock said it’s hard to even describe how much Higgins meant to Memphis music because he was in so many places and “had his hands in so many different things.”

“He is part of Memphis music culture,” Brock said. “He is a Memphis legend, and I’m very thankful to say that I met a Memphis legend while he was around.

Brock said he was still learning new things about his friend’s musical past and how much Higgins loved everything about music.

“With how many people showed up today, it’s like this man is much bigger than any of us ever thought,” Brock said.

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