Khalid is on the verge of making it big, and the young artist calls El Paso his home. But why are some people negative about him and his well deserved success?

Khalid may be only 19 years old and barely released his debut album last Friday, but the up and coming artist is making his mark on the music world. His mellow voice blends together hip-hop and R&B with situations teens deal with growing up in a digital era. His song “Location” talks about communicating in person rather than hiding behind your phone, something many singles like myself deal with daily. “Location” obviously resonates with his peers, the song has made appearances on both Kylie Jenner and P. Diddy’s Snapchats and has also already hit #44 on Billboard’s Hot 100 as of this week.

The best part of Khalid?

He may have only spent a small amount of time in El Paso, he transferred to Americas High School his senior year, but he has so much love for the Sun City. His tour is called “Welcome to El Paso,” he recorded songs at Beacon Hills recording studio, his music video was filmed here and in multiple interviews he talks about how much he loves El Paso and how this is now his home.

In an interview with The Fader, Khalid spoke about his love for El Paso:

“I’ve lived a lot of different places but I would say that my home is El Paso. I get so much love from a city that I’m not even predominately from. Everyone is just nice, everyone is welcoming and they treat me like their own. It’s a great place with so much, just all this heritage that even might not be mine but just being around it is just really beautiful. I do try to represent El Paso, because this is the place that my real creative was born. Like, this is where it happened. “

So why do some El Pasoans feel the need to hate on this young man’s success?

For instance, back on February 4th the El Paso Times put up a story on Khalid. Haters were quick to attack the young man for seemingly no reason:

El Paso Times Facebook Page

And on Friday for the release of his album, thousands of El Pasoans lined up for a chance to meet the singer. KFox posted a video on their Facebook and many were quick to write idiotic and sometimes racial comments:

KFox Facebook Page
KFox Facebook Page
KFox Facebook Page

So why, after all the positive things and love this artist has shown for the Sun City, do some people continue to speak negatively about him? Whether you like his music or not, you have to admit that this young man is doing great things for the city of El Paso. He is able to connect with the younger generation, and is giving them nothing but positive images of our city. Even in his song “American Teen,” he soulfully croons about how he’s “from the city of the 915, where all the girls are pretty.” Even in the song “Winter,” he gives another shout out to El Paso. In a time where there are so many negative portrayals of this border town, it feels like we are constantly fighting to show people all the great things El Paso has to offer and why it is such a wonderful city to visit. Khalid is an asset in this sense, and El Pasoans should embrace the fledgling singer rather than ostracizing him.

To be fair, there are many people who are leaving positive words and praise for the singer not only for his love of the city, but also for his incredible talent. For every negative comment, many people were quick to jump to his defense and applaud his great accomplishments so far in his career. Khalid is a role model for young El Pasoans, showing them that their dreams are closer than they think. Whether you are a fan of his music or not, you can’t deny the positive impact that this young man is having on the Sun City. And hopefully, people can realize this and support him. This is what they mean when they say to support local music, except you’re supporting local music on the national stage.

So congratulations Khalid on all your success so far and the many successes coming in your future. Know that most of El Paso is behind you and supports you. And we can’t wait to see what you do next.