Omarion talks “The Millennium Tour,” a possible Pleasure P Verzuz battle, remaining unbothered and more
REVOLT caught up with Omarion, who was social distancing in Los Angeles, to chat about touring again with B2K, his music, his new book about being unbothered, quarantine life and more. Read here!
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Omarion is “unbothered”… literally. If you love 90s and early 2000s R&B, you’re most likely a fan of his. With the return of “The Millennium Tour” earlier this year, and before COVID-19’s stay-at-home orders, music lovers were reminded of the epic reign of R&B boy band B2K. As many may recall, after the group broke up in 2004, O’s solo career continued to skyrocket and he released his debut album, O, which was nominated for a Grammy in the category of Best Contemporary R&B Album. The year 2020 marks the project’s 15-year anniversary.
“I got this icebox where my heart used to be!” 2006’s “Ice Box” was a moment in time. 2014’s “Post To Be” and 2010’s “I Get It In” come in on par as close favorites, as well. For the past two decades, Omarion has been entertaining the masses. As a result, the public eye has seen him transform from a child star into a grown man.
REVOLT caught up with Omarion, who was social distancing in Los Angeles, to chat about touring again with B2K, his music, his new book about being unbothered, and more. Read below!
How’s quarantine life treating you?
To be completely honest, when I’m not working or traveling or on the road and doing shows, my home is really my safe haven. This is a piece of cake, I’m chillin’. I’m at the crib. I’m getting work done. My kids still have school via FaceTime. Nothing has stopped. Quarantine life is like taking a break from the road.
“The Millennium Tour” was going great. How was it to have to stop because of COVID-19?
I’m a person who really believes in divine timing. I’ve been rolling with the universe for a long time. So, when things happen, it’s purposeful. Something like this, I’m still surprised that everyone’s being forced to stay home and not do anything. Like what?! It feels a little like jail. But, I really love my home. I really enjoy myself at home.
What’s your best memory of “The Millennium Tour” before the COVID-19 madness?
I noticed in the early 2000s, the 90s were being celebrated. Everybody wants to go back to the 90s, super 90s swag. Now that we’re in 2020, it’s time for the early 2000s to be commemorated and remembered. That’s the real reason for that nostalgia. Really a multitude of my fans haven’t really had one singular place to go like the “Scream Tour” where we started our relationship. Me as a performer, it’s like, “Oh okay, this is the touring business. I’m a performer, this is important for me.” But, I didn’t know that it was going to be a lifelong connection to where 15 years later, so many people came out. We just dropped a project with Zeus Network: The Millennium Tour Live.
There’s something so special about B2K and that tour. What’s it like seeing that replay on television?
Rightfully so, it’s such an enhancement to my catalog because not many artists have a long run in the game. Not too many artists link back up with their old bandmates after 15 years of not seeing each other. That’s a specific type of class of entertainment and performance, so it’s unbelievable to me. A lot of the fans said they hadn’t linked with their friends in a long time, they didn’t have nowhere to go. She got kids, she got kids, but, “Yo girl, ‘The Millennium Tour.’ We going.” They link up. It’s such a memory for us all, people who really truly appreciate my era or style of music.
How was it getting back onstage and busting out the dance moves?
I love it. I loved it. We did rehearsal obviously, but I haven’t stopped. I enjoyed myself.
What inspires you to make music today?
My real life. There’s something powerful about real time and being in your truth. Everything motivates me. I really want to always encourage people to move and dance. I always want to bring that joy. That’s my vibration. All my music, even if it’s a heartbreaking experience, it’ll always end on a high note. You have some good takeaways, that’s what motivates me to continue on. As an artist, I’m here to remind people through the design of life, which is traumatic for everyone. I haven’t met not one person who hasn’t gone through some level of trauma. My contribution being on the planet is to make sure people stay motivated on their journey.
I feel like people forget you’re from Inglewood.
I know. It’s the versatility. Early in my career, I did movies. I was doing a lot, so people forget. Real L.A. though. Me and Nipsey went to the same junior high school. People do forget that, that’s low key right there.
Have you been tuning into these IG Live battles?
I love them all. I really enjoyed T-Pain and Lil Jon. Sean Garrett and The-Dream, I really enjoyed watching that. It was funny on a lot of levels. With The-Dream playing golf. I’m one of the few people with songs from both of them. They’ve both written songs for me, so it’s funny. That was great. I didn’t get to tap in with RZA and DJ Premier, but I saw it was live. A lot of people in there.
I was tapping with my Dominicanos, what’s my man’s name? Hold on. Don Miguelo. He had the Live lit too. Spanish mamis all in the building, had about 200K in there. I’ve been enjoying it. I love that people are staying motivated and doing things from home. The general consensus is that people want to engage. It’s funny how when you take away something, something else always [comes]. Cause and effect. It’s so interesting because people usually don’t really talk to people, they don’t really acknowledge people. It’s cool to see people saying hi, being thoughtful. I hope that continues to spread on the planet.
Pleasure P said he’d battle you. Would you consider?
Oh yeah, I seen that. It’s too many hits, I don’t think it’s fair. Listen…
Does Pretty Ricky count?
Yeah, Pretty Ricky could count. Let’s go through the era real quick: B2K, then my solo career. Bow Wow and Omarion, Maybach Music Omarion, all the other albums, the current s**t. It’s a lot of music. I went through some the other day. I’m like, “Damn, it’s a lot of songs.”
You forget your own hits?
Yeah because I don’t listen back to my catalog. I have so many songs with people, too. I have a song with Gucci Mane people probably don’t even remember, “I Get It In.” The song with Young Money, I did the hook. I have so many songs in my library. I don’t think it’d be fair with Pleasure.
Love that you’re paying someone’s phone bill during COVID-19. How did you come up with that idea?
We have a contest with my new song featuring T-Pain, “Can You Hear Me?” We’re helping people out at this current time in need. They have a phone bill they want us to take care of, we’re doing that for people to tap into Triller. We’re also giving away some of my temp fragrances right now. Three different scents: Focus, Balance, Serenity; for all the essential workers and people out there still working at this time.
We’ve been collecting emails, sending packs out. If you’re in the mood or you have to do something and want some Focus, boom you hit that and get focused. If you’re feeling like you’re pissed off? Hold up, Serenity. When you’re having a good time, you hit that Balance. Bam, alright I’m good. You have to check in with yourself.
Your energy is so vibrant and positive. Do you ever get pissed off?
Oh what? I get pretty upset. I don’t try to hide my emotions, I understand the importance of where I should put them. That’s the misnomer about being unbothered. Nah, don’t think I’m not feeling anything. I just understand what’s important. Sometimes, those things aren’t important. It has nothing to do with me. But, I get pretty pissed. I’m passionate. I’m sensitive, too, on the other side of sensitivity is awareness.
What’s your son’s, Megaa, favorite Omarion song?
Let me tell you something funny. He watched the Live yesterday for the first time. He hasn’t seen it. He’s sitting back just looking at me. I did this one move the other day, he got so upset. He said, “Dad, show me that move!” I’m like, “I’ma show it to you, but you have to work your backslide out too before you start understanding what this is. You have to push, transition, boom.” He’s like, “Teach me the moves!”
At five years old!
Yup. “Post to Be” is his favorite because when we did the show at The Forum — well I didn’t bring him out. The head of my security Scotty P put him onstage. When I turned around, I seen him. I said, “You want to come?” He’s like, “I’m coming!” He came down and performed with me, so “Post to Be” is special for him.
How’s your book coming along?
How to Live an Unbothered Life: Lessons and Takeaways. In the book, I’ll be going through some scenarios. I wasn’t always a book reader, but I’m a book reader now. I read whenever I get the opportunity to. There’s something special and important about sharing information, also writing. When they say there’s power in the pen, it’s for real. I’ve been exercising it through song. I did one autobiographical [book] many years ago, but it’s time to give up those keys. Give up those formulas. For people who’ve had similar experiences privately, they can get some information. They can add it to their life and grow.
Any plans to act again?
Fasho. We’re definitely going to be on the big screen soon, along with my new album [Passport]. Well it’s not really an album, it’s an experience. Myself and James Fauntleroy put this together. I’m so excited for people to see it and feel it, for it to be on the planet. We lit!
Favorite quarantine snack?
Probably a smoothie. I make a smoothie at least two times a day. You have to get your greens in. For people who don’t eat greens, all you have to do is make a smoothie. Make it taste good, there you go.
Anything else you want to let us know?
“Can You Hear Me?” video is coming, be on the lookout ya’ll. Hold it down while you’re at the crib. Be safe, stay well, and have a little dance off.
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