On the latest episode of “Drink Champs,” N.O.R.E. and DJ EFN sat down with B2K members Lil Fizz, J-Boog, and Raz-B to talk about their careers, beef with Omarion, legendary projects, and more.
B2K was formed and managed by music producer Chris Stokes in 1998 and quickly rose to prominence as one of the most recognizable R&B groups to emerge during the early 2000s. Omarion joined the group a year after its genesis and B2K debuted “Uh Huh” in 2001, which peaked at No. 37 on the Billboard Hot 100 upon release. It laid the groundwork for their self-titled debut album that was later RIAA-certified Gold and peaked on the U.S. Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Albums chart.
After achieving success as a short-lived group, B2K disbanded briefly after the release of their sophomore album, Pandemonium!, in 2002. Despite earning their first No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart with the Diddy-assisted, pre-release single “Bump, Bump, Bump” and going platinum the following year, B2K came to an end due to internal disagreements with Chris Stokes. Although, the group reunited roughly 15 years later for the first time in tandem with “The Millennium Tour” in 2019. More recently, a feud sparked between Omarion and the remaining members after he called them “background dancers” during his Verzuz battle with Mario earlier this year.
To help give fans a recap, REVOLT compiled a list of nine facts we learned from the B2K “Drink Champs” interview. Check them out below and tune into the full episode here if you missed it.
1. On changing their group name from BND to B2K
B2K’s group name stands for “Boys of the New Millennium,” a reference to the current millennium that spans from 2001 to 3000. However, the group revealed that they went under the moniker BND, or “Boys Next Door,” prior to picking up their current name. “It was Boys Next Door. BND,” Lil Fizz said. “We performed for every label again and nobody was rocking with us and then we got to LaFace [Records] and L.A. Reid. We performed for L.A. and he was up in the air about it. He didn’t really know if he wanted to do it or not, but Louil Silas was president of A&R at the time. Rest in peace. He was fighting for us. He was like, ‘Nah, I’ma get him to sign y’all.’ So he called one day and was like, ‘I got the deal done, but y’all need to change y’all name.’”
2. On why they didn’t perform with Omarion during his Verzuz with Mario
In June, Omarion and Mario took the stage for their Verzuz battle where the two performed their respective hit songs, including “Touch” and “Ice Box” as well as “Let Me Love You” and “Crying Out For Me.” While many guest performers graced the stage, B2K didn’t perform with Omarion to much surprise. The group explained why they didn’t link up with the singer for the battle, citing Omarion’s management and unresolved business.
“Max Gousse calls us, he’s like, ‘Yo, what y’all feel about doing Verzuz?’ We’re like, ‘Isn’t Omari doing Verzuz?’ He’s like, ‘Yeah, what y’all feel about doing a few songs with him? B2K.’ We was like, ‘It’s a conversation. We can talk about it if the business is right. Why not?’” Lil Fizz recounted. B2K then recalled hopping on a call with Omarion’s manager, Michelle Le Fleur, the next day and her not being on board with the group performing despite previous conversations.
Fizz continued, “Max said Michelle is cool with it. When we got on this call … she got on the call acting as if she had no idea what the call was about. But it was like, you got on the call. You knew what this was about from the jump.”
3. On intending to do a documentary for “The Millenium Tour”
Pivoting on the conversation of not performing with Omarion at his Verzuz match with Mario, B2K revealed that television producer and “Love & Hip Hop” creator Mona Scott-Young wanted to create a documentary surrounding their “Millenium Tour” in 2019. Fizz said that Omarion’s team blocked the group from doing a film. It was later revealed in 2020 that Zeus Network would be partnering with Omarion to release “The Millennium Tour Live Concert featuring B2K” despite the remaining members no longer being a part of the tour lineup.
“Mona Scott came in and she knew about the tour and I was filming at the time. She’s like, ‘Can we try to do something with a documentary for the tour?’ O and his team comes back: ‘We don’t want to do anything with Mona Scott. Nothing.’ So there goes that,” he explained.
4. On Chris Stokes allegedly stealing money from the group and the moment they split
When asked what prompted them to disband as a group, Lil Fizz claimed management was stealing money amid plans for their third album. The group reportedly broke even on their “Scream III Tour” in 2003, however, their manager Chris Stokes was supposedly able to buy a Bentley while the bandmates were left with nothing.
“It’s four of us, it’s one of him. That’s 20 percent, 100. Where’s our Bentleys? Where is my Bentley? So right then and there on the bus, us four all speaking confidentially: ‘We gotta come up with a plan. We gotta leave this situation,’” Fizz recalled. The group collectively agreed not to return to the house that management purchased for them, but Omarion had other plans they claimed. Instead, O allegedly told Stokes that they were planning to depart, which led him to drop the group. “Management was like, ‘F**k it. This s**t is over, B2K is a wrap. [Omarion], he’s solo. All y’all gotta do is come record the rest of these songs from the You Got Served soundtrack and do the videos and that’s it. We don’t need nothing else from y’all!’”
In regard to what caused Omarion to allegedly turn his back on the group, Fizz said that he slept with a girl that the two members met on tour, causing the former to go into a spiral once he found out. “I was like, ‘Man, I was smashing ‘ol girl the whole tour.’ [Omarion replied], ‘I really liked her, bro.’ I’m like, ‘Bro, that’s not your girl. You cool?’”
5. On Lil Fizz dating Omarion’s baby mother Apryl Jones
Apryl Jones and Omarion broke up after two seasons of “Love & Hip Hop: Hollywood,” and Lil Fizz started dating Jones years later. The show’s confirmation of Fizz and Jones’ love connection upset many viewers and cast members who believed the two violated an unspoken rule by being romantically involved behind Omarion’s back. Fast forward years later, Lil Fizz and Omarion made up on the Los Angeles stop of “The Millennium Tour” in 2021 after the latter accepted Fizz’s public apology for dating the actress and mother of his two children.
“The s**t with Apryl. I made a lot of mistakes that I’m not happy with and that’s one of them,” Fizz admitted on “Drink Champs.” “I made amends with it, I apologized publicly, I knew I was wrong. I gotta live with that s**t. I gotta hold that ill.” Later in the interview, he added, “I played a role in damaging the ego, 100 percent. I own that and like I said, I’m not proud of that. I apologized for it publicly because I really did mean it. In the moment, I resented that man which doesn’t make it right.”
6. On Lil Fizz putting together the idea for Omarion’s single “Post To Be”
Omarion’s 2014 single “Post To Be” serves as the singer’s biggest record to date as a solo recording artist, becoming three-times-certified Platinum by the RIAA and peaking at No. 13 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. Lil Fizz claimed he gave Omarion the foundation to create the song, taking cues from R. Kelly’s song structuring on B2K’s breakout single “Bump, Bump, Bump.”
“I said, ‘Go get a DJ Mustard beat. Throw a rap song on that b**ch, go crazy.’ He like, ‘Yeah, you think so?’ I’m like, ‘Yeah.’ So maybe three weeks later, he comes back with a Mustard beat and a verse and a hook,” Fizz explained. “He drops the s**t, it’s out of here, and I don’t hear from him no more. Literally went MIA on me.”
7. On Will Smith starring in their “Girlfriend” music video
In 2003, B2K dropped their music video for “Girlfriend,” which starred the likes of Vivica A. Fox, Jennifer Freeman, and renowned actor Will Smith. Smith played the godfather in the visual effort, which has since accumulated over nine million views on YouTube. “Another megastar blessed us, my n**ga,” J-Boog said. Raz-B added, “Shout out to Will Smith. History on that story. You know that was the godfather in our video.”
8. On R. Kelly taking most of the publishing on their biggest records to date
Two of B2K’s most recognizable singles, “Bump, Bump, Bump” and “Girlfriend,” were produced and written by R. Kelly, who is currently facing yet another trial for sexual abuse charges. Their greatest hit was “Bump, Bump, Bump,” which topped the Billboard Hot 100 and helped their second album, Pandemonium!, achieve Platinum certification. Kelly also produced and co-wrote 2002’s “What A Girl Wants.” On “Drink Champs,” the group revealed that he owns most of their publishing. They also spoke about him teaching them dance moves and making the group sing “Happy Birthday” to his daughter.
“He did all of the singles,” J-Boog shared. Lil Fizz added, “The second album, we had 17 songs on the second album. We wrote 10 of them because those 10 were by our manager’s producers so it was an in-house play. We really didn’t get the [publishing] we were supposed to get off of that. We got a quarter percent of a percent. It’s like the smallest amount you can get on publishing.”
Speaking on the disgraced R&B singer’s impact on the group, Lil Fizz said, “R. Kelly added to the success of B2K. He gave us our first No. 1 record and because of that record, our album stayed at No. 1 for four or five weeks. Every week … selling 200 thousand every week.”
9. On Raz-B’s lack of conversation during the interview and what it would take to reunite B2K
During the interview, J-Boog and Lil Fizz largely dominated the conversation while Raz-B took a backseat, interjecting briefly throughout. N.O.R.E. and DJ EFN used the final moments of the interview to ask him about a variety of topics, including whether he’d reconcile with his alleged abuser and former manager Chris Stokes; going off the grid in China; and why he hadn’t spoken much. He replied, “I’m in the dark … Raz ain’t never got much to say.”
When asked what it would take to get B2K back together, Raz said, “You’re going to have to create a whole ‘nother special just for the B2K segment. So talk to your partners, we got the ‘Spring Break, B2K’ or some s**t. This is not over, it’s not happening tonight. ‘Spring Break, Omarion,’ whatever you gotta do to stroke his ego. Bring him to the table so we can … this why I ain’t said much tonight.” He continued, “It’s not fair, man. Throw me a blanket, bro. Throw me a f**king lifeline, bro. It’s not fair.”