Omarion in 2007
|Omari Ishmael Grandberry|
November 12, 1984 |
Inglewood, California, U.S.
Omari Ishmael Grandberry (born November 12, 1984), known by his stage name Omarion, is an American singer, rapper, songwriter, actor and dancer. He is best known as the lead singer of the American R&B boy band B2K; the group achieved success in the early 2000s with singles like "Bump, Bump, Bump", "Uh Huh", and "Girlfriend", which all reached success on the Billboard Hot 100. After the group disbanded in 2004, Omarion embarked on a solo career and released his debut album, O in 2005, which debuted atop the Billboard 200 and received a Grammy Award nomination for Best Contemporary R&B Album at the 48th Grammy Awards.
His second solo album, 21 (2006), contained his highest-charting single to date, "Ice Box", which reached number 12 on the Billboard Hot 100. His third solo album, Ollusion (2010), was released on January 12, 2010, with the lead single, "I Get It In". His fourth solo album, Sex Playlist (2014), spawned the single, "Post to Be", which was certified 3x platinum and reached number 13 on the Hot 100 chart in May 2015. Omarion has also ventured into acting, with appearances in films such as You Got Served, Fat Albert, Somebody Help Me and The Proud Family Movie.
Omarion was born Omari Ishmael Grandberry on November 12, 1984 in Inglewood, California, to Leslie Burrell and Trent Grandberry, the oldest of their seven children. His younger brother O'Ryan is also a singer. At school he played on the football team and was also known amongst fellow students for his quirky dance moves. Omari dropped out of high school before graduating. As a child, he featured in commercials for both Kelloggs Corn Pops and McDonald's. He also made cameos in the R&B girl group Before Dark's music videos. Omari soon began pursuing a career in music of his own, and eventually met Chris Stokes, who introduced him to the other members of what would go on to become B2K.
Omari was first introduced to Lil' Fizz, J-Boog, and Raz-B at a New Years Eve party in 1999 hosted by their manager, music producer Chris Stokes. Omari joined their group and took the stage name Omarion. The group named themselves B2K, an acronym for Boys Of The New Millenium. They began touring with Lil Bow Wow, and eventually released their debut single "Uh Huh" in 2001. They soon after released their debut album, the self-titled B2K on March 12, 2002. The album peaked at #2 on the Billboard 200 and #1 on the Top R&B/Hip-Hop albums chart. They followed the album up in December with their second album, Pandemonium!, supported by their most succesful single, Bump, Bump, Bump featuring P. Diddy. The single peaked at #1 on the Billboard Hot 100. This would prove to be the groups last album, as they would disband in early 2004.
In early 2004, Omarion appeared in several films, most notably You Got Served in which he starred alongside Marques Houston, as well as his former B2K bandmates. The movie centered on a group of friends in a hip hop dance crew who take part in underground dance competitions. That same year, he played the role of the school bully "Reggie" in the comedy Fat Albert, based on the animated series Fat Albert and the Cosby Kids. On February 22, 2005, Omarion released his debut solo album O. The album debuted at #1 on the Billboard 200 and Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums charts. The first single from the album was "O". The single peaked at #27 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. The second single "Touch", peaked at #94 on the Billboard Hot 100. The album received a third and final release with, "I'm Tryna", which failed to chart. O has sold over 758,000 copies in the United States since its release. Omarion received a Grammy nomination for the album at the 48th Grammy Awards for Best Contemporary R&B Album.
On December 26, 2006 Omarion released his second album 21. The album debuted at #1 on the Billboard 200 and Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums charts. The first single from the album was "Entourage". The second single "Ice Box", produced by Timbaland, peaked at #12 on the Billboard Hot 100 and is Omarion's most successful solo single to date, reaching gold certification by the RIAA.21 has sold over 390,000 copies in the United States since its release.
Towards the end of 2007, he displayed his acting skills in the thriller Somebody Help Me. This movie was released exclusively on DVD and aired on BET in celebration of Halloween. Omarion has also made several appearances in a number of TV shows, including One on One. Omarion also played the voice of Fifteen Cent in The Proud Family Movie. His portrayal of a rapper, who gets involved with thugs, in the movie Feel the Noise, received mixed-to-positive reviews from critics. Omarion also co-produced Feel the Noise. In late 2007, Omarion and Bow Wow recorded a collaboration album entitled Face Off. The album sold over 100,000 copies in its first week and went on to sell over 500,000 copies, reaching gold certification by the RIAA. The first single from the album was "Girlfriend", followed up by "Hey Baby" as the second single. During this time, Omarion toured with numerous artists, including Bow Wow, Ciara, Yung Joc, Ne-Yo, Usher, Lloyd, Mario, Pretty Ricky, and Jibbs.
On March 30, 2009, Lil Wayne confirmed that Omarion was officially signed to Young Money Entertainment but only after four months he parted ways with the label, with both Lil Wayne and Omarion confirming he was out for business reasons. In early 2010, Omarion signed with EMI and created his own label, StarrWorld Entertainment. Omarion later re-released the single "I Get It In" with Lil Wayne replaced by Gucci Mane. Then he released his second single "Speedin'". He released his third studio album Ollusion, which sold 19,400 copies in its first week.
In 2010, Omarion became a judge on the fifth season of America's Best Dance Crew, replacing former judge Shane Sparks. He left after Season 5 to focus on his music career. In early 2011, Omarion worked on his first mixtape presented by DJ Drama, titled The Awakening. Originally to be released on April 27, 2011, the mixtape was instead released on May 11, 2011. In November 2011, Omarion was seen on set with Japanese star Koda Kumi. On December 6, 2011, it was revealed that he collaborated with the star on the song "Slow" for her 2012 album Japonesque and appeared in the music video. On May 2, 2012, Omarion signed with Rick Ross label Maybach Music Group and Warner Bros. Records. He then appeared on Self Made Vol. 2 and is set to release his debut EP through the labels. Also in 2012, Omarion signed to Jay-Z's Roc Nation Management. On November 29, 2012, Omarion released his debut EP Care Package. On November 5, 2013 Omarion released his second EP Care Package 2.
On August 18, 2014 Omarion was cast to be a part of Love & Hip Hop: Hollywood along with his mother, and girlfriend Apryl Jones while awaiting the arrival of the first child. In November 2014, Omarion released the lead single "You Like It" in promotion of his fourth studio album "You Like It" on February 14, 2014. The second single from the album called "Post to Be," features Chris Brown and Jhené Aiko. "Post to Be" gained substantial commercial success, reaching No. 13 on the Billboard Hot 100. It is Omarion's highest selling song. The song also peaked in the top ten on Urban Radio chart, Rhythmic chart, and the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart and reached gold status by the RIAA in May 2015. He released his fourth studio album, Sex Playlist, on December 2, 2014.
In June 2015, Omarion stated in an interview that he wants to open his own dance studio by the end of the year.
Omarion's music is generally R&B, while he also naturally incorporates Hip-hop elements. His musical influences include Michael Jackson, Boyz II Men, Bobby Brown, R. Kelly, Joe Thomas, Usher, Ginuwine and Dru Hill.
In 2014, a nude picture of Omarion was leaked via iCloud that he confirmed was real. On August 7, 2014, Omarion and his girlfriend Apryl Jones had a son named Megaa Omari. On September 29, 2015, Omarion revealed via instagram that Apryl Jones became pregnant with his second child, a girl. Their daughter A'mei Kazuko was born on March 7, 2016.
|2007||Himself||Most Inspiring Act||Won|
|2006||Himself||Outstanding New Artist||Nominated|
|2008||Omarion with Bow Wow||Outstanding Duo or Group||Nominated|
|2016||Post to Be (featuring Chris Brown & Jhene Aiko)||R&B Song of the Year||Nominated|
|2004||You Got Served||Best Male Breakthrough Performance||Nominated|
|Best Dance Sequence with Marques Houston||Nominated|
|2004||You Got Served||Choice Breakout Movie Star - Male||Nominated|
|2005||"O"||Choice Music: Make-Out Song||Nominated|
|Himself||Choice Music: R&B Artist||Nominated|
|"Touch"||Choice Music: R&B Track||Nominated|
|2008||"Hey Baby (Jump Off)" w/ Bow Wow||Choice Music: R&B Track||Nominated|