A source at the label confirmed to the BV Buzz that the Sony imprint decided to drop the former B2K lead singer.
Omarion (real name: Omari Ishmael Grandberry) signed as a solo artist to Columbia Records after B2K broke up in December 2003. His boy band was actually signed to Sony’s Epic division.
The 23-year-old singer released two solo CDs for the record company, including 2005’s ‘O’ and 2006’s ’21.’ Both albums were certified gold.
In December of 2007, Omarion partnered with rapper Bow Wow on the CD, ‘Face Off.’ To date, the set has sold 341,137 units according to SoundScan.
No word on what the singer’s plans are for life after Columbia Records.
My source speculated that if former Sony executive David McPherson fills the late Ronnie Johnson’s job as Executive Vice President and head of Urban Music at Capitol Records, its likely Omarion could end up there. McPherson was influential in B2K’s success at Epic.
Another option could be Motown Records.
Omarion’s management and production company, The Ultimate Group (TUG) has a deal with that label and released Omarion’s good friend and business partner Marques Houston’s last two CDs through Motown.
Ouch. Having noted the poor performance of his solo albums as well as the atrocity of a joint album he dropped with Bow Wow, I can’t say this is surprising. IMO it was always a case of ‘when’. Not to be fatalistic, but finding success elsewhere is still going to be a tough feat for Omarion; after all, unlike some (*cough* Kelly Rowland *cough*) Columbia did a great job promoting Omarion’s releases as well as footing the bill for the top-notch producers enlisted on his albums. Yet, all of this, and he still flops. I’m thinking it has more to do with the domination of ‘that’ market by the likes of Chris Brown and Usher, leaving the pretty indistinctive Omarion without much of a chance. Anyway, good luck to him – he’s going to need it.