June is Black Music Month. In 1979, President Jimmy Carter decreed that the month of June would be dedicated to celebrating the African American music and musicians that have helped the country to dance, express their faith through song, march against injustice, and to defend the country’s enduring promise of freedom and opportunity for all.
Last night (June 23), a host of early-mid 2000’s heart throbs got their flowers. After roasting each other in one of the more hilarious promotional videos in recent memory, Omarion and Mario took the stage to face off in the form of a Verzuz battle. It was chaotic to say the least. The battle, which took place in Los Angeles, is still available to watch in its entirety here.
Before the main battle got started, there was a warm up to get fans ready for what was to come. Ray J and Bobby V teamed up to perform their hits against Sammie and Pleasure P. After Deray Davis introduced the competitors, things started to feel more like a rap battle rather than an R&B one. As the crooners took turns singing the songs that brought them fame, they also comically let each other know how they felt about one another.
After almost an hour and a half worth of hits and insults (and a special guest performance by rising star Capella Grey), it was time for the main event, so we thought. Fans expressed how annoyed they were with the delay in between the “preshow” and the Omarion/Mario battle. Deray Davis had to stand on stage for nearly 30 minutes while anticipation grew larger and larger for the headliners to take the stage. When they finally did, we indeed got a show.
All the trash talking the singers did before the battle didn’t do anything but make the battle that much better. The pettiness started right away when Mario brought out three guys posing to be B2K and had them reenact Omarion’s viral dance routine from last year. Mario didn’t do a whole lot of joking the rest of the night though. It was noticeable that Mario wanted to display his vocals more than anything and that he did. Every chance Mario got to show that he hadn’t lost it, he took and knocked it out the park. Omarion decided to appease the crowd with his performance ability and surprise special guests. He tapped R&B superstars Tank and Jeremih to come and offer up some assistance.
After the two traded Billboard hits and deep cut tracks (some we knew and some we didn’t), the two men showed supreme respect for each other. They applauded each other’s careers and noted how they were proud of each other for all of their endeavors. Mario even plugged Omarion’s upcoming book before promoting his own new single featuring Chris Brown. Although the night ended in a high note for both singers, viewers couldn’t help but to pick a winner, voice their complaints and laugh at all the funny interactions that took place throughout the evening.
Who do you think won the Verzuz? What was your favorite moment? Who do you want to see in the next one? Slide in the comments and let us know!