Omarion Opens Up About New Boss Timbaland -- And Why It Was Time To Cut Off His Hair

'He not just a producer, he's a visionary,' O says of Tim.

Omarion's life is getting a lot lighter. He's cut his long hair, left an unhappy record-label situation and it looks like the door is closed on B2K for good.

"I feel negativity is not to be paid attention to," he said a couple of days ago while at a photo shoot. "Unless it's something that happened with Chris. When it gets that serious, it's time to speak out."

O is talking about the recent child-molestation allegations brought against his manger and friend Chris Stokes by former B2K member Raz-B. Raz later retracted his charges, but the sting seems to still be with Omarion.

"Really, my thing is, I talked to the cats, and it's sad what people will do when they're in the position of 'don't have,' " the singer said of his onetime group members Raz, Fizz and J-Boog. "People will say, 'Omarion is still out there and in the pubic. Omarion is still successful.' But they don't sit back and think, 'Why is Omarion able to get this opportunity? Why are they not getting this opportunity?' Fizz put a single out. They are a product of their karma. I can't talk in detail about what was done [on their parts], but a lot of wrongdoing was done. A lot of false statements — off-the-wall, disrespectful things. Not even on a dislike level. On a hurtful level.

"I used to rock with them dudes, and now when I see them, it's not like that," he added. "It's gotta be like, I look at you funny or you look at me funny. If somebody has done something to disrespect you as a man, I feel like I have to protect myself. So now when I see them, after everything that happened, how do I be nice? How do I be cool? I'm a spiritual dude, and a part of me is forgiving. But there is so much that has been done, you get tired of that. This whole next album, you'll see a whole new Omarion."

O's new album is really just getting started. He's gone from the Sony system, where he spent the first six years of his career, to Timbaland's Mosley Music Group. The deal was recently finalized. Omarion said he felt the need to change labels because of all the changes that happened at Sony over the past few years. Switches in staffing, he said, affected the proper push of his past few projects.

"I asked to be released," he said of the rumors that Sony dropped him. "A release is different from a drop. When an artist is dropped, usually they haven't brought any revenue to the company. As you know, I've been with that company for a long time, roughly over six years. Throughout B2K and my solo albums, revenue was still brought in. An artist like me could never get dropped. How did I get dropped and I still ended up in a great situation? Usually when you hear 'drop,' it means, 'Oh, he's over.' It's a wrap. It's unfortunate that stuff like that gets put out there. Everybody likes to associate — especially me being such a cool dude — with negative things. Are you kidding me?"

Simply "amazing" is how O described his relationship with Timbo both personally and professionally.

"He's a great producer, and he's really at the top of his game right now," Omarion declared. "I can't ask for a better person to guide me. We did 'Ice Box.' It wasn't enough for us to really build a solid relationship. But I've got to spend time with him, and we have a strong relationship. It's the biggest blessing that has happened to me musically."

The two became tight during negotiations for Omarion's contract. They had to talk at length about the direction of the upcoming project.

"I actually got a chance to attend his wedding," he explained. "I got some time in the studio with him. Throughout the time for us having to work out the deal, we talked a lot. He told me what he wanted. I told him what I wanted. We had to make sure it came together organically. It was like we chose each other. We really sat down and felt each other out. I respect Timbaland a lot. He not just a producer, he's a visionary. This guy comes in the game and changes the game. It's not like I'm just getting with another producer who has a great track record.

"We're just picking each other's brains to see what can be done differently," he continued. "My energetic style and aggressiveness when I perform, I don't think that's necessarily been captured [for the length of] an album. I always felt like I had joints like 'Touch,' even 'Entourage,' where it's upbeat. But it hasn't been captured in an album. All these crazy new dances, all these different things I wanna do. When I look at my peers in the game, they capture the true essence of who they are. I kinda felt like throughout my career, I had just blots of that."

There's no date yet for the new album, nor have any guest stars been announced. The only other producer being mentioned is Pharrell Williams. O just put footage on the Internet of his mother cutting his hair. His female fans may have shed a few tears, but he said it wasn't as painful for him as it was for his following.

"I'm gonna be 24 this year. It's a progressive age, 21," he said. "I was finding myself and finding out the things that needed to be done as far as my career, what needed to be done. Certain moves. I feel like now I'm in a really great place. Cutting my hair, I feel like I'm going to another level. Cutting my hair was a step for me. Anybody that has had hair for so long, when you're used to something, it's like reforming your life."