Article By Stacy R. Lynch and Brian Scott

With an easy Caribbean accent and throwback “Gumby” haircut, singer/songwriter/producer Maurice “Verse” Simmonds presents his debut album, Stories of a Bachelor on a late fall evening to a crowd of DJs, press and industry people alike.

Fyi…I’m officially considered press.

What makes this island boy special? He’s cute (sorry baby), charismatic and has created his own musical lane: “Island B.” What the bump is Island B? It’s a mix of R&B, Hip-Hop and Caribbean sounds that embody Verse’s musical philosophy.

What is Verse’s musical philosophy exactly? I’m not quite sure but this is what I do know.

Born in Puerto Rico but raised in St. Thomas, Verse was first introduced to music through the radio. After graduating from high school, Verse relocated to Atlanta, where he and his producing partner, Shama Joseph, began working with the likes of Akon and super-producer Rodney Jerkins.

Are you really interested in the autobiography of Verse Simmonds the producer? If so, check out his bio on www.myspace.com/versesimmonds.

Let’s examine the true character of this artist. What do I mean when I say the true character of an artist? The true character of an artist really comes down to the musician’s love for his/her craft regardless of the cars, money, clothes and…Drake can finish this sentence for me. Don’t get me wrong Verse lovessssss to be the center of attention. The kid is charismatic. But I honestly think he would be satisfied if he performed in front of a bathroom mirror- without an audience. Seriously. I think few artists have the ability to do this- particularly at the end of their career.

Verse creates his own artistic energy that clearly reflects in his music. The man nearly started his own dance party in front of a room of grown men and few women. Now that takes gumption. Do I think Verse has to grow musically? Absolutely- just like any artist; but I think he has the potential to be the next big World Artist. Just check out his music, and I guarantee that you will include one of Verse’s tracks into your Ipod rotation or your daughter will beg you to get him perform at her Sweet Sixteen. Don’t miss the boat headed to Island B.