Has recorded for Columbia since 1999, pop singer Jessica Simpson at last shifts to Epic. Simpson's move from Columbia to Epic is assumed to mirror that of new Epic president Charlie Walk, who formerly was executive VP of creative marketing and promotion for Columbia Records Group.
"I love all my friends and supporters at Columbia. I will miss them as I start this new relationship," Simpson tells Billboard. "Charlie Walk was my first hero at Columbia. He believed in me before I really even got to meet the rest of the company. I couldn't think of anyone I would trust more than Charlie to present my new music to the world. Epic is in a new place with a new leader. It just seems the right place for me as I begin my new journey."
In related news, Simpson is now working on her next album, the follow up to her 2003's "In This Skin". The as-yet-untitled set is expected before the year's end, but in the meantime, a source says an R&B-oriented first single is "not far away at all." Among the producers contributing to the project are Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis, Cory Rooney and Scott Storch.