Dear God if Im dreaming please wake me up, because my Island gone crazy say the lyrics to Island Not The Same by hip-hop artist Mona Li$a.
The songwriter, whose real name is Simona Eversley, was inspired to write about the gun violence plaguing the Island after her cousin Jahmiko LeShore was shot dead in March 2011.
She will soon release No Days Off. The album is a mix of reggae, dance hall, hip-hop, R&B and a few techno songs.
The 24-year-old said she has seen a big difference between the way Bermudians live now and how they lived ten years ago. One of the noticeable changes is that police need to carry guns, instead of flashlights and batons to combat crime.
Thats the message I try to bring forth all the time this is not our type of life and lifestyle, she said.
This is not in our blood to be out here killing each other and so non-violence is my main focus at this point because at the end of the day all these people that are dying used to be friends and they used to go to school together.
She said she was very close to Mr LeShore; some people even called them twins when they were younger. She described the 26-year-old as a really sweet gentleman and said family was extremely important to him.
Ms Eversley told The Royal Gazette: He was all about family. The reason he passed was a big shock to our family. He never got to meet his son. His son was born two weeks after he passed.
We are a small, close-knit family, so when we did lose Jahmiko it was very hard. Even to this day its hard, I cant believe hes not here.
Hes the inspiration for everything I do, no matter what it is.
Two days after her cousins death, Ms Eversley penned the lyrics to Island Not The Same. The tune encourages residents to stop the violence. It became the second most requested song of 2012 on radio station Irie FM.
Her music videos pay homage to murder victims from across the Island.
If you have seen my videos you see I have Jason [Smith] and Randy [Robinson] in my video, she stated. Its to show Bermudians, as well as [gang members in] Parkside and the 42 area that its not about discrimination at this point.
We are losing people and if we dont get a hold of it now, then eventually all our black, young men are not going to be here and many children will not have their fathers — as they dont now.
Some of the victims family members have reached out to thank her on Facebook and Twitter, she said.
Its not about [picking sides] at this point. If we want to save our Island and our people we need to put our pride to the side and do what we have to do so we can bring some peace to this place. Its Bermuda.
Ms Eversley was born and raised on the Island, but moved with her family to Chicago when she was in middle school.
At age 19, she was part of a female hip-hop group called First Class. They almost got signed by a record label after performing at a music showcase hosted by rap star Nelly. She decided that route wasnt the best option for her and she branched off on her own.
Her music career took a serious turn after her cousins death and she started putting in studio time and working on music video projects every day.
She has found the music industry challenging.
You have very few females that are doing it and the ones that are, are wearing next to nothing on stage. My biggest challenge at this point is being a female, young, black and coming from an Island thats very small and not many people know about it, except for [hearing about] the Bermuda Triangle.
I definitely hope my music is part of that solution and want it to be, but if this music thing doesnt work out when I get older I want to get into politics.
No Days Off is expected to be available on iTunes in March. Visit Mona Li$a Bermuda on Facebook.