That was, until the imposter tried to book an appearance through the wife of rap mogul Russell Simmons.

Kimora Lee smelled a rat when “Ginuwine” offered to appear at a fashion show for her husband’s Baby Phat line of children’s clothing in exchange for the phone numbers of certain celebrities, musicians and music industry executives. She instead called Ginuwine’s management only to discover that the singer was not in New York and knew nothing about a fashion show.

“Ginuwine wasn’t going to [appear] in any fashion show because it wasn’t Ginuwine that Kimora talked to. It was this imposter confirming that he’d be there,” an Epic Records spokesman told Pollstar. “So it really left us to convince them that it wasn’t Ginuwine just acting irrationally. It was an imposter. Obviously, if Russell and Kimora had called us about [the fashion show], we would have tried to make him available for them,” the spokesman said.

“That’s how I first became aware of [the scam]. The more I looked into it and actually inquired, it turned out the guy had gotten access to radio stations and actually did on-air interviews, saying he was looking for new artists for his new label and other various scams.”

One radio station that fell victim to the Ginuwine impersonator was WENZ-FM in Cleveland.

Air personality K2da Door told Pollstar all the arrangements had been made to have “Ginuwine” do a call-in show on the air.

“A club in Akron booked him for a concert through a friend that was a hairdresser,” the DJ said. “Everything was going fine until maybe the day before the concert. This guy (the club’s booker) called us up and said Ginuwine was going to do a call-in. We were on the phone trying to get him to the recording, until my boss walked in and said, ‘That’s not Ginuwine.’ The guy totally had me fooled. He’d called the station before and done some kind of promo.”

The Akron club got burned, too.

According to WENZ, someone claiming to represent the singer booked the show and had deposit money wired to St. Paul, Minn. Tickets priced at $20 were printed and sold, and promos for the show were recorded.

The scam artists have apparently pulled the same stunt in Detroit, Little Rock, and other midwestern cities before running afoul of Mrs. Simmons.

“Basically, they started scamming promoters saying, ‘Hey, I’m doing a concert. Send me money,'” the Epic spokesman said. “He was asking concert promoters for money, who were more than willing to send him deposit money. It’s in the thousands. Put it this way: it’s grand larceny.”

The spokesman for WENZ said he believed the total was at least $75,000.

Police agencies in the various cities that have been struck by the Ginuwine fakes have been notified by record company security, as have federal authorities.

Ginuwine’s management is asking that anyone who encounters someone claiming to be the singer be aware that it is likely a scam and notify local authorities.