Featured Artist: Natalie
Label: LATIUM Records
She's been melting hearts for years as a dancer for the Houston Rockets but it has only been within the last few years that she has really found her groove - music. Her sophomore album,Everything New(Universal Republic), hit stores everywhere September 19th.
Coming off of her first hit single "Goin Crazy", Natalie looks to bring a sexier, more mature sound to her music. A freestyle rapper by nature, Natalie incorporates that within her music, delivering a raw emotion most other artists lack. The lead single off of Everything New was produced by the highly sought after duo, Play N Skillz. You would better recognize them by the sound they produce - just listen to Chamillionaire's "Ridin'," it is unmistakable.
Natalie abandoned her plans of moving to Los Angeles to become a choreographer after it was apparent the underground following she developed through her freestylin' rap talents lead to signing on with her management company, LATIUM Records.
Her songs are personal and emotional, she sings like a songbird and Jordan was lucky enough to have a chat with this beautiful pop diva in the making.
First off, tell me a little about yourself for those who may not know much about you.
I am 27 years old from Houston, TX. I was an NBA dancer for 7 seasons and that ended in 2005. I started off in the local music scene as a freestyle rapper and everyone said I was good. So I started with mix tapes and from there I just went into singing.
How would you describe your sound?
My sound is somewhat different. Every artist says that, but coming from my background of freestyle rapping, I am able to write differently. When I go into the studio, it’s very natural and it comes across in the music. People can feel my emotion in my music and it’s very relatable in the music. I like to fill up a lot of the space, I don’t like to leave a track empty.
When did you discover your passion for singing?
Looking back, I was always singing and dancing when I was younger. But 3 years ago, I was like “Man, this is what I really want to do. I don’t see myself doing anything else.” So yeah I guess it was about 3 years ago.
You were a dancer for the Houston Rockets. What made you follow the singing path instead of continuing with dancing?
Whatever is meant to happen will happen. I’m very big on fate. I thought I would be a big choreographer but I’ve always had music deep inside me. I feel this is something that was meant for me to do. I always said I would leave the NBA to pursue my music career so it was cool to have the opportunity to do that.
Who or what inspires you to make music?
A lot of different things. As far as artists, I would say Michael Jackson, Janet Jackson, Madonna, even young artists like Beyonce. But real life things that happened to me on a personal level or happened to someone close to me inspire me to write. If I’m going through something good, bad, happy, or sad, I’m able to write what I feel and not hold back. Real life inspires me.
Where were you when you heard your first single on the radio?
I was actually at a Taco Bell drive-thru in Houston. Everyone was telling me they had heard my song and it was on a countdown and I was with my younger sister. It was the best feeling ever to hear it as number 4 on the Top 8 at 8.
How did you react when you found out “Goin’ Crazy” hit number 1?
Ooh, sometimes I feel I have to pinch myself. I can’t believe to this day, a year and a half later, that the song gets played, that it’s still requested. It was like wow I was able to beat out “Soldier” by Destiny’s Child which is one of my favorite groups. For awhile it never really hit me until I started going on the road and performing and I was like whoa I’m really doing this and my song is on the charts. That’s a dream come true.
Was there a specific story behind “Goin’ Crazy”?
Give me a little insight on your writing process for a new record.
Usually if I get a beat from a producer if nothing comes out immediately I will toss it. I don’t like to sit with an instrumental and think about what I’m going to say. I just like to put in a track and just write it and let the track take me where I will go. It just comes out easier if you let your feelings go. I let the track take me where it wants to take me.
What can fans expect from your new album “Everything New” which hits stores September 19?
Are you planning a tour to support the new record? Where can fans expect to see you?
You have an incredibly in-depth online fan site. How does it feel to have such devoted, passionate fans?
Who is your favorite artist you’ve performed with?
What city has the best crowds?
What song do you wish you had written?
What is currently in your CD player?
What do you like to do when you are not performing or making music?
I like to relax, I’m a big movie watcher so I like to go to movies. I’m a girl so I like to go shopping. But, most importantly, I like to spend time with my family because we are very close
What kind of advice do you have for young artists out there?
Anything else you would like to say before we go?
September 21, 2006
She's been melting hearts for years as a dancer for the Houston Rockets but it has only been within the last few years that she has really found her groove - music. Her sophomore album,Everything New (Universal Republic), hit stores everywhere September 19th.