Last updated: 04/04/2003 08:45:23 PM
NATURAL demonstrates the whole package – superior instrumental skills, silky-smooth vocals, and hard-hitting dance routines. Because they play all of their own instruments, NATURAL are more Beatles than Backstreet, but they’re definitely influenced by both.
The group, made up of Ben Bledsoe, "J" Josh Horn, Michael Johnson, Patrick King, Jr., and Marc Terenzi, came together in Orlando, Florida, in the summer of 1999, and began singing original, a cappella songs for anyone who would listen. After performing at one particular audition, they were signed to a local production company and began recording demos for presentation to major record labels. As they worked hard to pursue a recording contract, including one trip to New York where they performed fifteen showcases in a single day, they began building a local following, and sold out their first concert, at the House of Blues in Orlando.
NATURAL caught the interest of Orlando music-magnate Louis J. Pearlman, who after being blown away by the group’s talent, signed them immediately. In 2001, NATURAL spent four months touring with the reunited Monkees as featured guests on their tour. During June, July and August, NATURAL participated in a national promotion with Claire’s Accessories, who sold an exclusive CD-Rom version of their first single. During this promotion the group made appearances at Claire’s stores across the country. The month of August was spent on a back-to-school tour for the SAKS group of retailers, who also featured the group in their catalogs, advertising, and radio campaigns.
Their first single, Put Your Arms Around Me, was written by Steve Kipner (Genie in a Bottle, The Hardest Thing), and produced by Ali Dee. In September, the single was certified Gold by the RIAA, and it is well on its way to Platinum.
NATURAL's ABC Family Channel concert with Michelle Branch, Lil' Romeo and Nivea began airing the end of November, 2001, and this winter the group toured Southeast Asia, where they were mobbed by thousands of fans wherever they went. Two recent Prom promotions gained the band national exposure. The first was a Perfect Prom promotion with Student Aware and the United States Air Force. The second was a series of national ads for Faviana prom dresses featuring the band with prom models, which also included internet and in-store exposure.
Now on a promotional tour in Europe, NATURAL recently released a second single there, "Let Me Count the Ways", which debuted at #10 on the German charts. Currently the group is finishing up recording on their self-titled, debut album, which will be released Fall, 2002.