Santiago x The Natural

<strong>Home base:</strong> Streeterville<br /><strong>Need to know:</strong> South Side native rapper The Natural (real name: Jeffery Z. Stephens) has collaborated with producer/vocalist (Lawrence) Santiago since 2004 but officially teamed up toward the end of 2011. They combine &lsquo;90s hip-hop love&mdash;&ldquo;for us that was like the golden era of music,&rdquo; says Stephens, 27&mdash;with rock, electro, dancehall and an island feel, informed by the background of Santiago, a Native American who grew up in Guam. He now resides in L.A. but will move to Chicago in August.<br /><strong>Influences:</strong> Sublime, 2Pac, <a class="runtimeTopic" href="#" data-topic-id="PECLB0000006548">Jack White</a>, Born Jamericans, <a class="runtimeTopic" href="#" data-topic-id="PECLB003283">Nas</a>, <a class="runtimeTopic" href="#" data-topic-id="PECLB000005037">Gorillaz</a>, <a class="runtimeTopic" href="#" data-topic-id="PECLB002383">Lauryn Hill</a>, Jackson 5, Outkast, <a class="runtimeTopic" href="#" data-topic-id="PECLB004230">Kanye West</a>, Black Thought, Lee Perry<br /><strong>Live show:</strong> &ldquo;We put it all out there when we're up on stage ... we look at it as both an artform of emotional expression and an instantaneous means to connect with people in the most visceral way we know how--beats to move to, sincere lyrics, and melodies to sing-along with," says Santiago, 29.<br /><strong>Claim to fame:</strong> The group&rsquo;s song &ldquo;Warriors&rdquo; was chosen as the official theme song for professional lacrosse team the <a class="runtimeTopic" href="#" data-topic-id="ORSPT000484">Minnesota Swarm</a>, who will soon fly out Santiago and The Natural to perform at halftime. Individually, the Natural has opened for Akon, the Clipse, <a class="runtimeTopic" href="#" data-topic-id="PECLB000012477">Mya</a> and Cake, and Santiago has opened for <a class="runtimeTopic" href="#" data-topic-id="PECLB002582">Wyclef Jean</a>, Lyfe Jennings and Avant, and appeared in <a class="runtimeTopic" href="#" data-topic-id="PECLB003095">Terrence Malick</a>&rsquo;s &ldquo;The New World&rdquo; and the <a class="runtimeTopic" href="#" data-topic-id="PECLB003751">Steven Spielberg</a>-produced miniseries &ldquo;Into the West.&rdquo;<br /><br /><br />

( April 20, 2012 )

Home base: Streeterville
Need to know: South Side native rapper The Natural (real name: Jeffery Z. Stephens) has collaborated with producer/vocalist (Lawrence) Santiago since 2004 but officially teamed up toward the end of 2011. They combine ‘90s hip-hop love—“for us that was like the golden era of music,” says Stephens, 27—with rock, electro, dancehall and an island feel, informed by the background of Santiago, a Native American who grew up in Guam. He now resides in L.A. but will move to Chicago in August.
Influences: Sublime, 2Pac, Jack White, Born Jamericans, Nas, Gorillaz, Lauryn Hill, Jackson 5, Outkast, Kanye West, Black Thought, Lee Perry
Live show: “We put it all out there when we're up on stage ... we look at it as both an artform of emotional expression and an instantaneous means to connect with people in the most visceral way we know how--beats to move to, sincere lyrics, and melodies to sing-along with," says Santiago, 29.
Claim to fame: The group’s song “Warriors” was chosen as the official theme song for professional lacrosse team the Minnesota Swarm, who will soon fly out Santiago and The Natural to perform at halftime. Individually, the Natural has opened for Akon, the Clipse, Mya and Cake, and Santiago has opened for Wyclef Jean, Lyfe Jennings and Avant, and appeared in Terrence Malick’s “The New World” and the Steven Spielberg-produced miniseries “Into the West.”


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