*Ages 18-20 entry by advanced ticket only
Ultra Nate Bio
by Michael Paoletta
In her two decades of making music, Ultra NatÃ© has remained a musical chameleon, embracing a variety of sounds, from R&B/hip-hop, soul and disco to house, rock and electro-pop. Her reasoning for doing this is quite simple: â€œI hate boxes,â€ NatÃ© says. â€œWhereâ€™s the fun in being totally predictable?â€ She continues, â€œItâ€™s always important to experiment and be a bit of a maverick in your [musical and personal] stylings. Win, lose or draw, when itâ€™s all over, people will respect you more if you donâ€™t always play it safe.â€ Indeed.
Twenty years after sashaying onto international dance floors with the club anthem, â€œItâ€™s Over Now,â€ NatÃ© stands tall and proud, proving that artist longevity, though not common for singers of dance music, is alive and wellâ€”and a real possibility for those willing to work hard for the money.
Ultra NatÃ©â€™s 20 year anniversary in the business comes at a time of non-stop work and recording sessions. In addition to prepping her eighth studio album Hero Worship (set for release in 2011), Ultra NatÃ©â€™s been busy in the studio with David Morales (for his upcoming album and hers); Robbie Rivera (for his new album); Quentin Harris (a project entitled Black Stereo Faith that NatÃ© describes as â€œsexy soul meets rock with a twinge of disco funkâ€); Nervo (co-writers of David Guettaâ€™s worldwide chart topping â€œWhen Love Takes Overâ€ featuring Kelly Rowland) and Nicola Fasano (Italian DJ/producer responsible for the club hit â€œ75, Brazil Street,â€ which was reworked by rapper Pitbull for his smash single, â€œI Know You Want Meâ€) and a new EP project with Baltimoreâ€™s Unruly Records crew entitled â€œThings Happen at Nightâ€ (a mix of hyped-up hip-hop grooves, raw house beats, heaving bass and ass-shaking beats). Additional collaborations include â€œWaiting On You,â€ a funky disco duet with Destinyâ€™s Childâ€™s Michelle Williams,â€Right Now,â€ with house music innovator Todd Terry and the chart-topping â€œDestination,â€ with Tony Moran, a circuit party anthem which has just gone top 10 on Billboardâ€™s club chart.
At the end of the day, and 20 years on, NatÃ©â€™s maverick style has not changed. It remains intact. She says her creative process, over the years, has not changed either. â€œI still work in many different ways,â€ she explains. â€œIâ€™m very open to trying things differently. Remember: I donâ€™t like boxes.â€
When asked if there is one moment from her two decades in music that will be forever embedded in her mind, NatÃ© pauses. Smiling, she says, â€œIt was in 1998 when â€˜Freeâ€™ had hit its stride. I was performing at an outdoor festival in front of 300,000 people. Midway through the song, I had the sound engineer stop the music so that I could hear the people sing the song a cappella. It was a sea of 600,000 hands in the air, singing a song I wroteâ€”a song that came from my one little self.â€
Well, this â€œone little selfâ€ continues to move forward with several currently smoldering collaborations and a new full-length due in 2011. â€œI want to continue to be in your face,â€ says NatÃ©. We wouldnâ€™t want it any other way.
Chris Burns bio:
via Resident Advisor
Chris Burns has pioneered his way through the DC creative landscape via an original DJ style inspired by the disco culture of yesteryear with a modern, house twist. By emphasizing versatile programming, innovative mixing and the effective creation of strong moods on the dance floor, he has gained a loyal and diverse following in D.C. and beyond. As a result, Burns has received numerous awards and critical acclaim for his unique approach to contemporary dance music.