Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Tell Santa Claus You Want: Natalie Toro "Just In Time For Christmas"

Classically-trained, Broadway veteran, Natalie Toro brings her infectious energy,and powerhouse vocals, coupled with luscious tones to melt any heart with the, release of "Just In Time For Christmas"....

Yep this pretty much sums it up, this was my first encounter with the force of nature known as Natalie Toro and I must say, not only do I love her voice, I personally think she is da bomb!

The following is when Michael met Natalie, grab some Eggnog and raise a glass, Cheers!

NT: Hi Michael, it's Natalie Toro, how are you?

MS: Hey, want to hear something funny? I found out at the very last minute that you were on the web series "Child of the 70's" and I was watching an episode you are in, I know Michael Vaccaro (Actor/Creator/Writer of the show), I did a short film with him.

NT: Oh my God how funny! Did you see the Christmas dinner scene?

MS: Yes!

NT: We had the best time shooting that, Oh My God,  it was during the summer, and here we are trying to get in the Christmas spirit in the middle of August in New York. (laughs) I've known Michael all my life.

MS: I watched the video for song "Just In Time For Christmas" five times before you called, very nice. Was that shot in August too? (laughs)

                                                         "Just In Time For Christmas"

NT: No, it wasn't shot in August, but it was very funny shooting it in Central Park with a hidden camera. People thought I was insane! (laughs) I had the little ear plug in my ear and my iPod in my pocket and I was singing to Jesus, yep it was just me in the middle of Central Park singing acapella while the video was being shot! (laughs)

MS: The video came out really great - hard to believe you shot it guerrilla style.

NT: You want to know something really funny, when you see the unedited footage before the song got put it in, I am underneath the big theater in Central Park, you know that dome theater? I'm wailing, the acoustics there are incredible! There were people watching and shooting video footage of this crazy lady in a coat, me, just singing at the top of her lungs to no music and you can hear this saxophone player playing "New York, New York" in the background, I was crying I was laughing so hard trying to focus on what I was doing!

MS: Vocally you are really simple, clean and direct, I love that!

NT: Thank you. I really tried to focus on getting away from my "Broadway Voice" on this album. I really wanted to find out who Natalie was, with the help of my producer, Dawn Makay she really worked with me, I mean I've always had a pure clean sound, but Broadway has a standard of what to do in a show, like using vibrato, also I tend to over pronounce everything because of the theater. With this album I really felt like a recording artist, I chewed up the mic I was very up close. A lot of my pure sounds were even more pure when I didn't add a vibrato.

MS: Great! For me personally I think a lot of artists over sing things just to show off.

Natalie & Frosty
NT: Also when you realize if you can't control your vibrato, and this is something I learned from Dawn, when someone has vibrato on every syllable of every word, it really takes you out of the song. It's not all about balls to the wall, it's about finding those moments, it's about what you are singing and the intimacy of it.

MS: "Just In Time For Christmas" is a great example of that.

NT: It's like a grand Disney song.

MS: That's a great way of putting it.

NT: Yeah, I hope Disney can hear it, hey I want that somewhere in a Disney movie! We even have a New Age song on the album "The Christmas Song" with an American Indian flute, so we really worked on that vocal purity and clarity, I mean if I am going to have an American Indian flute playing with me on a Christmas song I better have that same purity and clarity of what that flute represents. It's haunting and at the same time it's meditative, I mean you can't be meditative with someone's vibrato going "Ah ah ah ah ah" that's not meditative, that's like "go get a gun and kill me." (laughs)

MS: I agree, that's why I hate House Music.

NT: House Music is what you dance to when you are having a cocktail.

MS: Not even then I can't be near it.

NT: Yeah, I know I hate it too. (laughs) Hey Michael it might be our age! (laughs)

MS: All of your tracks on "Just In Time For Christmas" are clearly a labor of love for you, but is there any track in particular that resonates more than the others?

NT: My absolute favorite Christmas song is "Ave Maria/O'Holy Night" my idea for intertwining them is they are meeting on the same premise. "Ave Maria" is a prayer about the Holy Mother and her Child, and "O'Holy Night" is about the birth of the Child and I thought Oh My God, it made complete sense to put them together.

MS: Any new videos beside "Just In Time For Christmas" coming from the album?

NT: Yes, the video for "Baby It's Cold Outside" a duet I did with Ryan Kelly was just released.

Chill With Natalie & Ryan at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OBLYyZCGA2U

Bravo Natalie at: http://www.natalietoro.com/

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