We met Natalie Horler at her record offices in Manhattan recently. Natalie is the singer for Cascada. Their song “Evacuate the Dance Floor” is one of our favorites.
Do you like to sing by yourself? For example like in the car?
I do actually, I like singing in the car all the time. Because I try to save my voice for the shows I don’t do a lot of singing at home, but when I’m in the car driving I do tend to sing a lot.
Do you look up to some singers?
Our next single in the states will be “Fever,” which I don’t know if you heard of it? It's from our album.
Do producers change you voice for effect, and if so, what songs?
They don’t do a lot of it, but as you can hear it’s as in “Evacuate.” I’m not sure others songs as well. Can’t think of it right now. Sometimes they’ll use little effect doing with technology to make it sort of sound a little bit more interesting, but it's just for little parts of the song to make it a little bit different.
How old were you when you started to sing?
I definitely started very young, but I can’t really recall what age I was, but I was even younger than you guys I was singing in the church choir and that sort of thing. So very, very young.
When you have a concert do you get a lot of guys screaming or girls?
I must say the girls are the loudest so you win. The guys don't scream they go “Roar” and the girls scream. They do show me their appreciation, which is a good thing.
Are you just a solo person or do you have a band?
Well, you can’t really call it a band just because I’m the only person that goes on stage and I have my dancers so we’re sort of like that team on stage. But part of Cascada as the group is Yanou and Manian, who are my producers and they pretty much stay in the studio.
Do people ever tell you how great you sing or do you just know you sing great?
Oh bless you. I get a lot of people telling me that I sing well and that’s always a nice compliment. You can’t hear that enough.
If you heard somebody singing your song on the street would you tell them that the song is yours?
No. Actually it has happened. No I really wouldn’t do that because, I don’t know, I think it might be a little embarrassing maybe. If they're singing my song they should recognize me anyway. I'm kidding.
Do you ever have time to go to a mall or party?
Oh yeah. I don’t have a lot of time, but I always try to fit it in because I’m a shopaholic and a party girl. So I always try to get out if I have a little bit of free time. And I love to shop too.
We don’t know if this is too personal but is Cascada your real name?
Cascada was never actually meant to be my stage name. I do get called Cascada as a name and I do answer to it nowadays. But it’s actually the overall name of our group. And it means Waterfall in Spanish.
Do you think you could sing well if you sang like another kind like rock or hip-hop?
Oh yeah I can imagine. I really like rock music and, well hip-hop is not really my thing. I’m not really a rapper. But I really enjoy lots of different kinds of music. And I could imagine if it’s about the singing I think it doesn’t really matter what the must is behind it. I think you make it what it is.
Who is your favorite singer and if you meet them what would you do?
I don’t have one favorite singer. There are a lot of singers out there that I do very much respect and enjoy their music. Say Alicia Keys, you probably heard of her, there’s this old folk singer that I like Justin Nozuka. I’m really into him. I’d still realize that they are human in comparison to obviously some fans really realize that I'm just the same as you. And that's often forgotten. That’s not something that I have not forgotten. So I would just like to have a nice conversation with them.
What will call your next album?
Oh, it’s too early to tell yet. We’ve only started working on it slowly. It will take about another year until we have a title.
When you had your first concert, were you nervous?
I was, but to be honest I’ve done a lot of shows now and I still get nervous before pretty much every gig. So obviously the bigger venues make you more nervous than the little ones. I don't know. Television, that makes you really nervous. Especially live television because things can go wrong.
What do you do in your free time when you don’t sing?
I do laundry. I don't get a lot of free time so obviously I have to do the normal things like your mom and dads have to do at home as well. Clean the flat, do the laundry, go shopping, by food and also see my friends and family who I don't get to see often.
What do you think of when you sing?
Well, obviously on stage I don't really think of about much else then what I'm doing because obviously it might make me sing the wrong words. I just concentrate on the audience to be honest. The most important thing for me on stage is to connect with the audience, to you guys and make sure you enjoy what you're seeing.
Do you songs have any meaning and if so, what is it?
Every song does definitely have some sort of a meaning I guess behind it because obviously the subjects are always a bit different in every song. So you can’t put it all in and generalize it. I don’t know often the subjects are things that you can identify with especially our fans. If it’s about love or heartbreak or if somebody’s getting on your nerves. That sort of thing. So those are the general subjects.
Was there like a school concert, like a winter concert, would you sing?
I never sung at school. I was really shy when I was young. I literally sung in front of my younger sister. And when I was 14 I sung in front of my best friend. And that was pretty much it. My dad was a jazz musician and it took me years and years to sing in front of him because I was so shy. So that would have scared the hell out of me, sorry parents. That would have scared me a lot to sing in front of an audience at that age. I think I started when I was about 17-18.
How did you get discovered as an artist?
Actually my story is really boring. It wasn't one of those go in a mall and sing along and someone walked along and said I'm going to make you a big star. It was never like that with me. I started doing studio work, which is when you go into the studio as a singer and you don't really have a famous name or anything. And you just get a little bit of money and leave your voice there on the tape. That's how I started and that's how I met my producers. And then we started recording the first Cascada songs and that just grew from there.
Have you ever been frustrated that you couldn’t learn a song?
Yeah, there’s definitely moments when you get frustrated. We recently had a few shows where everything went wrong. A microphone just went off, I have to wear earplugs with the music in my ears and that broke and the CD just went off, the song stopped. Everyone started singing in the audience which was good but it didn't help me much. Yeah, that's very frustrating because you're in the middle of the show and you’ve been rehearsing for ages and you want it to go really well. And then it's all mucked up. So, it does happen. But you get over it. That's maybe 5 percent of 100.
Have you ever won any music awards?
We did. We won the World Music Awards, Winter Music Conference, Napstar Award, Yahoo Most Dreams. She's won many awards. I listen off camera. I'm a nightmare with that sort of thing. Not a Grammy yet. But we're working on it.
Do you have any brothers or sisters. And if yes, do they ever get up and say you sing so good?
I do have a lot of brothers and sisters actually. I have one half-brother. He lives in England. And I have three sisters. One half-sister and two sisters who I grew up with. One is a big brainy law student. She’s really into all that. Very academic. One’s a therapist. Has her own family. The other one's a nurse, who's not into music at all. I must say they’ve always been very supportive. They’ve never been jealous and my sister Sally, she actually has quite a good voice herself. She says to me nearly every week she would never want to do my job. She loves sitting in an office and being important. And I don’t mind being a pop star.