Anthony Cruz (Natural Elements) Interview
Anthony Cruz is an emcee from Harlem, NY. Growing up in a diverse neighborhood, he was exposed to many different cultures and listened to both rock & roll and hip hop. While consistently listening to college radio shows, he finally called up to rap and was invited to the station afterwards by DJ Mayhem. Anthony was introduced to Swigga Da Don (formerly L-Swift) and later to Mr. Voodoo and Charlemagne in 1995, who all began recording together as Natural Elements. The group had already released their first 12″, “The EP”, a year prior was produced by Charlemagne. They earned notoriety for their freestyle sessions on WKCR’s Stretch & Bobbito show, The Underground Railroad, and WNYU’s The Halftime Show. In 1996, Anthony and Swigga released “NYC/Hey Hey Hey” as a side project under the duo name 2Face. In 1998, Natural Elements released their first official single “2 Tons/Live It Up”. Ten years later, the compilation album 1999: 10 Year Anniversary was released in 2009 with several tracks from their unreleased album due to record label issues. In 2014, the group released The NEp with a full-length album to follow. Anthony has also focused on a solo career with albums like Vaudeville Spit (2010) and Fear & Loathing In New York City (2012).