Drums & Percussion


About Natalie

Natalie DePergola found her first groove on the drums at just six years old. With only a few lessons under her belt, she was confident, excited, and eager to hit the stage. By 9 years old, she was playing drums at school talent shows, in her church, and sitting in with local bands playing and nailing songs by Led Zeppelin, Stevie Wonder, The Commodores, Sheryl Crow, Wild Cherry, and more.

Growing up on the west coast of Florida, Nat caught the attention of John Blackwell, known widely as the drummer for Prince, Justin Timberlake, and Pattie LaBelle. He quickly pulled her under his wing. Natalie studied with John from the ages of 11 to 17 years old. John’s influence and mentorship had a profound effect on how Nat plays today.

At just 14, with the advice of many, including John Blackwell, Natalie entered and placed in the top 3 two years in a row in the global all-female drum competition “”Hit like a Girl”” in the under-18 category. It was at that time that she got published in Drum Magazine, and a few years later she was featured on the “”Gospel Chops”” YouTube channel and the “”Modern Drummer”” blog. When John Blackwell passed away just a few years ago, Drum Magazine published an article citing her as his final and last prodigy student.

Natalie currently endorses Ddrum, Zildjian cymbals, Evans drumheads, and Vic Firth.

As a seasoned drummer with experience both on stage and in the studio, her music crosses many genres, and her knowledge stretches far across many disciplines within the music industry. With deep roots in funk, jazz fusion, and hip-hop, her strengths include a magnetic approach to collaborating with musicians and artists, and she is sought after often outside her home state. Natalie is an advocate for music education, fusing music and art with community, empowering women in and through music, and keeping diversity and inclusivity at the forefront. Projects that illustrate that advocacy include a range of self-procured projects like “Heightened Senses”, a non-profit organization whose sole mission is to bring art, music, and community together for monthly events; “Noisy Women”, a drum clinic empowering women of all ages, ranging from 16 to 56, to break the barriers for women in music and learn to play drums; as well as associating with and participating in funded projects developed by the Grammy Museum in “The Grammy Museum’s Music Revolution Project”.

She is invited annually to speak and play for the Great American Teach-In and has recurrent speaking engagements at the Girls Rock Summer Camp. Nat is most proud of “Heightened Senses”, which is a non-profit organization created by Natalie and two of her colleagues.

The sole purpose of that non-profit is to produce monthly events combining music, art, and culture with a focus on important causes and themes like empowering women entrepreneurs and featuring the work of artists who might not otherwise get that kind of exposure. Besides performing and recording, this has become her lifelong mission.

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