Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Natural Selection

Natural Selection was a pop/R&B band from Minneapolis, Minnesota during the 90s. The duo was formed by Elliot Erickson and originally included singer Steve Bryant.

Together, they recorded a remake of Nik Kershaw's hit song "Wouldn't It Be Good." At first, the single was picked up independently by KDWB's Brian Phillips and started to generate some buzz around the Minneapolis and Wisconsin radio scene which brought attention to the band. Steve later left the band and was replaced by Frederick Thomas.

Natural Selection's song "Do Anything" was written & recorded on a 4-track recorder in Minnesota.

The song sat incompleted until Elliot began working on it again in 1989. The rap on the song was originally recorded by Ingrid Chavez, who was a friend of the duo who improvised the rap in the studio.

In 1990, the first version of "Do Anything" with Ingrid's raps became a local hit on Minnesota's WLOL-FM radio station where Elliot worked as a remix engineer at the time.

Once Natural Selection signed a record deal, Ingrid's raps were re-recorded by singer Niki Haris because she was under contract with Prince's Paisley Park Records label at the time.
In November of 1991, the duo released their self-titled debut album on EastWest Records America. The album peaked at #13 on Billboard's Heatseekers Albums chart and both Elliot & Frederick produced the album themselves.
"Do Anything" became a pop hit, peaking at #2 on the Billboard Hot 100, #26 on Billboard's Hot Dance Music/Maxi-Singles Sales chart and #69 on the U.K. Singles chart.
Their follow-up single "Hearts Don't Think (They Feel)" peaked at #28 on the Billboard Hot 100. In 1992, Elliot and Frederick went their separate ways.

Frederick kept the group's name alive informally and added two new members John Swan and Shaun Ware. They had a record deal with SBK Records, but when the label fell apart, so did the group.

Several years later, Natural Selection reunited and independently made an eight-song recorded entitled "Infinity."

These days, Frederick (now Frederick O'Neil Thomas) is still active in the music business. As for Elliot, it's unknown what he is up to today.

To see Frederick's Facebook page, go to:

To see the music video for "Do Anything," go to:

To see the music video for "Hearts Don't Think (They Feel)," go to:

[updated on 05/31/13]

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