The band on every indie music fan’s lips — and playlists — is Wild Belle, the brother-sister duo composed of Chicago area natives Natalie and Elliot Bergman. Since releasing their first single, “Keep You,” the two have rapidly risen through the industry ranks, captivating music fans with their unique blend of jazz, folk, soul, afrobeat and trip-hop, all punctuated by Natalie’s mesmerizing vocals. “It’s a blend of influences and a soulful dance party,” says the singer of the band’s sound, which is anchored by Elliot’s multi-instrumental talents. It’s safe to say that 2012 was the band’s year: The duo played jam-packed shows at Coachella and South by Southwest, has been written up in Vogue and the New York Times, toured the United States and Europe, and recently appeared on “Conan.” And 2013 will prove just as fruitful: Wild Belle’s first album, “Isles,” will be released by Columbia Records in March.
If practice makes perfect, their success makes total sense: Natalie, 23, and Elliot, 31, have been making music together in some capacity since they were kids. The Bergmans come from a creative family (sister Elise is a Chicago-based fashion designer with her own line; brother Bennet, who lives in California, is a poet/writer) and family sing-alongs helped hone the siblings’ skills. Today, both siblings play multiple instruments and contribute to the songwriting process. “We have a dynamic relationship,” says Natalie. “We trust each other completely.”
Elliot is based in Brooklyn and Natalie goes back and forth between New York and her sister’s Bucktown apartment, and the band is often in Chicago to visit friends and family. On Dec. 9 Wild Belle will take the stage at the Metro — a rite of passage for hundreds of up-and-coming bands. Throughout it all, Natalie and Elliot are just enjoying the journey.
“There are so many moments every day where I think, ‘we’re doing what we love and we get to see the beauty of the world,’ ” says Natalie. “I find myself thanking God a lot.”
Natalie wakes up slowly with coffee and the New York Times, while Elliot rallies early to check out the eclectic goods at Wolff’s flea market, located in the Allstate Arena parking lot.
The siblings both try to visit Grace Church, located at Nettlehorst School (3252 N. Broadway) in Lakeview.
Brunch at El Barco (1035 N. Ashland) in Wicker Park. “Giant margaritas and the best red snapper in Chicago make this a Bergman family favorite,” says Elliot.
Next up, a stop at Dusty Groove record store, then Natalie heads to vintage shop Kokorokoko (1323 N. Milwaukee), Alcala’s Western Wear (1733 W. Chicago) or Robin Richman (2108 N. Damen) to stock her stylish wardrobe.
The creative juices flow: Elliot practices yoga and plays his saxophone while Natalie creates something with her hands, be it a collage or playing the piano.
The evening agenda includes tacos at Big Star (1531 N. Damen) and drinks with sister Elise at The Charleston (2076 N. Hoyne). If things are still rocking, Natalie and her friends head to honky-tonk joint Carol’s (4659 N. Clark) to dance the night away.
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