Nathaniel Stroman (born May 29, 1963), best known as "Earthquake", is an American actor, voice artist, and comedian. He also hosted a daily radio show on afternoon drive for WBLS.
Earthquake performed a half-hour HBO special as part of the series One Night Stand, which first aired on August 26, 2005. He also had a small role in Kevin Smith's film Clerks II, and a supporting role in the film The Longshots. He had a recurring role as Chris' Uncle Mike, on Everybody Hates Chris. He voiced Root the Rooster in the 2006 CGI film, Barnyard and in the video game of the same title, and continues to do so on the TV series spinoff, Back at the Barnyard.
Nathaniel “Earthquake” Stroman was born on May 29, 1963, in Washington, D.C.. His mother gave him the nickname “Earthquake”. She said: “Any time you take all the precautions not to have a kid, from the diaphragm to .... a condom, and you still have a child, there's nothing else you can name that child but a natural disaster."
Earthquake grew up poor with his mother in a tough southeast neighborhood, and they often didn’t have anything to eat. "You can't have dreams when you're hungry," he pointed out. "That's why when I was in school I used to get F's in my first four classes before lunch." Earthquake was a class clown, but had no real idea that he could make comedy a career. He later bemoaned the fact that no teacher or advisor had ever pointed him in the direction of performing.
He enlisted in the United States Air Force the day after he graduated from high school. Later he explained that he joined the military to get out of his mother’s house. He said, '... Everybody was all saying, Hey, man, you don't want to go in there, people are gonna be hollering at you about everything,' but I'm, like, 'Shoot, I got a woman hollering at me right now, putting her hands on me, and she ain't givin' me no check for it. It can't be no worse!"
Nathaniel Stroman joined the Air Force in an attempt to remove himself from the negative impacts of the community around him. Dodging the many traps of crime and drugs Nathaniel Stroman enlisted in the Air Force the day directly after his graduation. As stated by Nathaniel Stroman to Matt Ehlers of the Raleigh News and Observer “My mother argued with me, hollered at me, and I wasn't getting a check, so how hard could basic training be?”. Stroman would go on to have an eleven year career with the Air Force spending time on bases located in places like Florida, California, and the Japanese Island of Okinawa. Through his hard work and dedication to his cause Stroman was able rise through the ranks all the way to a Sergeant in the Air Force. Despite his dedication to the military Earthquake’s military career ended during the Gulf War of 1991. Stroman refused to participate in a war that he deemed unnecessary. “I didn’t want to go over there and fight for oil” he told Richmond Times-Dispatch. Nathaniel joined the military in an attempt to further his education while serving his country and bettering himself, but once the Persian Gulf War broke out Stroman was not in support of the violence that would soon follow in consequence. Due to Stroman's disapproval of the War he became a conscientious objector and was dishonorably discharged from the Air Force of which he had served 11 years of his life to. The briefly explained his position in his military standing slipping away and feeling isolation and almost pressure to agree with the actions of the United States Military. He stated that he felt that those that were less enthusiastic about the war were isolated and eventually guided towards leaving the military.
Early comedic career
In the early 1990s, Earthquake started off doing gigs in small clubs. By 1993 he co-owned Uptown Comedy Corner in Atlanta's vibrant Buckhead entertainment district. While there he continued to hone his skills as the much sought after house host and featured some of the greatest minds in stand-up. Later he opened a club of his own, Earthquake's Comedy Corner II in Dallas, Tx. and Atlanta, Ga., resepectively. In 1997, Earthquake got his national break when he was asked to join the Russell Simmons Def Comedy Jam Tour.
Earthquake started his career in the Airforce in the talent show “Tops and Blues”. In 2002, Earthquake joined Latham Entertainment Presents Comedy Tour. In 2004, he signed a deal with ABC to create his own sitcom called “Earthquake,” which later fell through, although in 2005 he performed one of his most popular best shows “About Goddamn Time”. In 2007, he appeared in All Star Def Comedy Jam, and in 2008 appeared in with TBS Comedy Festival Lollapalooza. In 2009, Earthquake starred in Shaquille O Neal’s All star Comedy Jam Special (comedy zone). In 2011, he made a guest appearance in TV One: Way Black When show.
Earthquake started off in radio contributing every Tuesday and Thursday on The Steve Harvey Morning Show and has been known to fill-in as a personality while Steve Harvey was on vacation. In 2013, Quake joined 107.5 WBLS as a full-time radio personality weekdays from 3pm to 7pm with Déjà Vu. He left the station in February 2016.
In April 2013, he appeared on ABC’s The View in a special segment of stand-up comedians showcased by the cast of The View as their personal favorites; Quake appeared on the show as the favorite of Comedic Great, Whoopi Goldberg Comedian John Mulaney included About Got Damn Time on his list of his favorite comedy albums, saying, "just trying to mix Spalding Gray and Earthquake and Bernie Mac into some kind of amalgam has been the goal of my career."