Vanessa Manzano is, first and foremost, a singer; however, she is not defined and restricted by the noun singer. As a writer of prose, poetry, and lyrics, she is passionate and sensitive to the human condition. She is introspective and a keen observer of the natural world. She is a searcher in ways that go beyond easy explanation; this informs her musical choices. I came upon her music through a song she composed and recorded with her husband, the multi-instrumentalist Jorge Herrera. Together they are recording an album titled “Fuerte y Claro” (“Loud and Clear”), a collection of songs that can best be described as Latin music: salsa, rumba, bolero, and more. In this interview, I am focusing on Vanessa Manzano the solo artist. When I came upon her YouTube channel, I was captivated by her composition “Mi Vera.” This wide-ranging, profoundly personal conversation is centered on “Mi Vera,” and “Volvé” as well as “Luna Tucumana,” a song made famous by one of her musical role models, Mercedes Sosa. These three songs get at the heart and soul of Vanessa Manzano.
Read the full interview in issue 17 and enjoy the below clips of Vanessa!