Vicki Vann

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Vicki Vann
Photo of Country singer Vicki Vann.
Vicki Vann performing in Los Angeles, CA. (June 2011)
Background information
Birth name Victoria Denise Vann
Born (1980-07-14) July 14, 1980 (age 35)
Origin Los Angeles, California US
Genres Country, Country Soul, Southern Soul
Occupation(s) Singer, Songwriter, Record Producer, Model, Dancer, Actress, Editor-in-Chief, Brand Ambassador, Spokesperson
Years active 1998–present
Labels Red Canyon
Website www.vickivann.com

Victoria "Vicki" Vann (born Victoria Vann, July 14, 1980) is an American country music artist, model and actress. Her father was born in Mississippi and was one of the original founding members of the Grammy Award Winning Gospel Group, Mighty Clouds of Joy. Her mother, whose family origin is of Native American and German descent worked as a print model for print ads as well as television. Vicki Vann is often referred to as the Cinderella of country music and was chosen to appear as a featured artist in a Country Music Television documentary called "Waiting in the Wings." The documentary focuses on the ongoing struggles of the African American music artists in the country music industry.[1]

Early Years[edit]

Victoria Vann was born in Los Angeles, California. She grew up among the foothills and beaches, spending time between Southern California and The Hawaiian Islands, in what she calls a "Creole, Native American, Indian, Dutch, English and a sliver of German and Brazilian heritage". As a young girl, she was exposed to various types of music, such as gospel, jazz, and country, however, her love for country music grew very strong. Vicki veered toward country music after being exposed to many other genres of music at an early age.[2] Among her musical influences are Sarah Vaughan, Nancy Wilson, Aretha Franklin, Elvis Presley, Amy Grant, Crystal Gayle, Dolly Parton, Diana Ross, Donny Hathaway, Barbra Streisand, Karen Carpenter, Linda Ronstadt, Marie Osmond, Reba McEntire, Joni Mitchell, Patsy Cline, and Loretta Lynn. But perhaps her greatest musical influence of all was her very own dad, despite the fact that her father, a Baptist minister, was a member of the world famous gospel group, Mighty Clouds of Joy. Recognizing his daughter’s talent, Vicki's dad wanted her to become the next Aretha Franklin, but the talented beauty had other plans.[3] While attending in high school she was named Homecoming Princess and voted most shy among her high school classmates. Vann later attended Occidental College where she earned a degree in psychology, and graduate school soon followed where she earned a Master's degree in Education from Azusa Pacific University. While at college she discovered her love of acting. It helped her cope with her overwhelming shyness she suffered throughout her childhood and teenage years. Following graduation Vicki decided to become a kindergarten teacher while she worked at perfecting her craft. “I do love kids! They’re so honest and they're all so beautiful to me, and always willing to listen to me sing! I felt fulfilled knowing that I had a chance to help shape the future of these kids. I made a difference by being their first official teacher!” While teaching school by day, Vicki was gigging with her band at night and on weekends all around Southern California at street fairs, festivals, and speedways in addition to going on multiple auditions. She performed in Nashville on her first trip to Tennessee and set up a booth at Fan Fair, currently CMA Music Festival. She gathered up some players and traveled to Zürich, Switzerland to play the 38 Days of Country Music Festival there alongside Pam Tillis and Neal McCoy. After such a hectic performing schedule for about four years, Vicki said ‘Goodbye’ to her kindergarten students and decided to pursue her singing career full-time.[4] Vicki Vann had decided to focus on singing and pursue a professional career in country music. "I fell in love with country music because most country songs have a story. They have a beginning, a middle, and an end. I'm a story-teller and so it fits. I really get into the lyrics.....they can make me laugh, and they can make me cry."[5]

Music career[edit]

Vicki Vann performing in Switzerland

Vicki Vann songs are beautifully crafted to reflect an effortless, dynamic, and soothing voice that displays an artist who is deeply rooted in traditional sounds as well as current country music trends. It's a pleasure to just sit back and listen. She sings with an unmistakable clear diction which is rare these days in music.[6] Vicki Vann is one of country music’s hottest new artists.

She released her first solo CD Miracle in 1999.

In 2002, she released her second CD, the self titled Vicki Vann, and followed that up by traveling to Europe to perform a prominent show in Switzerland, called "The Only 39 Day Country Festival In The World", at the Schützenhaus Albisgütli in Zurich, Switzerland. Since 2002, the popular music festival has been renamed, and is now known as "The Internationales Country Music Festival".[7]

Her CD titled Dream Catcher was released to popular acclaim and her single This Is Where I Get Off moved up the charts in 30 countries. Vicki Vann is one of the most requested female artists on the international country music scene. Vicki's CD Dream Catcher was one of 2005’s hottest country music releases. During an interview she was asked what it was like to have CMT's (Country Music Television) cameras following her around when she appeared in the documentary Waiting In The Wings. "I was tickled pink! I wanted them to follow me everywhere! I thought, how cool is this to have cameras shooting me as I go about my day, having coffee, talking to my doggie, puttin’ my make up on, getting ready for a gig, etc. It was all very surreal. I told myself to remember that feeling because that doesn’t come along too often in one’s lifetime. I savored it for every moment."[8] In a collection of African American contributions to country music listening to these compilations becomes a game of rethinking what country music is. Can you hear the country in Ruth Brown’s rhythm and blues version of the country standard “Tennessee Waltz”? Can you hear a Merle Haggard type twang in the voice of Stoney Edwards on “Honky Tonk Heaven”? Or conversely, can you hear the “soul,” (which is to say “blackness”) in the honky-tonk piano and pedal steel of Vicki Vann’s “You Must Think My Heart Has Swinging Doors”?[9] Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum member Charley Pride speaks candidly about launching his career during the civil rights movement of the 1960s during an interview for the new CMT documentary, Waiting in the Wings: African-Americans in Country Music. While the 90-minute program highlights more than a century of contributions to country music by African-Americans, it also questions why few have become successful country artists. Looking to the future, Waiting in the Wings showcases five young African-American artists, of which include vocalist Vicki Vann.[10]

Editorial career[edit]

BIN Magazine[edit]

Victoria Vann at WSWA Convention Las Vegas, Nevada, 2014

Vann joined Beverage Industry News Magazine, BIN, as an editor in 2000. She worked as a journalist, and coordinator of editorial material, as well as a host for video projects and short films representing products featured in the magazine while assisting Beverage Media Group, BMG, in New York City, which consists of 35 beverage publications across the United States, all servicing the United States beverage, beer, wine and spirits industry, before being appointed to Editor-in-Chief of BIN Magazine in 2005.[11]

Drink Style Magazine[edit]

Vann created a sister publication to Beverage Industry News Magazine that is consumer slanted called Drink Style Magazine. It is a quarterly published publication with the first issue in January, 2016. The magazine features expert, in-depth information about leading products in wine, beer, spirits and cocktails from around the world, all with eye-popping images and engaging stories. Readers will be able to go on wine vineyard tours, meet wine producers, learn what it means to be a wine sommelier, and get user-friendly information about top vintages, regions, varietals and styles. Visit new and pioneering craft breweries and discover the best beers to drink in any season, in any setting, from hoppy ales to session beers to sip during those long sports matches to what’s on draft at the newest craft beer destinations. Readers can enjoy pulling up a stool to have a snack at the hottest cocktail bar openings around the world, and keep up with creative mixology trends, meet bar personalities and find new and exotic ingredients for assemblage. The magazine also consists of traveling behind the scenes to distilleries and helps the reader stay ahead of the latest spirits releases while keeping the back bar up to date, from high-profile portfolios as well as niche brands. The pages consist of the simple art of learning how to wine and dine in top destinations from the most coveted street carts to swank venues. The reader has the opportunity to become the host with the most, using state of the art tips and recipes for home entertainment and enjoyment. [12]

Other ventures[edit]

Araceli Marigold Liqueur[edit]

Vann created Araceli Spirits, LLC., in 2013, which is a company created to introduce unique spirits and beverages. [13] The company was started with the introduction of Araceli Marigold Liqueur, the world's very first liqueur of its kind, which is available to consumers at stores and online outlets throughout the United States. Araceli Marigold Liqueur is a vision that was created by Victoria. She serves as owner and brand ambassador of the brand. The liqueur is a tribute to the Hispanic traditional holiday; El Día de los muertos, and pays tribute to the sacred marigold flower, honoring the celebration and love of people and life.[14]

Araceli Marigold Liqueur
Victoria Vann Patron Tequila event

Liquor Rank[edit]

In 2015 Vann created an evaluation system as the 21st Century award for quality and credibility called Liquor Rank. It exists to provide the definitive last word on spirits and beverage evaluation and provide you limitless opportunities to market your brand. Each product is reviewed under ideal tasting conditions by a panel of experts of which Vann is a seat member, who know what they and ultimately consumers, are looking for. Each product submitted to Liquor Rank is evaluated and ranked in blind tastings ensuring your rank is bias free. Beer wine and spirits industry trade buyers and consumers recognize and respond to the value of Liquor Rank's accolades and scores, setting itself apart from over saturated liquor competitions that will hand over a medal to almost anyone who enters, Liquor Rank is different; it's the last word on quality. A favorable Liquor Rank is easily and immediately recognized as a symbol of achievement as it was earned via the ultimate definition of balanced spirits evaluation. Your brand truly earns its score, it doesn't just get awarded a medal for showing up.

Victoria has said this about how Liquor Rank works, "Literally, you take a number, and we all know numbers are useful. They help us count; our money, our time, and just where we stand in the world. In the world of selling more liquor it is your Liquor Rank that counts. You put your heart and soul into this spirit, now it's time to tell everyone just how good it is. Your Liquor Rank is based on your product and your product alone. It's not about how you stack up against the next guy, not what another category is doing in terms of increasing their sales and market penetration, but, quite simply your Liquor Rank reflects the positive qualities your liquid brings to the glass. Liquor Rank is the defining number that, at a glance, allows buyers and consumers to know just what to expect when they pick up your bottle. Like well respected wine industry ratings systems Liquor Rank is based on a 20 point scale, set from 80-100. Your product is judged on its merits; taste, texture, color, aroma, mixability, and price. All of these factors are considered by our panel of experts."[15]

Personal life[edit]

Vann is a Christian and believes that her faith in God is her lifeline. She says her faith in Jesus Christ and her music are always with her. She has said, "My faith in God means everything to me. Music is also a very essential part of who I am. Music gives life, music heals, and music saves souls. It is through the universal language of music that gives us all faith, hope, and love for one another." [16] Victoria speaks in her native language of English along with Spanish, French, a little Portuguese, and German. She is interested in world history and culture, and she frequently studies the history, culture and languages of the countries she visits. She often goes by her Spanish name, Araceli, (Spanish pronunciation: [aɾaˈseli]}, which in Spanish, the meaning of the name Araceli is: Altar of Heaven.[17]

Discography[edit]

Main article: Vicki Vann discography

Albums

  • 1999: Miracle
  • 2002 Vicki Vann
  • 2005 Dream Catcher
  • 2008 Merry Christmas With Love
  • 2011 Reckless Heart

Notes[edit]

References[edit]

[1] [2] [3] [4] [5] [6] [7]

  1. ^ Senyah, Anir. Music Sheet: The Cinderella of Country Music is Waiting in the Wings, "Blackflix.com", Denver, Colorado, Retrieved on 2010-08-18.
  2. ^ Wickedsalvation. Vicki Vann, U.S.A., October 2009. Retrieved on 2010-08-18.
  3. ^ Vicki Vann Review, March 19, 2004. Retrieved on 2010-08-18.
  4. ^ Johnson, Gary. Vicki Vann - Country Music Goddess, "Black Men In America.com", Retrieved on 2010-08-18.
  5. ^ Richardson, Thomas. More Dirty Laundry: The Soul of Black Country, "Black Grooves.org", Germany, 7 November 2008. Retrieved on 2010-08-18.
  6. ^ Documentary Highlights African-Americans in Country Music, "CMT News", 27 February 2004. Retrieved on 2010-08-18.
  7. ^ Spann, Angela."Funny, She Doesn't Look Like A Country Singer: This Sexy Hot Mama Is Out To Challenge The Status Quo", "Prince.org", Retrieved on 2010-08-29.

External links[edit]