Article by Elizabeth Ramanand
Singer and songwriter Victoria Canal is set to play The Iridium on April 21. We caught up with Canal as she stealthily answered some questions over email while attending class at The Clive Davis Institute of Recorded Music at New York University. At 19-years-old she cites Lisa Fischer and Tori Kelly as musical inspirations. Canal also recently teamed up with SZA and a handful of other artists to conquer stereotypes with a fresh rendition of the 1962 Bo Diddley song “You Can’t Judge a Book by the Cover” featured on a Mastercard commercial. Check out our chat with Victoria Canal below:
You have a show coming up at the Iridium, what’s your favorite part about playing New York City?
I love playing NYC because it always feels like the first time – there are always new faces and I’m consistently surprised by the energy and the attention from audiences, knowing each person in the room probably got stuck on the subway getting to me and has his or her own story and reason for being here.
Who were some women that influenced your music and what impact they did they have?
Lisa Fischer is a big vocal influence of mine, her subtleties and melodic choices amaze me. Tori Kelly is another huge one, I love her personality and her willingness to be vulnerable in her songwriting. Emily King, major badass and authentic artist.
You were part of the Mastercard Mix of “Can’t Judge a Book” how was it being part of that project?
It’s awesome to help give a voice to little boys and girls who are part of the differently-abled community and hopefully send the message that it’s really worth using people’s assumptions of what you can and can’t do as fuel to surpass expectations and be your truest, bravest self. Prove them wrong!
Talk about the title of your EP “Into the Pull” and what it means to you.
I’ve always been really hyper-aware of the overwhelming nature of time and life, how it reels you in and suddenly you’re 18 and you’ll never get to be a 12-year-old excited to get a pink highlight in your hair. Into the Pull of life is kind of what that title is supposed to mean – being sucked into the whirlwind of living that’s so instill and confusing and awesome all at the same time.
You’re attending the NYU Clive Davis Institute of Recorded music, how is that experience for you?
I’m actually a freshman at Clive! I’m answering these questions instead of listening to my teacher in class. Whoops.
What was the most challenging part about balancing school and pursuing music as a career?
I’m a freshman in college, so that is very much still a current challenge! Time management is huge. Trying to manage a professional life, a higher education, and mental health/physical wellness is a guessing game. I try to wake up early and get to bed early when possible, and stay on my teachers’ good sides so that they don’t mind if I turn a couple of assignments in a few days late!
What does the rest of 2018 have in store for you?
I’ll be announcing a really exciting tour soon as well as releasing my single “Ebony” on April 12th.
For 14 years, Les Paul played The Iridium every Monday night with his Trio. If he was still around and you could recreate the Les Paul Trio with Les, yourself, and one more musician, who would that be? Why?
D’Angelo. No one knows groove and soul more than him. His chops are crazy!