Victor Manuelle: "I Identify Myself With Salsa, It's What I Love To Do"
Víctor Manuelle via Facebook.com/victormanuelleonline Víctor Manuelle's love will always and forever be salsa.
If there were one word to describe el Sonero de la Juventud, it would have to be loyal.
Víctor Manuelle has been singing the salsa since 1993. And unlike some of his Latin American counterparts who've changed up their style to transition into mainstream pop, the Puerto Rican salsero has remained faithful to his chosen genre for nearly 20 years.
Now el bolero is celebrating two decades of ritmo y son with the Casi 20 tour. So Crossfade caught up with Manuelle just in time for his Miami stop and spoke with him about the art of salsa, paying homage to Celia Cruz, and immigration reform in America.
Crossfade: You've been traveling a lot, making special TV appearances, getting ready for your tour. And yesterday morning, you put on a performance for the U.S. Senate in D.C. How did that go?
Victor Manuelle: It was a tribute from the Senate. And honestly, it was beautiful. As an artist, it's an honor and it's good to know that you are recognized in your journey. I feel very good and happy.
A lot of salseros have changed up their musical style at times and recorded Latin pop albums or some songs in English, but you haven't. Why not?
Although I've had the opportunity to do many things, the public knows that I identify myself with salsa. It's what I love to do and I believe it's my forte.
You're known as el Sonero de la Juventud, but your musical style has been described as salsa romántica or salsa monga. How would you describe it?
I have found a balance with salsa. My music is very danceable and the lyrics have substance. They are very romantic and always contain some message of romance...but the concept of salsa isn't defined by lyrics, it's defined by rhythm.