Categories: Interviews

Wanting Vanessa Dauou

Sit down, Madonna. The steamiest song in years is “The Long Tunnel of Wanting You,” the leadoff track on Vanessa Daou’s debut Lotus album, “Zipless.”

The seductive “Long Tunnel,” like the album’s nine other tracks, was a poem penned by “Fear of Flying” author Erica Jong. Daou’s sultry voice and the absorbing jazz-trance arrangements by her husband, keyboardist Peter Daou, are brimming with passion. But is mainstream America ready for such a seductive reading?

“It’s not a big deal to me,” Daou said recently from her New York home. “First of all, it’s Erica’s poetry. This is what it’s all about. And we tried to keep it in a nonchalant context that she has it in.”

The adult themes haven’t scared off the bookstore chain Barnes & Noble, which Daou said is putting “Zipless” on its listening wall. And Paper magazine has latched on to the album, to the point of offering copies to all its advertisers, like trendy hot spots in New York, so they will play it and spread the word.

“The music captures Erica’s intentions,” Daou said, “and that’s why I’m happy. It captures the mood and melancholy tone of her poems. I don’t find her poems just erotic. I think there’s a lot of sadness in them.”

Before she married Peter, Daou said she was friends with his sister, and through her, was introduced to the free-spirited Jong.

“Peter’s related to Erica, but it’s not something I go around telling everybody about,” she said. “It’s not actually how the whole thing happened. We met at a party and just started talking. There was this total connection. She was into my aura, so from then on we hit it off and have wanted to work together for years.”

BWF (before we forget): “Zipless” was reissued by MCA-affiliated Krasnow Enterainment, but the label soon folded. … After the 1996 release of “Slow Burn,” Daou’s third solo album, “Plutonium Glow,” was released in November 1997 on her own label, Daou Music. The LP is available on her Web site @ www.daoumusic.com.

Gerry Galipault

Gerry Galipault debuted Pause & Play online in October 1997. Since then, it has become the definitive place for CD-release dates — with a worldwide audience.

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