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Jana Herzen: The Voice and Heart of Motema Music

Roseanna Vitro’s interview with the singer and record company owner

Jana Herzen
Jana Herzen

Jana Herzen switches hats gracefully. As a singer she possesses a warm flexible tone, which serves well her stylistic choices of folk, pop and jazz music. Additionally, she is a composer, guitarist and lyricist whose performances are imaginative and soulful. Many of her concerts feature original material that she renders in duet with bassist Charnett Moffett. Her tunes take you on a journey-from the beaches of Bali to the dangerous turns of “Slippery When Wet.” She delivers all with a twinkle in her eye.

Jana is the CEO and matriarch of Motema Music, one of the fastest growing record labels in jazz and world music. I first met her in my home recording studio in 2009. She was working with my husband, recording engineer Paul Wickliffe. I immediately felt a connection with her; we share an abiding appreciation for great singers, songwriters, lyrics and lyricists.

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