After being given 24-hours notice that the school she worked for was closing for good, Boston-born singer songwriter Vanessa Pottiger interpreted the shocking news as a swift kick in the butt from God himself to finally pursue a career as an artist. 

After graduating with a degree in music performance from the University of Valley Forge in 2014, she began teaching voice, piano and songwriting lessons, and became a mentor for many of her students after hearing their stories of bullying, abuse, violence, depression and suicide. Teaching brought deep meaning, but hearing her students stories stirred up a desire to change culture on a larger level. She had been afraid of pursuing performance full-time, but something inside her knew she had to try. 

A diagnosis of vocal nodules as well as laryngopharyngeal reflux caused Vanessa to doubt whether becoming a performing artist was even possible. But after a year of rest and healing, Vanessa could no longer silence the voice that was struggling to be heard. From this place of silence, her first single "Sugar Don't Make Me Lie" was written. The school where she taught closed only a few months later. 

Despite the upbeat tempo and the song's danceability, Sugar Don't Make Me Lie is a heartfelt song about the desire to break free from normalcy and routine, with lyrics that shift between insecurity and confidence about taking steps into the unknown. The song was recorded at Real Recording Studio in Bethlehem, PA and was produced by Matt Dougherty. The single is available on all major platforms.  

Her music video for Sugar Don't Make Me Lie caught the attention of the producers at American Idol, where she was given an opportunity to audition for the show's executive producers. She was also selected as a finalist in PBS's Celebration of Music competition.  

Vanessa's desire in moving forward with her music is that her songs will open a door to meaningful conversations with millennial and gen z women about love, spirituality, self-discovery, sexuality, abuse and freedom. 

Vanessa is still raising money to fund the rest of her debut album. If you would like to make a donation towards her work, please visit

Press Photos

Sample Track


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