Manuel Medrano on Being Succesful as a Songwriter: 'You Have to Be Honest & Clear'

Manuel Medrano
 Jesus Henao/LaBulla PR Agency

Manuel Medrano

Writing songs and achieving success is a challenge for any artist, but for Manuel Medrano, that challenge became real after winning his firsts two Latin Grammys, for best new artist and best singer-songwriter album.

This year, the Colombian songwriter is confirmed to participate at the 2017 Billboard Latin Conferences as part of the "I Write the Songs, The New Generation" panel, to speak about how to be a successful songwriter in the competitive Latin music industry.

"I started to write songs since I was in high school, but I didn't do very well," Medrano tells Billboard. "Then I took it back, I connected a little more, and decided that it would be my profession."

Medrano's biggest project has been his first album, Manuel Medrano, which is a real compilation of those songs that he was writing for many years. In a conversation with Billboard, the Colombian singer/songwriter spoke about how music and his songs changed his life.

What does the composition mean to you?

For me, the songs are a divine gift.  Many people overcome or pass stages in their lives thanks to certain songs. It is like bringing something to those people with my compositions and is definitely something that I love as a songwriter.

What are the perfect ingredients for a song to be successful?

You have to be honest and clear with what you are writing. People want to hear a complete and positive message from your heart.

Your song "Bajo el Agua," already surpassed the 100 million views on YouTube, how do you feel with this?

You don't know the whole process that has had that song. It definitely surprised me. I wrote it many years ago and it connected so much with people. It's a different song, full of love and I'm enjoying its success a lot.

Did you imagine being successful in a short time, with only one album?

Definitely not. Everything with the album has been beautiful; I really do not know how to feel or what to say. But I dreamed it.

What can the audience expect from you during the conferences?

I want to contribute with what I know, what has been my development as a singer during the last two years. But I'm going to learn a lot too.

The Billboard Latin Music Awards are the culmination of the Billboard Latin Music Conference, taking place April 24-27 at the Ritz Carlton Miami Beach. To register, visit

Billboard Latin Music Awards and Conference 2017