Vanessa Denae Olivarez (born April 7, 1981) in Sugar Land, Texas is an American singer, songwriter and actor. She is the vocalist, songwriter and autoharpist for the country band Granville Automatic, has written songs for the country duo Sugarland, and was in the Top 12 of the second season of the television series American Idol in 2003. Later that year, she released a single, 'The One', which peaked at number nine on the Canadian charts. In 2004 she played Tracy Turnblad, the lead role in the Canadian version of Hairspray, for which she was nominated for a Dora Award. Olivarezs friends talked her into auditioning in 2002 for the second season of American Idol. She performed Irene Cara's 'Out Here On My Own' in the semi-finals. During a following round where contestants write their own numbers, Olivarez impressed the judges with her song 'The Only Thing Special About You Is Me'. She moved into the top 32 contestants of the season.
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