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Erja Lyytinen

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In the past few years, Erja Lyytinen has taken the international music scene by storm. She’s a young, talented singer/songwriter and exceptional guitarist who plays everything from dobro to slide guitar. “But the guitar – or any instrument for that matter – is there just to support the story that I’m always trying to tell with a song”, she says.

Erja was born to a musical family in Kuopio, a little town in the middle of Finland. At the age of 15 she was performing with her parents – singing and at first playing the violin and later the electric guitar. “People always wonder how a girl picked up the guitar. But being from a musical family – my mother is a bassist and my father a guitarist – I don’t think that’s a far stretch,” Erja laughs.

Erja’s second album Wildflower (Bluelight Records), which she also co-produced, was officially released in June 2003 at one of Finland’s biggest festivals, Puistoblues. “It was great,” Erja enthuses. “We got to open for Koko Taylor and Bonnie Raitt. They’ve both had a huge influence on me.” Erja has often been compared to Raitt and the Finnish magazine Blues News once hailed her as the Bonnie Raitt of Finland.”I think the main reason why some people compare me to Bonnie is that we both are women and play slide guitar. But naturally, it was fantastic when I finally got the chance to meet her. She turned out to be a really nice person.”

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