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Singer/songwriter Janita was born in Helsinki, Finland in 1978, and began playing piano as a child. Influenced by soul and R&B, she began her performing career at age 13, and released two Finnish-language albums in the early '90s. These albums made Janita a pop star in her homeland, and she relocated to Brooklyn at age 17. Her English-language debut, Believer, appeared in 1997. Janita signed to Sony's 550 imprint and recorded a self-titled album in 1998, but the album was never released in America. The independently released I'll Be Fine (released as Tunteita in Finland) appeared three years later, and was her American debut. Her music had evolved into an adult contemporary, smooth jazz-influenced sound by this time, and her 2005 album Seasons of Life, aided by a cover of Depeche Mode's "Enjoy the Silence," was a success on American smooth jazz radio. Haunted followed in 2010, and featured a more alternative-influenced sound, influenced by a meeting with Meshell Ndegeocello. Janita became an American citizen in 2013, and released Didn't You, My Dear? in 2015. ~ Jason Ankeny

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December 28, 1978 in Helsinki, Finland

Years Active:

'90s, '00s