- Toini Knudtsen
- Born: Norway, 1968
- Vocals, rhythm guitar
Toini, the lady of the band, was strongly influenced in her childhood by rock’n’roll and rockabilly music. The daughter of a devoted record collector, she sang along with records from the fifties and the sixties as she learned to walk. Blues, country and rock’n’roll has indelibly shaped her musical taste and performance. At 13 she got her first guitar and was soon fronting her first group (the girls-only “Katz”).
After leaving her home in the small coastal town of Kristiansund in her late teens, Toini moved to Oslo, where she started singing in jazz clubs, exploring her love for the music of Bessie Smith and Billie Holiday. She also did some gigs at rockabilly festivals in Sweden and England backed by local musicians. Back in Norway she met the guys who were to become the Tomcats. In 1991 they did their first gig ever at Beach Club in Oslo, and the lineup has not changed since that day – apart from the addition of steel man Sveinung.
Toini has impressed audiences with her sweet and powerful singing, and her songwriting is colored by her rockabilly roots. She loves books and languages and is inspired by a strong interest for digging in history’s musical vaults. She spends a lot of time reading musical biographies and working as a DJ, specializing in – whaddyaknow – classic rock’n’roll and R&B.