Vanja Sky is Croatia’s answer to Sheryl Crow and Norah Jones.
An artistic career could hardly develop more rapidly. Five years after she learnt to play the guitar, the Croatian, born in 1993, recorded her debut album with renowned artists from the international blues scene. The blues was originally the initial spark for the young confectioner from the small coastal town of Umag. After attending a concert by Croatian guitar hero Denis Makin and his band The Screaming Wheels, Vanja, who was barely of age, became obsessed with the idea of finding her destiny in blues and rock. She first moved to Zagreb to immerse herself in the local music scene. She met the British musician Laurence Jones when he made a guest appearance there. Vanja also played throughout the country as an acoustic duo with guitarist Eduard “Jimmy” Matesic, one of the country’s most distinguished string artists.
Vanja Sky plays on Saturday, 22th June, at the 9th blacksheep Festival
The highlights of her lightning career include collaborations with the likes of Bernard Allison and Mike Zito, her debut album “Bad Penny” recorded at Bessie Blues Studios in Stantonville, Tennessee, followed by the second, much rockier album “Woman Named Trouble”.
In 2022, Vanja Sky released a duet with singer Carl Sentance, who is on the microphone for the successful Scottish hard rock band Nazareth and the solo band of Deep Purple keyboardist Don Airey. The title “Müha – See You Again” refers to the transience of life and the appreciation we should develop for what we have in the here and now. Vanja was inspired to write the song by the death of a friend from the Croatian music scene. Vanja released her album “reborn” in mid-2023. For the album and on all tours, Vanja worked with German guitarist Guenter Haas, who has recorded albums and toured worldwide with Schiller, Gregorian, Sarah Brightman, Udo Lindenberg, Cindy Lauper, Scotty Moore and many others. With “reborn”, Vanja has arrived on the rock scene without losing her roots in the blues. The title stands for a new beginning, rebirth and further development.
Ten Years After drummer on Vanja Skys’ new Album “Reborn”
In addition to eight newly written songs, the ten songs also include two cover versions of legendary songs from rock history, in which members of the original bands took part as guests. To mark the 50th anniversary of the title “I’d Love To Change The World”, Vanja invited Ric Lee, drummer, Woodstock legend and founding member of Ten Years After, into the studio to re-record the title with him. Vanja traditionally continues her homage to Rory Gallagher on “reborn”.
There has been a song by him on each of her albums to date. Gerry McAvoy took over the bass part on the new recording of “I Take What I Want”. He played alongside Rory Gallagher for over 20 years. Vanja Sky has absorbed the influence of Rory Gallagher, Albert King and Stevie Ray Vaughan and bridges the gap between the old guard of blues traditionalists and a young audience.
With a vintage 80s sound reminiscent of Joan Jett, Vanja sings her songs with the same poignancy and dedication as Chrissie Hynde of The Pretenders. Between her own tours and sessions with Humble Pie guitarist Clem Clempson, Colosseum singer Chris Farlowe and “The God of Hellfire” Arthur Brown, as well as supporting rock legends such as Suzi Quatro, UFO and Woodstock icons Canned Heat, her live performance is evolving.
- Vanja Sky – Guitar, Vocals
- Guenter Haas – Guitar
- Artjom Feldtser – Bass
- Sebastian Michael Harder – Drums
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