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Second Cup Café: Toby Lightman

Toby Lightman is a New York-based singer-songwriter who's currently out with her sophomore album and kicking off a tour with "American Idol" winner Taylor Hicks.

She visits Second Cup Café to play her new single, "My Sweet Song."

Lightman grew up in Philadelphia, where she began playing violin when she was just 6. She began singing in high school, and picked up the guitar and started writing songs in college.

After graduating from the University of Wisconson, Lightman headed to New York looking for her big break.

In a span of six months, Lightman signed with a management company, worked up a demo with a top producer and signed with Atlantic Records' Lava imprint.

Lightman's debut album, "Little Things," was released in 2004 and included the single "Devils and Angels," which peaked at No. 17 on the Billboard Hot Adult Top 40 singles chart.

Following the album release, Lightman went out on the road. She opened for Howie Day, Gavin DeGraw, O.A.R., Marc Broussard and, for one special night, Prince.

The experience of touring and performing influenced her to use more live instrumentation in her sophomore album, "Bird On A Wire," released last summer.

"After being on the road for a year and a half," Lighthouse says in her official biography. "I fell in love with the live aspect of performing, and relying on humans rather than programmed computers. It was then I decided I wanted my music to become more organic."

The soulful singer will be opening up for last year's "American Idol" winner, Taylor Hicks, on his upcoming tour beginning April 3 in Boston.