Harri Lehtinen began his career as a drummer when he was 13. At the age of 16, he applied to study percussion with Esko Vuorinen. He joined a touring dance orchestra until eventually entering the Tampere Conservatory, graduating as a teacher of percussion in 1996 and gaining a master's in 1998. Lehtinen studied at the University of Toronto as a pupil of musicians of the percussion ensemble Nexus. He gained his Ph.D. in music in spring 2016 at the University of the Arts' Sibelius Academy. He is now a lecturer in percussion at the Tampere Music Institute and also gives masterclasses around the world. He has worked with most of the Finnish orchestras and performed as soloist with the Tampere Philharmonic Orchestra, the Pori Sinfonietta, the Chamber Orchestra of Lapland and the Pyynikki Sinfonia. He also plays with Tampere Raw (a chamber orchestra), the Osuma Ensemble, and in many chamber and small ensembles. He works in theatres and records both classical and popular music.