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Janet Robin in 2007
Los Angeles, CA
|Origin||Los Angeles, California, United States|
|Genres||Rock, Electroacoustic, Pop music Americana Blues|
|Occupation(s)||Guitarist, Singer, Songwriter Film and TV Composer|
|Instruments||Vocals, Acoustic Guitar, Electric Guitar, Banjitar|
|Years active||1982 - present|
|Labels||Little Sister Records, Hypertension Music (EU)|
|Associated acts||Lindsey Buckingham, Meredith Brooks, Air Supply, Precious Metal, The String Revolution|
|Past members||Joe Travers, Bryan Beller, Mark Karan, Rick Musalam|
Robin grew up in North Hollywood where she and her older brother Steve began taking acoustic folk guitar lessons at Valley Arts Guitar. When Steve wanted to begin playing electric guitar, the Robins were referred to a North Hollywood music school owned by Delores Rhoads called Musonia School of Music. At Musonia, Robin took electric guitar lessons as the youngest and only female guitar student of Delores's son, Randy Rhoads. At the time, Rhoads was performing in a local L.A. band called Quiet Riot. Robin would go to their shows with her family at the now defunct Starwood in West Hollywood and Palomino Club in North Hollywood. She has said that this exposure had a large influence on her desire to play guitar. Robin continued taking lessons from Rhoads until he joined Ozzy Osbourne's band as lead guitarist.
Robin began performing professionally at the age of 16 in the mid-80's playing guitar in the all-female hard rock band Precious Metal. The band performed several local shows at venues such as FM Station, Club Lingerie, Whisky a Go Go and The Roxy gaining a strong LA following. This exposure brought Precious Metal to the attention of influential KROQ radio disc jockey Rodney Bingenheimer who played their music on his local radio program. Russ Regan, head of Polygram Records, heard Precious Metal on KROQ and signed the band soon afterwards, releasing their debut record Right Here, Right Now in 1985 on Mercury Records. After leaving Polygram, the band was picked up by Capitol Records subsidiary label Chameleon who released their final two albums That Kind of Girl in 1988 and Precious Metal in 1990. While in Precious Metal, Robin wrote songs with members of Heart, Poison and Cheap Trick.
Robin also pursued an acting career at this time with her first role being that of a female guitarist in the TV movie Best of Times starring Nicolas Cage and Crispin Glover. As Precious Metal gained more success, she chose to give up acting and concentrate solely on her music career.
Lindsey Buckingham & Touring
After Precious Metal broke up, Robin started a duo with Precious Metal lead singer Leslie Knauer called Sugar Shack while also picking up session gigs. In 1992, she became a full-time member of Fleetwood Mac guitarist Lindsey Buckingham's band, touring extensively behind his solo album Out of the Cradle. Robin's first gig with Buckingham was a live performance on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno one week after she joined the band. Robin performed with Buckingham until 1994 touring as both a headline act and in support of Tina Turner.
In addition to performing with Buckingham, Robin also appeared as a guitarist for several artists including Meredith Brooks, Michelle Shocked, Alice Peacock and Sarah Bettens. From 2008-2009 she was a touring member of Air Supply.
After several years touring with Buckingham, Robin embarked on a solo career. Influenced by Ani DiFranco putting out records on her own label, Robin began recording and releasing albums on her own imprint, Little Sister Records. In 1998, she recorded and released her first album Open the Door which was produced by Mark Karan of Bob Weir & Rat Dog. After growing a strong local following in Los Angeles, Robin joined Ann & Nancy Wilson of Heart for an acoustic performance which led to a write up in music industry trade publication Radio & Records and earned her industry attention. She continued to record and release her own material expanding her touring up the West Coast and eventually to the East Coast.
In 2007, Robin began working with producers David Bianco and Steve Baughman on an E.P. entitled Days of Summer. Through Baughman she met Czech band November 2 on MySpace and travelled to the Czech Republic to tour with them. This led to subsequent European tours with Robin expanding her touring and fan base to Germany, France and the U.K. She has performed in Europe in support of several artists including Tommy Emmanuel, Midge Ure and Lenka Filipová.
In 2009, Robin met up with producer John Carter Cash to record her album Everything Has Changed. Robin raised $16,000 in fan donations to record the album. Everything Has Changed was released in 2010 by German record label Hypertension Music who she was introduced to by Colin Hay. Robin released the album in the U.S. on Little Sister Records in 2012. In 2013, Robin released her first live recording, "Janet Robin & Band, Live in France," which featured a live show recording at a blues club in France with her French band. The cd was produced and mixed by famed French guitarist, Charlie Fabert.
In 2016, Robin is set to record her next CD again with produced John Carter Cash at Cash Cabin in Nashville. It will be released in May 2016 with a major European tour to follow, and in the fall of 2016 a USA tour.
The Hateful Eight
In January 2015, Robin was hired to coach guitar for lead actress Jennifer Jason Leigh for a scene in Quentin Tarantino's, The Hateful Eight. She was flown to Telluride, Colorado for 2 months on location and then back to Los Angeles for another month of coaching until she was called out on tour in April 2015. Robin tapped a sub to complete the last 4 weeks of coaching. The scene features Leigh playing guitar and singing a traditional Australian folk song (later covered by Bob Dylan), Jim Jones at Botney Bay. Director Tarantino requested a lengthy coaching term in order to help the actress feel comfortable and natural performing guitar since the scene was filmed live.
Film and TV Composing
Robin has composed scores for the short films, "Traces," "War of Art," and "Use me Up." Robin contributed guitar to Michelle Shocked's score for the documentary "Bush's Brain." She has also had several original songs placed in TV shows such as "One Life to Live," "All My Children," "Felicity," "Oprah," and more. The short film "Traces" was directed by Joseph Culp, the son of actor Robert Culp and was premiered at The Hollywood Film Festival and The Palm Springs Film Festival. The short film "Use Me Up" was featured in the Best Shorts Competition, won the Award of Merit in the Women's category in the American Online Film Awards, was selected for the California International Shorts Festival, Festival of Pelagia, the Glendale International Film Festival, the California Women's Film Festival, and the Winter Film Awards, New York City.
The String Revolution
The String Revolution is a new side project started by Robin. It features 4 international guitar players playing mostly original instrumental pieces of all genres, creating a unique "full band" sound. Their EP will be released in 2016 with touring to follow.
Endorsements and Guitars
Robin is endorsed by the following companies:
- Taylor Guitars
- Turner-Renaissance Guitars
- Seymour Duncan Pickups
- Fender Music Instruments
- Gold Tone Instruments
- Audix Microphones
- Gibson Guitars
- Martin Guitars
- Line 6
- Daisy Rock Guitars
- Alfred Music Publishing
In 2008, Robin was put in touch with guitar luthier Rick Turner whom she first met while performing with Lindsey Buckingham. They discussed building a new type of hybrid acoustic-electric guitar that eventually became the Turner-Renaissance Deuce. The guitar features two separate outputs, a D-Tar Piezo pickup for the acoustic sound and a custom designed Seymour Duncan Stag Mag pickup for the electric sound.
- 1998: Open the Door (Renaissance Records)
- 2001: Out From Under (Little Sister Records)
- 2004: After The Flood (Little Sister Records)
- 2007: Days of Summer - EP (Little Sister Records)
- 2010: Everything Has Changed (Hypertension Music)
- 2012: Everything Has Changed (Little Sister Records)
- 2013: Live in France (Little Sister Records)
- Her song Personal Revolution appeared at Girls Night Out, Vol. 5 (2004, Genius Entertainment) compilation CD.
- Robin has co-written songs with several artists including Maia Sharp, Garrison Starr, Ann & Nancy Wilson (Heart), and Sue Ennis.
- Composed the music for the 2012 short films Traces and War of Art
- She has had songs placed on several TV shows including One Life to Live, All My Children and Felicity
- "Janet Robin's Amazing Adventure". Pollstar. Retrieved 5 January 2016.
- "Modern Guitar Magazine". Modern Guitar Magazine. Retrieved 5 January 2016.
- "Right Here, Right Now". AllMusic. Retrieved 5 January 2016.
- Alex Henderson. "That Kind of Girl". AllMusic. Retrieved 5 January 2016.
- Alex Henderson. "Precious Metal". AllMusic. Retrieved 5 January 2016.
- "Exposed: 10 Female Guitarists You Should Know, Part 6". Guitar World. Retrieved 5 January 2016.
- youaresquishy (20 August 2005). "Best of Times (TV Movie 1981)". IMDb. Retrieved 5 January 2016.
- Charlotte Dillon. "Janet Robin". AllMusic. Retrieved 5 January 2016.
- "Hypertension". Retrieved 5 January 2016.
- "The Official Website of Janet Robin". Retrieved 5 January 2016.
- "Janet Robin". IMDb. Retrieved 2015-12-22.
- "The Official Website of Janet Robin". janetrobin.com. Retrieved 2015-12-22.
- "Joseph Culp". IMDb. Retrieved 2015-12-22.
- "Artists". Taylor Guitars. Retrieved 5 January 2016.
- "Artists - Gold Tone Music Group". Gold Tone Music Group. Retrieved 5 January 2016.
- "Daisy Rock Guitars the Girl Guitar Company - Doing whatever it takes to help girls play guitar and enjoy music!". Daisy Rock Guitars the Girl Guitar Company. Retrieved 5 January 2016.
- "Turner Renaissance Guitars - Hand-Built Guitars, Basses & Ukuleles By Rick Turner.". Retrieved 5 January 2016.
- The RS-6 Deuce from Renaissance Guitars. 11 July 2012. Retrieved 5 January 2016 – via YouTube.
- "Open the Door". AllMusic. Retrieved 5 January 2016.
- "Out from Under". AllMusic. Retrieved 5 January 2016.
- "After the Flood". AllMusic. Retrieved 5 January 2016.
- "Traces (2012)". IMDb. 13 October 2012. Retrieved 5 January 2016.
- "War of Art (2012)". IMDb. 29 September 2012. Retrieved 5 January 2016.