When Mical Whitaker, creator of the ONE series, asks you to participate, you just can’t say no. So when he approached Robin Holmes-Lanier, she says, “Of course, I accepted.”
A native of Brooklet, Holmes-Lanier was educated in the Bulloch County school system, graduating from Southeast Bulloch High School. She went on to attend Albany State University, majoring in Early Childhood Education.
A singer and songwriter, Holmes-Lanier opened Baby Grand Music Studio, where she teaches music to both children and adults, and often stages productions to showcase their talents. Holmes-Lanier has always had a passion and love for music, and she has played the piano and keyboard for church choirs, and has sang in choirs and groups, as well as solo, all over the Southeast. She is a former member of Voices of Distinction, and toured with the gospel group.
But she says it’s an altogether different thing for her to be in the spotlight alone.
“I am not one to be in the spotlight like that,” she said. “I love to just feature other people. It’s going to be different. For me to be out front at all times is going to be a little different.”
Although she is a songwriter, Holmes-Lanier says she won’t be performing any of her own original music, but there will be familiar songs that she is known for. She says she’s planning to sing “comfortable” songs for herself and for those singing with her during her performance at the Emma Kelly Theater on March 5.
She will be joined with other singers for some of the songs, including one special song featuring Holmes-Lanier and Josalin Joseph, one of her students at Baby Grand. Joseph has been a student at Baby Grand since she was 4, and is now a recording artist who travels to Atlanta regularly to work. But she continues to return to work with Holmes-Lanier.
“I’m still pouring into her as far as her vocals,” she said. “And she will be performing with me on a special song.”
One of the songs that audiences can look forward to hearing is “Order My Steps,” which Holmes-Lanier is known for singing. She says that she predominantly sings gospel music, and this song is one that she patterns her life by.
“God has to order the steps for us,” she said.
She is preparing for the big night by drinking lots of water and trying to stay out of the weather, to protect her voice. She’s been spending time in the Baby Grand studio as well, with her backup singers, conditioning her voice. She’s also listening to music and meditating to prepare her mind and spirit.
“My spirit has to be connected to everything I’m doing,” she said. “It’s quite different when you’re asked to sing, and I am, all the time, singing somewhere. But normally, you’re going to sing one, maybe two songs, and you’re done, you know? But when you are the sole performer, you have quite a few songs to sing. You have to be really prepared for that. It’s a lot of singing.”
Holmes-Lanier is a soprano, but she can sing tenor and alto as well. But she says audiences can certainly expect to hear a “few high notes.”
She also says that audiences can also expect to walk away from her performance with hope, and the selections she has made for that evening were chosen with that in mind.
“I do believe that these songs will go along with what we are facing in the world today. The pandemic, to me, it says, hold on,” she said. “Just to keep that hope and that spirit lifted, and knowing that these things we’re facing now, they’re here, but they will pass. There will be a time that they will pass. And it’s really to connect us all together, because the one thing that I think about music itself is that it’s universal. It can bring us all together. We’re in it together, whether we want to be or not.”
The ONE series show featuring Robin Holmes-Lanier will begin at 7:30 p.m. Tickets for the performance are $20, and military and first-responder tickets are $18, with students getting in for $12. Tickets can be purchased by calling 912-212-2787 or at the box office.