Most Viewed Stories

Robin Lane, her history, her music and her walk along the Dirt Road to Heaven

IndiePulse Music interviews pioneer female artist Robin Lane on her latest release “Dirt Road to Heaven”, a story of a life in song.

Robin Lane may just be that truly amazing shining star we need to follow, taking the long walk home on the Dirt Road to Heaven.

Once acclaimed by The Washington Post as “the most talented female artist to come out of New Wave Rock,” Robin Lane brings a fascinating, multi-genre history to her emergence as a contemporary force in Americana music with the release of Dirt Road to Heaven, her first album on Red on Red Records. Five songs from the compelling, critically hailed 12-track collection have been compiled into a sampler EP, available on the Boston based singer/songwriter’s Bandcamp page.

During the late 70s-early 80s Warner Bros-signed band Robin Lane and The Chartbusters – whose hit single “When Things Go Wrong” became the 11th music video played by MTV on its first broadcast day in 1981 – the Boston based singer/songwriter was previously part of the L.A. Laurel Canyon music community in the late 60’s, where she collaborated with members of Crazy Horse and sang with Neil Young on “Round and Round (It Won’t Be Long)” from his 1969 album Everybody Knows This is Nowhere.

She moved back East after her several-year marriage to future Police guitarist Andy Summers broke up. She toured solo in the mid to late 80s while also opening for legendary artists like Warren Zevon, John Hiatt, Taj Mahal, Tim Finn, Dave Mason, Steve Earle, T-Bone Burnett and Richard Thompson.

“Even after my band left Warner Bros., I never stopped writing. I’ve found that as you write, your songs change as you change,” says Robin, whose later discography includes the 2002 Chartbusters reunion Piece of Mind and solo albums Out of the Ashes, The Sweet Candy Collection, A Woman’s Voice and Instant Album, a pandemic era collection of unreleased jazz, country and rock tunes. “Back in the day, I felt like I had nothing to say other than what was in the songs. I had to catch up with myself. What you hear on Dirt Road to Heaven reflects who I am as an artist and human right now. I never did hold back but I’m really not holding back now. These songs come from being at a point where I’m not trying to please anyone. They’re just the tunes I happened to write at this time and they’re not folk songs or rockin’ out. I’m glad people are liking them.”  

Dirt Road to Heaven by Robin Lane is a wonderful 5 song EP that could easily be a collection of hits all on its own, every song touching you deeply in the soul and brings visions of memories, some joyful, some somber, but all marking the steps along life’s wonderful journey.

Starting with the title track Dirt Road To Heaven, Robin takes you by the hand with a loving touch to guide you through the valleys of darkness, the rocks in the shallow waters and the pits under the shallow grasses. It is a slow and guitar heavy piece with her iconic voice shining through, a compassionate voice breaking through the static and screams. Followed by Woman Like That, a song about a person that is both friend and foe. The song All I Ever Need is, in her own words is “Just a simple love song”, but tells of an all-encompassing love, the once in a lifetime that lasts a lifetime. The song Hurricane Watch sounds like such a sad song, yet could also be a song of redemption in the hands of chance. The album ends with Last Cute Minute, a track with an old-style country sound and tempo, harking back to the romance of wishful dreaming. Love desires from a woman’s point of view.

So delighted with this EP, I had the opportunity to talk with Robin Lane, wanting to get her perspective, talk about the music and her journey. It was a wonderful conversation with a very real person that feels blessed in her life and just want to share joy with everyone she meets. So, now onto the Interview…

Interview With Robin Lane

IPM: Robin, your work as a writer and vocalist has been instrumental in what is now, in many ways the foundation of modern music. Even today, groups with female leads are often categorized or forced into “niche” genres, yet you continue to stand out and pave your own way, to what would you contribute to this ability?  

RL: Insanity?  No, I don’t really know.  I’ve never been great with rules or how you’re supposed to do things at any given time.  Back in the day, had I done what people said I should do to be successful, I might have been, but I chafe under constrictions.  A natural rebel, I guess.   Didn’t realize that at the time. 

I had a child at a time when women rockers did not, unless they were making money for their managers and record companies.   That forced me into an existence as a single parent where I really had to struggle, especially to stay somewhat valid in the music business or at least in my own mind.  I missed out but I must have had an ability to keep going in spite of not really gaining that so-called prize in the golden circle of fame that some of my friends were able to get.  So, I was being molded, cosmically speaking, into whatever you are seeing or hearing right now in my music.  I think it’s the will to live a life less ordinary and a will to live with joy.  Music has always been my way to feel a connection with others and more importantly with my inner resources that were tested every day. 

I feel blessed to be alive and because of this being alive, how do I or how does anyone want to live their life?  I try to do what I want to do and hopefully I will continue to, but there are always mountains to climb and rivers to cross and dirt roads to travel upon.  Maybe that’s the key…the dirt road.  

IPM: As one of the first artists to be seen on MTV, which was at the vanguard of the 80’s music scene (and unfortunately no longer resembles its origins) I am excited to see what you may do with the New Medias that support artists with vision like yourself, can you allude to what you may do to stir the enthusiasm of your fans both existing and new?

RL: I think I’m going to need help with that, as far as marketing and all the things that need to happen for an artist to stay visible.  All I can do is keep writing songs, performing them, and having great musicians to help me out.  It would be great if there was someone who believed in me enough who could help do all of those things you are talking about to stir enthusiasm, get songs placed in movies, tv etc.  That would certainly get my name around at least.  Then perhaps it would generate a nice tour opening for artists that have a name.  I myself do not understand current social marketing, I’m not even sure of the terms.  I need help with this.   

IPM: You have performed and collaborated with many legendary artists, some still performing today and others that are etched in music history, I am sure you will bring much of your legacy forward in your new material, but, and I ask candidly, how will you “bring the heat” and break through much of the “static” that is in today’s new music?

RL: I do not know.  It takes a village.  People such as yourself who are interested and like my music, are helping this happen, I hope to break through the static.  I think Dirt Road to Heaven is good enough to do that but I am not skilled in marketing and so I do need help.  Hello…anyone?  Bueller?  It is amazing how much music there is out there now.  Anyone can do it.  That’s a good thing and also brings a saturation.  So how do you get on top of the ant heap?  Just keep going for the love of it.   I can’t let it get to me.  If I did, I might just stop and rake leaves and eat a lot of cake. 

IPM: What has inspired your latest work on your new EP “Dirt Road to Heaven”, it’s smokey and romantic vibe is inspiring and even though it sounds like a mix of folk rock and vibes of reflection in life’s experiences, it also has a little bit of other genres and some of your sounds from the 80’s new wave sound. Were these pieces you were holding on to or new inspirations?

RL: My life is a wash and so is my music…it comes from everywhere and nowhere.  It’s pulled out of the air I breathe and out of influences from as long as I’ve been alive, old and new.

IPM: Listening to your new EP, I love all the songs, but the 3 that I really am taken by are “All I Ever Need”, “A Woman Like That” and “Last Cute Minute”, can you tell me what inspired those songs?

RL: Oh cool…All I’ll Ever Need was written for a friend who got married.  Just a simple love song. Woman Like That is a true story of a woman who followed me everywhere.  I moved to Cali, she moved to Cali, I moved back to Boston again, she moved back to Boston again.  I would do things for her, like give her advice as she was always asking for it but then she would go crazy on me.  The reason I befriended her in the first place is that she was the only other person I knew at the time who had had a baby.  I’ve never told that story out loud, only to friends who know about this.  Yikes.  The song is true and there are many more verses but for the sake of brevity in a song (I’m not Bob Dylan) I left a few out.

Last Cute Minute.  I’m so glad you like that song.  It’s funny, isn’t it?  My friend and I were sitting on a big rock in the Deerfield River, at my favorite watering hole, looking at ourselves thinking we were pretty cute still…and of course, we said, “ya know what…this could be our last cute minute” and the song was born right there on a rock in a river. 

IPM: In closing, can you tell us what your plans are for performing, Touring and where our readers can learn more about your work and find your albums?

RL: I would love to be playing so many places but good places, or not good places, at least easy to get to until my big golden ship comes in and we can afford to stay in hotels if we go outside the New England / New York area.  I love to do House Concerts, a great joy, so if anyone wants me, they can get in touch through my Facebook page or my website or join me on Patreon,   

Anyone who likes my music and wants to help, become a patron, “cheap cheap cheap”.  check it out.  I love my fans; I love to connect with them in any way.  So if they want to join me on Patreon that would be lovely.  

IPM: If there are any points of interest I may have missed or information you would like to add, please do so, I am grateful to you for taking the time to work with me. If there is anything our publication may do to help, please let us know. 

RL: You are wonderful.  Thank you so much.  I know there are well known people my band could be opening for who play around.  I don’t know how to get on that circuit.  Things used to be much easier.  I’m a good opener and my band is great.   You can also check out how I help people who’ve experienced trauma, as most of us have.  Songbird Sings Inc is my non-profit.  Our workshops are helping to heal trauma using the creative process of songwriting.   I’d love to do these all over the world, at least all over this country.  Vital and important, especially these days. 

One additional closing note, in 2010, Robin founded Songbird Sings, a Shelburne Falls, MA based organization dedicated to helping people work through and recover from traumatic experiences by writing and recording their own songs. Through songwriting and creative collaboration, participants develop inner strength and resilience while building support systems among those with a shared history of trauma. Robin says, “Working with different populations of trauma survivors, I have come to a deeper understanding of what had happened to me along the way, thus giving me inspiration for new songs and good survival instincts.”

Robin Lane may just be that truly amazing shining star we need to follow, taking the long walk home on the Dirt Road to Heaven.

Online Links:






Photo Credits: David R. Young,



Donate to IndiePulse Music Magazine’s Academic and Music Education Scholarship Program HeartBeat4Kids

IndiePulse Music Magazine creates Scholarships to help Youth In Need of assistance to complete their educational goals and stay in school.

Go to to learn more, Donations can be made at – Any Amount will help!

Support Our Publication

About Joseph Timmons (9928 Articles)
I am the Father of 5 and a "Would Be Philosopher of Idiocy" - Author and Writer for several Blogs and Online Magazine. Review Journalist, Musician and Audio Buff. Follow Me and I'm Sure to Entertain.

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: