Robin Lewis, age thirty, grew up surrounded by music. Her parents, Pete Lewis and Clare Church, are jazz musicians who played with the Temptations, Gabriel Mervine of the Motet, the Four Tops, Joe Henderson and the Colorado Symphony.
Following their lead, Lewis began writing songs when she was only eight. She can remember being outside on a swing set in early spring as the snow began to melt and the grass was turning green. A cheesy song about springtime and flowers came to her; her dad helped her put it onto sheet music, and her first song was born.
She picked up the guitar at eleven and never stopped writing. Nineteen years of songwriting have helped her capture her emotions and life experiences on her latest single, released on November 13. "Deep Blue Water" is a lyrically revealing folk tune about healing, loneliness and growing through challenges.
A few years back, Lewis traveled to Asheville, North Carolina, and, drawn by the city's music scene, decided to stay. She wrote "Deep Blue Water" after having been there just a couple of months, when she was feeling lost and everything was going wrong. She had been diagnosed with Hashimoto's disease, an autoimmune disorder that damages the thyroid. "My car broke down, I didn’t know where I was, and it was the first time in my life where I felt like I didn’t have a support system," she says. "I felt like I threw myself to the wolves."
But hardships sometimes have a silver lining. Lewis says that as people have been forced to sit alone in their houses during quarantine, without distractions, they've had time to confront their own suffering, something that has helped her write songs.
"When you're going through difficult things in life, you can be angry, or welcome it as fire and fuel for your evolution," she says. "You can welcome it as a gift from life that you are given to grow and become a better version of yourself."
Missing Colorado and ready to return to the music scene here, Lewis moved back home to Fort Collins. This past year she played at the Boulder Theater, where she sang "Deep Blue Water" live.
Aside from the song, Lewis will also re-release her 2017 album, Earth & Sky, on December 11. She just signed with new management and PR in August, and says the re-release is part of this new chapter. This time there will be a publicity campaign along with the new project, as well as a small release show in January that she hopes will draw more listeners to the album.
Although the songs are old, her goal is to bring them to people's attention again.
Says Lewis, "I feel this music is good medicine for the times we are collectively experiencing."
"Deep Blue Water" is out on streaming platforms now