Allstate Sugar Bowl 2019 – National Anthem
With a voice that is as powerful with a whisper as it is with a bellow, contemporary New Orleans jazz singer Robin Barnes is here to stun audiences. Fans of the Allstate Sugar Bowl will have the opportunity to hear her perform tonight’s National Anthem.
Barnes grew up surrounded by jazz sounds, but it was a memorable experience with her church choir as a girl that made her realize that music would be her future.
“Growing up, all the children at my church were encouraged to join choir,” she said. “The first mass after my mom made me join (yes, she made me), I was given a solo in ‘Ave Maria.’ I closed my eyes and sung my heart out and when I opened them, I only looked at my mother. She was crying along with the rest of the congregation. That’s when I realized how moving music was, and that I wanted to sing for the rest of my life.”
As Robin grew older and mainstream music began to take hold, she began to marry the old and the new to create her own unique blend of funky jazz, soul and R&B. By captivating audiences with her renditions of popular songs and contemporary classics, she makes each song her own.
She will bring a gospel-style to tonight’s National Anthem, as well as adding in her other influences.
“Anything with music to me, I like to paint a story,” she said. “I hope I’m able to take people to another place and give them more of an experience. I’ve had the opportunity to sing the anthem since I was quite young and it’s definitely an honor to sing for our country and I also look forward to the chance to showcase myself as a New Orleans artist.
She has appeared on ESPN, BET, NCIS and more. She has also been featured in publications like Forbes, Southwest Magazine, Travel & Leisure, Marie Claire and Southern Living. In addition to being an award winning artist, she’s also one of the city of New Orleans’ biggest ambassadors, and she proudly carries the official distinction of the “Songbird of New Orleans.”
“Her husky, billowy cloud of a voice harkens memories of those big-natured golden jazz heroines, a little Ella, an early Billie Holiday, the snap and sass of a Bessie Smith, infinite possibilities to adulterate the system in a Lalah Hathaway — jazz and gospel, blues and soul, all in one powerful punch,” wrote Carol Banks Weber at AXS.com.
Barnes has also used her music to start a local fitness movement known as Move Ya Brass. It is described as a fun, funky fitness and lifestyle group from New Orleans that promotes creating a community of people from all walks of life. You come as a stranger, but you leave as family. The mission is to promote a happy, positive and healthy workout environment to help you become the best version of you.
“She’s the songbird of New Orleans,” wrote Emily Hingle in Where Y’at Magazine. “And she’s got a voice as smooth as velvet. Robin’s gorgeous, rich voice reminds me of Ella Fitzgerald: natural, deep and full of personality.”