Religious audiences have been validating Yolanda for well over a decade. She was employed as an elementary teacher in Houston when she first began to garner recognition for her stunning performances. “I taught second and third grades. I would go on the road during the weekends to sing. Pretty soon the demand started growing. I realized I might be able to make it my career.” The eldest of six siblings, her pioneering spirit and boundless optimism soon became her trademark.
Her solid church background and love of all kinds of music, which she says: “was inspired by family- everything from Stevie Wonder to Beethoven,” left her with a respect for traditional musical hues, as well as a desire for more contemporary interpretation. “Too many times we’re put in a box by musical labels,” she says. It was while she served as a lead singer with the Southeast Inspirational Choir that Yolanda caught the eye of the prolific composer/producer Thomas Whitfield. He guided her first album, Just As I am for Sound of Gospel Records.
Yolanda went on to sing for the Tribute label in 1990, and was soon hailed as the most versatile contemporary gospel singer since Aretha Franklin. Her brilliant follow-up albums, 1991’s Through The Storm , and 1993’s Save The World won several Stellar awards, Gospel’s highest accolade. 1995’s More Than A Melody propelled her into the world of R and B Gospel, with hit singles such as “Gotta Have Love, ” and “Open Arms.” The disc won a Soul Train Lady Of Soul award, earned her a Grammy nomination, and unforgettable live performance spot on the 1996 Soul Train Music Awards telecast.
Her album, Yolanda…. Live In Washington, snagged her yet another Stellar award, and another Grammy nomination. Her “bring-the-crowd-to-their-feet” reputation has now become the stuff of pop legend. In fact, it was after seeing Yolanda live in New York ‘s Beacon Theater that Elektra’s Chairman Sylvia Rhone (co-executive producer of the new album) decided to sign the vocalist.
Yolanda Adams can now be heard on KROI – Praise 92.1 FM Radio, A Radio-One, Inc. Station, Monday through Friday from 5am – 10am. The Yolanda Adams with Bro. Larry Jones is syndicated in over ten (10) markets.