Yolanda Adams— Gospel music legend, host of a syndicated radio show that bares her name, an astute businesswoman, healthcare advocate, fashion designer and one of God’s leading ladies. Just a few words that describe the ever-evolving or should we say the every “becoming” Adams.
Admittingly, those are a lot of hats for only one woman, but at 50 years young, Adams has no plans of slowing down now, especially with the recent release of her 11th studio album entitled “Becoming,” which is available at Walmart stores nationwide.
Savvy Lifestyle: “Becoming” is the 11th album that you have released over the span of your gospel music career. Does this title have a significant meaning to you?
Yolanda Adams: The title of “Becoming” actually came as a result of a four year retrospective look at what I had done in my life and what I wanted to say in response to me turning a half of century. I asked myself ‘what has kept me all of these years?’ My relationship with God is number one; and then there’s the love that I have for my daughter and the love and relationships that I have with my family and friends. They really are the foundation for all that I do, because I have some great friends and family. I have wonderful family and a brilliant daughter who keeps me laughing all the time. I wanted to put into writing and into music what has kept me. Those are the things that kept me.
Savvy: One of the lines in your new single “Be Still” says ‘your best is in my hands, your success is in my plan,’ with people really looking for something to believe in, to find hope in, do you think that this single has a timely message?
Yolanda Adams: It’s a timely song for right now and for life period, especially as a Christian. You know how it goes, there are things that we have to go through and that we have to learn in order to be better people and that what’s the title of the album is all about, because we are constantly becoming better or at least we should be. We should not be regressing into something that we were back then, but we should always move forward in the things that we know we should do. “Be Still” is that answer to the prayer. That is my perspective of God speaking to me. Because he’s always speaking and sometimes He speaks with silence.
Savvy:You’ve gone beyond just being a good singer and artist, you’ve become a businesswoman and this new project was produced on your record label N House Music Group, what does it mean to have your own record label?
Yolanda Adams: The record label is a labor of love. Once you’ve been in the business as long as I have, you understand how everything works and any good businessperson always tries and eliminates cost. That’s what I was trying to do, eliminate cost that really was just fluff. I wanted to bring forth a great project that would stand the test of time. Also, as we start building our roaster we can help people who may not be able to get on a major record label, but have major label support. I want to start investing in people who want to do the same thing I do, but the difference is that I want to work with teachable people.
Savvy: As an artist you would hope that each phase of your career gets better and better, but that is not always the case for every artist. You started in this industry at a very young age. How have you managed to stay relevant?
Yolanda Adams: I’m a reader and I’m a person who wants to know more about things. When the Internet and the electronic industry were coming along, I was learning as much as I possibly could about it. I was doing online interviews, because everyone doesn’t have ‘a put it in your hand print publication’ and when I started doing that people were like ‘man she’s on the cutting edge.’ This is where our society is moving to. Wouldn’t you want to be at the forefront of that? So I think relevancy starts with knowledge. You have to arm yourself with as much knowledge as possible. Find out about things; don’t be so scared of technology. It can only help you.
Savvy: You are easily one of the most fashionable women in the Gospel industry and you recently launched a clothing line?
Yolanda Adams: I’m very proud of that clothing line. We just launched it— the Yolanda Adams Collection. It’s comparable to St. John and Chanel. I love both of those labels and I use to think if I could just get them to start making clothes longer, longer inseams, longer arms, longer torsos we would be rocking. Then I thought about it, why am I trying to give them the business? Let us do it and that’s what we did. It’s available on yolandaadamslive.com
Savvy: Tell us more about this health and wellness tour you are doing.
Yolanda Adams: I Love the health and wellness tour! What it does is inspire people to not be afraid to go to the doctor. In the African American community we have such disproportional numbers of obesity, high blood pressure, stroke, and heart attacks. All of those things happen in the African American community and they don’t have to. Our suffering is based on one word and that’s fear. Fear of hearing what the doctor would say; fear of trying to move on with your life if you are diagnosed with something. Just a bunch of fear. For example, my mom passed away with colon cancer un-necessarily because she was afraid of the doctor. She had great health insurance, but the one thing that kept her from the doctor was fear. I’m trying to go around the country with my name, compassion and heart and tell people that they don’t have to live a life debilitated with any type of disease. Everything can be managed. Life can be managed, as well as your health.
Written by Shameka L. Reed