YaLonda Lolar-Johnson was born and reared in Saint Paul, Minnesota. Her love for music and her musical gift emerged from a long lineage of musical giftedness. YaLonda’s maternal great grandmother and great aunts along with her paternal grandmother sang in musical groups throughout her childhood. YaLonda sang her first solo in church at the age of eight and knew by the age of 12 she wanted a career in the music industry.
YaLonda attributes her start in the music industry to gospel music industry broadcasting professional, Kevin James at CJB Radio, Henry Harris, founder of the ECMA, Andre Harris at Synergy Radio, Let’s Talk About Gospel, and Coffee Talk Jazz Radio. She has recently released her single entitled “I Shall Wear a Crown” and is currently working on recording her debut album.
The first thing that struck me about this reworking of the Thomas Whitfield song, “I Shall Wear a Crown”, is that the word ‘awesome’ would not effectively describe this project. I’m glad that God has blessed us with this opportunity to hear what He has given YaLonda Lolar-Johnson. She has a powerfully unique voice that captures your attention from the very first note. It is apparent from the opening bars that YaLonda poured her heart and soul into this project.
This cover recording showcases her voice, and her ability to make a song uniquely hers. The musical arrangement and vocal interpretation is her cry out to the Lord that she’s doing all she can do, and is an R&B-tinged declaration that God is so much more than anything else can ever be. YaLonda Lolar-Johnson is a power house vocalist who is going to capture gospel, and just about any group of music fans, worldwide. “I Shall Wear a Crown”, finds YaLonda in her vocal “sweet spot”; right on the cusp of exploding forth with unbridled praise and passion while maintaining a composure that will hold audiences in awe.
YaLonda is not one of those average whittled singers whose diminutive vocals are often swallowed by the latest beat. Rather, in her beautiful soaring melisma, she sends us first class on a bullet train straight into God’s presence. I figure that today, with so much negativity in music, people need to make a concise and conscious decision concerning the music that they feed their lives with. And that doesn’t necessarily mean accepting sub-par, non-creative work.
On the contrary, YaLonda Lolar-Johnson delivers positive, extremely high quality music that is aso inspirational, spiritual, life-changing, and the truth. The reason why I use these words to describe this music is because I truly feel her spiritual heart. It is extremely rare to find any current artist that you believe makes the music they sing a part of their living. You can feel that YaLonda has an intimacy with God that transcends audiences and congregational interaction. This is the truth of her music and artistic being.