The biggest names in gospel music all gathered together at Abundant Life Cathedral to celebrate the longest running gospel radio morning show, The Yolanda Adams Morning Show, with a concert to commemorate the show and all of its contributions to gospel music through radio.
The morning show and its hosts, Yolanda Adams, Marcus D. Wiley and Anthony (AV) Valary put on a two-day event for their faithful listeners to enjoy. The 10-year anniversary event included a night filled with a heavy line-up of gospel greats and inspirational newcomers, including Houston natives, Kim Burrell and The Walls Group. Listeners also were invited to come back the following day to join the morning show hosts as they recorded their show live from the cathedral.
“I can express exactly what God wants me to say to the people as a result of this house,” Adams said as she pointed to the church. “This morning show was birthed out of prayer.”
Adams, the four-time Grammy award-winning artist, revealed that she needed more stability in her life. From touring around the world to recording albums, her on-the-go lifestyle was becoming too strenuous and not the type of routine she desired to continue while being a single mother.
It was less than 72 hours after she prayed for a stable job that would afford her to be home Monday through Friday with her daughter, when her attorney called with a deal that she could not pass up. He offered her the first F.M. gospel radio morning show right here in Houston.
During the inception of the show, Adams was given free reign to put together her show the way she saw fit. She expressed that the producer wanted a comedian to add excitement to the show. Adams recalled attending an event in Houston where she and others at her table were the only people laughing at the emcee of the evening, which happened to be Houston comedian and morning show host, Wiley. It was not too long before Adams invited him to join the morning show along with she and Valary, whom she met at a conference in Beaumont.
“God could not have given me a better team,” Adams said.
Over the years the morning show has opened the door for Grammy-nominated gospel recording artists like James Fortune who told guests at the event that Valary was the first person to ever play one of his songs on the radio. Fortune and his group, FIYA, treated the audience to a performance of his new song, Prayer Saved My Life.
After 10 years in the making, The Yolanda Adams Morning Show now broadcasts globally in 40 markets via the Internet and radio. The broadcast has not only been an inspiration to its listeners and other gospel artists, but also to the city’s newly inaugurated mayor, Sylvester Turner.
As Turner presented the morning show with a proclamation designating Feb. 11, 2016, The Yolanda Adams Morning Show Day, he expressed that through the years Adams continued to encourage him to stay focused and continue to persevere throughout his trials.
Turner said that he pushed three times for the Houston mayoral bid and if it were not for God on his side he would not have been able to win the bid this time around.
The love and compassion for Adams and her team beamed from the audience to the stage as legendary gospel singer Kim Burrell took the stage to also express her appreciation for the show. Burrell stated that she disliked radio before the show hit the airwaves. After she realized the platform that the show provided, Burrell began to love radio for its versatility for the gospel artists of her age group.
Younger artist like Vashawn Mitchell, Zacardi Cortez, JJ Hairston, Alexis Spight and Jonathon McReynolds also performed their latest hits for the audience, but it was not until Brian Courtney Wilson and Houstonian Kathy Taylor closed the show with power that the audience came alive.
Adams and her morning show bridged the gap between traditional and new age gospel music. The trailblazing show also opened the gateway for new gospel artists to become household names.
“Whenever you pray and you ask God for a specific thing you better be ready,” Adams said.