Raised in a church-going family, Pamela Johnson started singing in church at a very young age. Her parents were singers and participated in the church choir so it was a natural progression for the family to participate in the youth choir as well. Pamela was very shy as a youth and resisted singing solos until she began attending her neighborhood church, First Baptist Church Denbigh. Her friends were good singers and she wanted to be like them and be with them. Pamela's first solo at church was “Thou My Everlasting Portion”, a gospel hymn. First Baptist Denbigh recorded a church project where Pamela was featured on, “I Know a Man from Galilee” when she was 15 years old.
Pamela's friends introduced her to the music of Phyllis Hyman, a jazzy contralto. Similar to Hyman, Pamela's contralto voice was velvety and low in pitch. This prompted her to purchase Hyman's “Somewhere in My Lifetime” album and she devoured every song and learned all of Hyman's vocal inflections. Today, Pamela's contralto voice has evolved into a 4.5 octave mezzo soprano with which she encorprates many of the vocal inflections she learned by studying the vocal gymnastics of Darryl Coley, Vanessa Bell Armstrong and of course, Phyllis Hyman.
As a teen, a church member approached Pamela's mother requesting permission to sponsor her in a local beauty pageant; Miss Black Teenage World of Newport News. While she did not win, this pageant began a string of beauty pageants and talent shows all of which serve as the foundation for her selection as the Vocalist of the Year at Denbigh High School as well as the developmental platform for the consumate performer she has now become .
Now a solo artist, Pamela is releasing her first project, "Destiny Resurrected" on September 14, 2010. Here, she is declaring that she has accepted her divine destiny as a Psalmist and is stepping into that destiny. "Destiny Resurrected' is saturated with songs declaring victory like, "Imma Champion" and songs of gratitude, like "Thank Ya!", and songs of over coming like, "A Way". In "Warrior Woman" she praises the warrior women who wrestle in the Kingdom on behalf of God's people and in "As I Am" she shares her own story of overcoming insecurity and feeling like she didn't belong. Pamela even went back and covered "He Rescued Me" which she recorded in 1992 with Rev. Ricky Carr and the Abundant Life Mass Chior. It was a local favorite then and is sure to be a favorite now. She went to her college friend and now grammy award winning producer, Tyrone Corbett and his writing partner, Bob Donzella of Bo-Ty Productions for assistance and they created a symphony piece entitled, "Lord I Come to You", a simply beautiful prayer of submission. "You" is a love song serving as a precursor to her upcoming love song CD sometime in 2011. "Destiny Resurrected" has it all! Pamela has reached into her soul and penned lyrics that became songs that will ignite your soul whether you need to have praise and worship through a traditional sound, jazz sound or even a funky, horn-filled, body rocking sound, it is presented in Destiny Resurrected.
Her first single, "Father Breathe" will be released in Tidewater Virginia on Monday, August 16, 2010 and then everywhere else on Tuesday. She has specifically chosen this route because Virginia is home and akins it to meeting that special person. When you meet that special person, the first thing one does is take them home to meet mama and the family. While her mother is no longer living, Pamela considers the people ofTidewater Virginia (especially the Denbigh section of North Newport News) like family and she wants them to meet her special gift first.
Recently, Pamela was asked to come home and participate in her home church's Chior Day celebration as their featured guest. She called on her jazz music mentor from college, Rev. Alvin Campbell, who created an ensemble of singers and muscians and came up for her first concert as Pamela Johnson, the gospel artist. That Friday night, the church was full of the people she has known all of her life who watched her grow into a young woman and saw her off to college with gifts and money. She stood for an hour and hugged eveybody who waited in the line to embrace her and share their rembrances of her as a child. The scripture talks about how a man (or woman) can be accepted all over the world; but, be rejected at home. Friday, July 30, 2010 found Pamela wrapped in the love of the people who have known her the longest and prompted her to write the song, "Heart Tears" - a love song of gratitude.
"Destiny Resurrected" is a befitting title depicting the return of God's anointed to her Godly assignment....her destiny. She promises that her destiny will never require resurrecting again. She is here to stay. Eyes have not seen, nor have ears even heard what God has in store for this mightily anointed warrior woman of God.