A contestant on the hit television show The Voice, Angie Johnson sang the National Anthem at STAPLES Center prior to a Kings game this season.
In this latest installment of CENTER ICE, a new LAKings.com series that takes a look at what happens on the ice before the puck drops, Johnson – who used to be in the Air Force and one of her YouTube videos has more than three million views -- answered the following questions:
Q- How did you like singing the national anthem before a big game and in front of a big hockey crowd?
A- I always love singing the anthem, but even more so for sports events because the competition makes it that much more intense. You can really feel the energy, but for hockey it’s a lot more intimate. It’s still a big arena, a big stadium, but it’s closed in and there are lights and it’s really exciting. It’s not exactly the same as singing for a football game or something.
Q- What kind of sporting events have you sung the national anthem for?
A- I’ve done football games, I’ve done college level baseball, I was asked to sing during the seventh inning stretch for Game One of the World Series for the St. Louis Cardinals, my home team, last year but I couldn’t because I was involved with The Voice at that time. They couldn’t fly me back and I was like, “But it’s my home town, my home team!”
Q- Was this your first time at STAPLES Center?
A- Yes, first time. I can see why there is so much hype surrounding it. So many amazing, amazing talented musicians have played here and the sporting events, it’s definitely one of those things that I can cross off my bucket list.
Q- Your rise in popularity has been incredible. What has been the greatest part of your journey to this point?
A- The story behind it. Being a troop who was singing in the Middle East having another troop take a video of it, put it on YouTube, having Carson Daly get a hold of it and the rest of the world get a hold of it, then getting an invitation to The Voice. It’s magical! People have attached themselves to that story and the hope behind it and the possibility. People are like, “Wow, if that can happen to her, then that could totally happen to me.” There’s a lot of hope there so that’s my favorite thing. The second thing is probably getting to meet Carson and then getting to meet the coaches (on The Voice) and get critiqued by four of the major forces in music right now. Christina Aguilera, when she spoke to me the first time when I was standing on stage during my blind audition, I was just like, “I can’t believe you are talking to me right now!”
Q- What were your experiences on The Voice like and how did they impact your vocal career?
A- Just being in television in general learning about that side of entertainment because I’ve been in Nashville for six years and I kind of get the music industry, but this was the television industry, very different animals. So I really appreciated learning everything I could about TV; how it’s done, how many people work behind the scenes I had no idea. The staff on The Voice is anywhere from 400 to 600 people. Who knew? I didn’t know! You don’t see them on TV. That was priceless. It’s helped me grow in my confidence as far as learning how to be comfortable as me and who I am in front of cameras. That took awhile but there is so much filming that goes on for The Voice and so many interviews, eventually you just get over it. Cameras are around all the time. Before I felt like I always had to be straight laced and say my pleases and my thank yous and be very proper because the camera was on but I learned how to just be me.
Q- What some viewers don't realize is that the footage on The Voice was filmed months prior to the television release. What were you able to do during that time period to continue developing your career?
A- The key has been social media, really. Engaging and interacting with people on Twitter and on Facebook. I try to do live Tweeting on Monday, if I’m not traveling. My fans know that. They get on Twitter and if I’m not there on a Monday, they’re like, “We missed you live tweeting.” I’ll Tweet the whole two-hour show and answer questions for people. That’s really important. I didn’t really have a lot of fans before the YouTube video and before The Voice, so I focus on that a lot now and gig requests. I’ve gotten so many gig requests I can barely handle it. It’s all over the country, just flying around singing anthems, singing for benefits and things like that. It’s totally changed my life. That’s not what I was doing before. Before I was in school, I was a fulltime college student before being deployed and then after I deployed over the summer, I came back with every intention to go back to school for the fall semester, but then all this happened. It’s a big change but it’s what I’ve always dreamed of.
Learn more about Angie by visiting these websites: www.OfficialAngieJohnson.com; Facebook.com/OfficialAngieJohnson; Twitter.com/AngieKJohnson; and YouTube.com/OfficialAngieJohnson.
To read the previous installment of CENTER ICE, featuring Moi Navarro, click here:
Also click here to read an interview featuring Pia Toscano, who sang the National Anthem for the Kings during home playoff games: http://kings.nhl.com/club/news.htm?id=631659.