Got her start singing at an early age at Temple Church of Christ, the church founded by her grandparents Bishop Austin and Sister Selena Layne in St. Louis, MO. With a passion for design and architecture Àngela enrolled at the historic Howard University in Washington, DC as an architecture student. It was while at Howard she began singing for money to help support her college education.
With her singing roots still deeply and firmly planted in the church she started singing with Richard Smallwood at Union Temple Baptist Church. She also began performing with friends in a group. They called themselves Hot Tea.
Performing with Hot Tea gave her exposure to the music industry and the group began traveling around the country and opening for major performers. During this time Àngela began doing background vocals for different music artist. By 1977 Àngela realized her passion was music and changed her major from Architecture to Music Education.
She recorded a demo and began shopping it to major labels. The demo landed her a job as a backup singer to Stevie Wonder and she soon became Stevie’s protégé, learning the ends and outs of the record industry including writing and arranging.
In 1979 while on a gig singing with Stevie Wonder Àngela met Rene’ Moore. Eager to land a record deal the two decided to team up as a duo and formed René & Àngela. The group released their first album in 1980 and the first real hit was “My First Love” which peaked at number twelve on the R&B chart. By 1985 they had a stream of hits including “Save Your Love”, “I’ll Be Good” and “Your Smile,” which peaked at number one.
Even with all the success they began to share, tensions mounted and in 1986 they parted ways.
In 1987 Angela re-emerged as a solo artist where she had a series of modest hits, however her biggest single hit and signature song remains “Angel.”
Àngela has sold over ten million albums and singles worldwide. She was formerly married to Ronald Isley, of the legendary Isley Brothers.