Teddy Pendergrass – “I Am Who I Am” | New Music

“It was long ago but it seems like only yesterday / When I thought my life was over and done / But now that time has passed and I see things so differently / It took a long time for me to understand / I am who I am / I’m more than just what you see / No one can discourage me / See I am just what I am / And it’s all a part of God’s plan / So here I stand still the same man / I am who I am”

Tomorrow (March 26th) would have marked the 61st birthday of soul superstar who inspired so many of the artists that we hold dear.
To commemorate the memory of the of the late great soul legend Teddy Pendergrass who passed away on January 13th 2010 aged 59, “I Am Who I Am” – a previously unreleased song that was among the last that Pendergrass recorded in his lifetime has just been released today.

Composed by Teddy Pendergrass with his longtime friend and M.D Bill Jolly, with additional arrangements by multi-platinum producer Herb Middleton and addition vocals from Jeff Smith’s Philadelphia Boys Choir and Chorale, this inspiring song is available to buy now on iTunes, Amazon.com, Rhapsody and most digital outlets.
With a percentage of proceeds going to the Teddy Pendergrass Alliance, which provides opportunities for individuals with spinal cord injuries.

Teddy’s widow, Joan Pendergrass had this to say about the new song, “Feeling incredibly whole and wanting to express to his fans the truth about his struggles and triumphs, he wrote these lyrics with no regrets for the world to hear…and he was proud about it. Forget his disability! When he recorded this song 25 years after the accident, he was standing tall in his spirit…still the same man… declaring ‘I Am Who I Am.’ This song should be an inspiration to all.”

Listen: Teddy Pendergrass – “I Am Who I Am”

Originally recorded in the summer of 2006, “I Am Who I Am” was never released to the public until now. He only performed it once at the “Teddy 25” anniversary event in Philadelphia that celebrated his milestone year of life post the car accident that rendered him paralyzed from the neck down.

The Estate of Theodore D. Pendergrass is proudly moving forward with its plans to produce the major motion picture “I Am Who I Am: The Teddy Pendergrass Story.” Young singer Tyrese Gibson (a.k.a. “Tyrese”) was personally tapped by Teddy to be in this picture because both men had a mutual admiration for each other. Teddy took Tyrese under his wing, and Tyrese respectfully referred to Teddy as “Pops.” The film is tentatively slated to begin shooting in Philadelphia and Toronto before year’s end.

Joan Pendergrass concludes, “Ted and I met on Easter Sunday and were spiritually connected ever since. He considered me a Godsend…his ‘Soul Mate.’ He was all-man to me. And with me, he felt like a complete man again. We truly found a ‘50/50 Love.’ We inspired each other…”

“Now I stand for Teddy Pendergrass – his legacy and his dreams. ‘I Am Who I Am’ is more than just another radio single. It’s about pride. While he was here, my Teddy endured – laughed, loved and lived life to the fullest. At times when I lose hope and feel like I cannot go on, I think of how my Teddy – my love, my rock – persevered. This song and the major motion picture we are about to create will reveal that same power that Teddy felt to the world.”