Tems has been at the forefront of Afrobeats movement in recent years. The Nigerian singer, songwriter and producer became a household name when she dropped her hit single “Try Me” in 2019. Following the success of “Try Me”, she released her debut EP “For Broken Ears”.
The EP spawned “Damages”, a song compounded by great sense of rhythm and soothing vocals flexing impressive escapism from her love life. However “Free Mind”, another song from her debut EP caught the attention of US audience years after the release of the EP. The song peaked at number 1 on Billboard Bubbling Under Hot 100 chart, with the EP lingering in the top 20 on US Apple Music Album chart.
Tems is musically rich and exotically gifted with a magical voice full of content that captures people’s heart and illuminates a great potential of a global mainstream artiste, the amount of talent and growth she exudes landed her a deal with RCA Records in partnership with Since 93.
The Essence Wave
In October 2020, Tems collaboration with Wizkid on “Essence” off his “Made In Lagos” album sparked conversations about her vocals and artistic delivery. Essence changed the trajectory of her career in the music world and catapulted her to the upper echelon of global superstars. The song became a subject of love and affection for every music lover around the world, which Africans in diaspora and other black community held sacredly, an actual definition of cultural reset and monumental moment in the history of Afrobeats music. Her effort on the song earned her numerous awards and significant career achievements.
Tems became the first female Nigerian artiste to debut on Billboard Hot 100, with Justin Bieber’s input on the remix, the song peaked at number 9 on the chart. However, she also made history by becoming the first female artiste in Nigeria to earn a double platinum certification in the US, a platinum certification in Canada, a gold certification in the UK, a NAACP Image Award, two Soul Train Awards and a Grammy nomination. She remains the best selling female Afrobeats artiste ever.
For an artiste with no competitive element, fixation with charts, accolades or attention, Tems’ talent and dedication to her craft yielded her imminent success story to superstardom.
In 2021 after wining and dinning with the Canadian rapper Drake, she featured on his song “Fountains” which earned her another entry on Billboard Hot 100. Though a lot of people wanted her sound tailored for African audience, Tems stayed through to her style of music we are all accustomed to and pushed the envelope with her sophomore EP “If Orange was a place”. The EP was met with warm reception from her new international audience, it graced Billboard World Album chart, Top 30 on US Apple Music Album and Top 10 on UK Apple Music Album chart.
While still enjoying the wave, “Found”, a legitimately perfect and extraordinarily enjoyable track off her sophomore EP, featuring the talented Brent Faiyaz debuted on Global Spotify chart and also peaked at number 1 on UK Afrobeats Chart.
Awards and Collaborations
Tems is a predominant force with an influence that goes beyond the internet. When people thought it’s impossible to top her achievements, the rebel gang leader magnificently exceeds people’s expectations of her. Her collaboration with American Rapper Future and Canadian Rapper Drake “Wait For U” produced her yet another grand entry on Billboard Hot 100. “Wait For U” is a sample of Tems record “Higher” off her debut EP, she set unprecedented record as the first African artiste to debut at number 1 on Billboard Hot 100 and second Nigerian artiste to peak at number 1 on the chart.
The utilization of Tems talent to its maximum potential steered her smooth transition phase from a rising star to a global superstar. She has been enjoying love, support and shower of praises from big international artists like Adele, Drake, Rihanna, and Future since her exposure to the global music scene. Future acknowledged her with two ecstatic posts on Twitter for allowing him to sample “Higher” on “Wait For U” and own the record. She was also spotted with Rihanna at Fenty Beauty Event in New York.
In 2022 she bagged 3 nominations at the BET Awards “Best New Artiste”, “Best Collaboration” and Best “International Act”, becoming the first African artiste to earn 3 nominations in a year and most nominated female Nigerian artiste in the award history. However, she also becomes the first Afrobeats artiste to win 2 BET Awards in one night, winning Best International Act and Best Collaboration through her effort on “Essence”, making it the first Afrobeats song to win in a major category at the BET Awards.
Global movement and Endorsements
Tems is a beautiful performer, she delivers electrifying and mind blowing performances that penetrate souls and engulfs every room with emotions. She has performed in a handful number of festivals and headlined numerous sold out shows in Africa, US, Canada and the United Kingdom.
Tems secured a deal with the International footwear brand Reebok as she appears In Reebok’s “Life Is Not A Spectator Sport” campaign. She also starred in Tommy Hilfiger Jeans spring 2022 campaign. In addition, She got an invite from Coca-Cola’s Coke Studio for “Conductor” campaign and “A kind of Magic” performance featuring Ari Lennox, Griff, Tesher, Mariah Angeliq and other talented artists around the globe.
Tems who is an ardent promoter of self love, a radiant soul spreading positivity in parallel with great energy launched her new biweekly radio show “Leading Vibe Radio” in April 2022 in conjunction with Apple Music 1. The Leading Vibe platform was created with the purpose of sharing Tems career journey and the dynamism in her creative process. It also serves as a source of motivation and inspiration for people trying to harness and showcase their talent to the world, do great things in life and find positivity in the worst of places or situations.
Tems has broken the jinx that seemed impossible for many African artistes and gotten her hands on achievements that eluded many females artistes for decades. Sitting pretty on the throne as the leader of the new generation of artistes, her top spot wasn’t earned by mere conferment, it was earned based on merit. However, her unique style of singing separates her wheat from the chaff. Tems is an embodiment of creativity, excellence, hard work and grace.
Inspite of people’s skepticism about her brand sustainability and consistency, she has proved unequivocally that her spotlight can never be overshadowed, she supersedes a prevailing trend and she will continue to flourish beyond measures. Tems has exhibited different layers of quintessential movements. She has broken many records, set new ones and showed remarkably that her wave isn’t momentary, she is here to make timeless music and walk her path to becoming one of the most iconic African artistes in the history book. Tems is currently one of the most sought-after female artistes in the US, with her debut album potentially dropping this year, we can only expect an impactful and groundbreaking body of work.