Why I delayed my debut album because of Tems – Tyla


Tems and Tyla

By Taiwo Okanlawon

Grammy-winning singer and songwriter Tyla Laura Seethal, popularly known as Tyla, has recounted how she delayed submitting her debut album to her record label because of Nigerian superstar, Tems.

The South African singer and songwriter released her self-titled debut album on Friday, March 22, 2024,  with guest appearances from notable global music stars.

The 14-track LP featured guest appearances from Grammy-winning Nigerian R&B sensation Tems, American hip hop star Gunna, and Jamaican fast-rising sensation Skillbeng. Grammy-nominated multi-platinum rapper Travis Scott will also appear on the album after he featured on the remix of her hit single ‘Water’ which peaked at NO. 7 on the Billboard Hot 100.

Speaking about her collaboration with Tems on  MTV Live, Tyla said she was about to submit the album to her record label when Tems sent her vocals and she told them to hold on.

Tyla also described Tems as the “Queen” of African music, adding that she has been working on her debut album for almost three years.

“I was about to submit the album then Tems sent her verse over and I was like wait, Tems just sent a song, I mean she’s the Queen,” Tyla said.

Tyla’s debut album is coming after she enjoyed massive mainstream success in 2023 with her viral hit single ‘Water’. The single earned her a Grammy award for Best African Song Performance at the 66th Grammys.

The 2023 hit, Water was top of the charts across 16 countries including the United Kingdom and the United States.

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To win the Grammy, Tyla’s Water beats Amapiano by Asake and Olamide, City Boy by Burna Boy and Unavailable.

Her single, “Water” is not just a global hit but also a song that can hold its own anywhere, anytime.

Aside from the fact that it has taken over the streets globally, three days after the visual debuted on YouTube on 7 October 2023 it surpassed more than three million views. Less than a year after the video was released it has garnered more than 130 million views.

And after spawning a frenzy on social media and a viral dance challenge on TikTok, it also entered the top ten in sixteen countries including the United Kingdom,

Yet, the singer, songwriter and dancer is much in demand everywhere, the song is on everyone’s lips and she is the beautiful bride every artiste wants to identify with.

After inking a deal with Epic record label, she joined Chris Brown as the opening act for his Under the Influence Tour. She performed the song live on The Bianca Show in Sweden and The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon in the United States.

Tyla who is mixed race – since she is of Zulu, Asian, Mauritian and Irish descent – was born a singer. She knew right from the outset that she wanted to be not just a musician but a global star. And she was determined to achieve it.

Music Performance is one of three brand new categories debuting at the 2024 Grammy Awards, along with Best Alternative Jazz Album and Best Pop Dance Recording. Kylie Minogue won the latter award.

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