Tems (Nigerian Singer-songwriter)
Tems who’s real name is Temilade Openiyi was born on the 23rd of July, 1996 in Lagos State, Nigeria. Having grown up with a single mother, she lived a really simple and straight forward life. She discovered her music talent at a very early age after joining her church’s choir. She had her early primary education in Lagos, before proceeding to Dowen College in Lekki. After obtaining her SSCE, she gained admission to study Economics in South African university.
Who is Tems?
Temilade Openiyi (born June 11, 1995) is a Nigerian leading female artiste that sits at the intersection of Afrobeats, R&B and Alté genres of music.
The music star who goes by the stage name, Tems, became a sensation in the industry after the release of her debut single, Mr Rebel, whose production was handled by herself.
However, she gained more recognition in the Nigerian music space after she dropped a follow-up single, Try Me. Releasing her debut EP, For Broken Ears, in 2020, Tems became a favourite of millions of Afrobeats fans in the country.
The singer has earned two Billboard Hot 100 entries. The first came from her collaboration with superstar, Wizkid on the single, Essence. While the latter resulted from being featured on Fountains, one of the singles off Drake‘s album, Certified Lover Boy.
Tems Early Life
Tems was born on the 11th Of June 1995 to the Yoruba family of Mr and Mrs Openiyi. Her father is British-Nigerian, and from whom she earns her British citizenship. While her mother is a Nigerian who hails from the South West region.
Tems was named Temilade Openiyi by her parents and was birthed in the city of Lagos. She is the second child of the family and has an older brother. Shortly after her birth, the Openiyis moved to the United Kingdom, but their stay in the country was cut short when her parents divorced. Thus, she and her brother moved back with their mum to Nigeria. While her father remained in the UK.
On their return, the family first resided in Ilupeju before moving to Victoria Island and also lived in Lekki and Ajah, respectively. Thus, she has a relatively comfortable upbringing.
Tems was raised in a Christian family. As a child, she came in contact with lots of gospel songs, thanks to her mother. However, when she became older, she sought to discover other music genres. And this led her to songs by superstars such as Aaliyah, Lil Wayne, Beyoncé and Destiny Child.
Whilst in high school, her music teacher, discovered that she was gifted musically. And as a teenager, she learnt how to play the piano and guitar.
Christened Temilade Openiyi but smartly crafted herself a popular name Tems is a 27 years old Nigerian singer, songwriter, and record producer.
Tems was born on 11 June 1995 in Lagos State, Nigeria where she grew up. She’s signed under Reset Industries, Human Music.
Tems had a brief stint in an elementary school in the UK. On moving back to Nigeria, she attended an expensive primary school for her elementary education.
She studied at Dowen College, Lekki, for her high school and passed out of the institution with good grades.
For her university education, she studied at a university in South Africa.
Tems who was born and raised in Lagos attended Dowen College situated in the Lekki area of Lagos.
She had her degree in Economics from a University in Johannesburg, South Africa.
Tems Music Career
By the time Tems turned fifteen, she had already decided that she wanted to pursue music professionally. To make this dream a reality, she took the first step to stop listening to other artists.
She did this to discover her own style. Thus, she began to create music in her own way, and this led to the birth of a style that is a fusion of Alté, Afrobeats and R&B.
While in the university, she had picked up sound production and began to master the skill. The goal behind learning the skill was to produce beats for her own songs.
In 2018, Tems launched her music career officially with the debut song, Rebel, whose beats had been produced by her. Rebel helped introduce her to the Nigerian music scene, and many people noticed that she was a talented Alté artiste.
However, it was her follow up single, Try Me, that did the magic and won her thousands of fans right away. The song was a huge success on radio, receiving constant airplay on radio stations across the country. Her success on radio led to increased streams on digital music platforms. Try Me was released in August 2019.
Already recognized as a unique voice in the industry, Tems received a collaboration invite from American singer Khalid. She honoured the invitation, and it led to the creation of the remix of the single, Know Your Worth. The remix also featured fellow Nigerian singer, Davido.
Yielding to the wishes of her fans, Tems completed work on her debut project and released it on the 25th Of September 2020. The EP titled For Broken Ears, which was produced by Tems, was a commercial success in Nigeria, North America, and Europe. The project’s lead single, Damages, was fans’ favourite and surpassed her success with Try Me.
That same year, she collaborated with Wizkid on Essence‘s song, which is the most successful single off his Made In Lagos Album. Thanks to Essence, Tems has become a global music star.
Due to her role in creating the hit single, she earned a number one spot on BBC 1Xtra Airplay Chart, a Billboard Hot 100, a Soul Train Music Award, two NAACP Image Awards, and a Grammy Award nomination for Best Global Music Performance.
Her success with Essence paved the way for a collaboration with Canadian-American singer and rapper Drake. She was featured on Fountain, one of Drake‘s Certified Lover Boy album tracks. Fountain helped Tems to earn her second Billboard Hot 100.
Almost a year after the release of her debut project, Tems dropped her sophomore EP titled If Orange Was A Place. The album, which contains the commercially successful single, Crazy Tings, was produced by Guilty Beatz and released under RCA Records. She had bagged a recording deal with the publishing company earlier that year.
Tems who happens to have kick-started her musical adventure while she was just 9 years old in a school choir, gave the music a full shot at the age of 13.
She became a record producer while she was in her 20s marking herself as a household name to reckon on.
Tems single “Mr. Rebel” became a massive hit ranking her among the top Nigerian fast-rising acts to watch out for.
Another single Tems dropped that skyrocketed her way into the limelight was “Try Me,” the single track was well-received worldwide.
The single Mr. Rebel by Tems spanked a comparison between her and Burna Boy by music lovers. It also got her some awards nominations like; Best Vocal Performance (Female) and Best Alternative Song at The Headies 2019.
Tems Awards and Nominations
The singer Tems won the Most Alternative Song category for Damages at Net Honour Awards in 2021.
At the 2021 African American Entertainment Awards, she won the Best Female Artist category and also went home with Best Collaboration, Best Video, and Song Of The Year for her work with Essence.
Tems Personal Life
Tems is regarded as one of Nigeria’s top five female superstars and is ranked among other female leading artists like Tiwa Savage, Yemi Alade, and Simi.
The singer was five years old when her parents divorced. And she maintains a close relationship with her mother and brother. When she’s not in the studio making music or performing at gigs, she likes to spend time alone in her apartment or pay a visit to her mother’s place.
Tems initially worked in the corporate sector before quitting to pursue music full-time. The singer cites music acts like Lauryn Hill, Burna Boy, Asa, and Adele to be her source of inspiration in the industry and motivated her to do more as an artist.
In December 2020, Tems and fellow Nigerian singer Omah Lay were arrested by the Ugandan Authorities for performing live in the country at a show, which flouted the Covid-19 prevention regulations imposed by the government. The duo was remanded in police detention for two days before being released.
Although rumoured to be in a relationship with Wizkid, the singer Tems is single. And details of her previous relationships are not known to the public as she has chosen to keep them private.
Tems Net Worth
Tems baby, as she is fondly called by fans, is one of the most successful artists in the industry currently.
Thus, the singer and songwriter earn a lot of money from her music career via brand partnerships, gig performance, and discographies royalties.
Tems is estimated to be bragging with a net worth of US$1 million-US$3 million.
- Free Mind
- Try Me
- Essence (featured by Wizkid)
- Illumination (Album)
- The Key
- Fountains (featured by Drake)
- Crazy Tings
- If Orange Was A Place
- For The Broken Ears
- Mr Rebel