The rise of Tems in 2021 is real. The Nigerian-born singer has had a sensational year so far, being featured on “Fountains” off of Drake’s Certified Lover Boy and on fellow Nigerian Wizkid’s “Essence,” which also got a remix treatment later on that featured Justin Bieber, and then totally slayed her performance on Jimmy Kimmel Live! earlier this month. Go ahead and file those as surefire ways to raise your profile and then add in her own excellent EP, If Orange Was A Place, which dropped last month, and she’s cooking.
Today, the video for the opening track off of If Orange Was A Place is out and it shows Tems moving through the streets of her native Lagos like an absolute boss. She weaves around the lives of locals going through the ups and downs of life with the confidence of someone who’s rising above the mess, as she delivers the stoic hook over an African drum-studded beat: “Crazy things are happening / Crazy things are happening / If you need somebody craze / You fit chop somebody’s craze.”
Her delivery is silky smooth, but it’s Tems’ unique appeal across styles that flows naturally from her tongue. She told The Guardian in September that she grew up loving artists like Kate Nash, Lauryn Hill, Lil Kim, Paramore, Outkast, and Green Day, and it’s that eclectic palette that inspired her sublime singular output.
Watch the video for “Crazy Tings” above.
If Orange Was A Place is out now via Since ‘93/RCA Records.
Some artists covered here are Warner Music artists. Uproxx is an independent subsidiary of Warner Music Group.