In a recent unfiltered discussion with acclaimed American rapper Kendrick Lamar, the exceptionally talented singer and Grammy award-winner, Tems, bared her soul about her bold departure from the Afrobeats genre and her embrace of R&B music.
Tems, a prominent female artist, opened up about her audacious decision to diverge from the well-trodden path of Afrobeats and embrace the realm of R&B during her candid conversation with Kendrick Lamar. She unveiled her willingness to confront serious consequences, even at the risk of altering her career trajectory, all for the sake of pursuing her passion for R&B music. The songstress underlined that her journey into R&B was driven by a profound desire to communicate through her music, reaching beyond the confines of commercial success and accolades. This insightful exchange was featured in the latest edition of Interview Magazine.
In the discussion, Tems articulated her yearning for a musical experience that would not only elicit intense emotions but also forge a spiritual connection with her audience, reminiscent of iconic artists such as Celine Dion.
Sharing her perspective on her creative evolution, Tems expressed her sentiment towards the vibrant Afrobeats genre, which she deeply respects and admires, but recognized it didn’t quite offer the emotional depth and stimulation she sought for her artistic expression.
In her own words: “I was prepared to die. I believed in myself so much that I didn’t really care if I never became anything or anyone. I just wanted to get a message out. I wanted to get my frequency out. And I was like, ‘Even if ten people hear this, it’s fine.’ But also along the way, I used to listen to a lot of Nigerian music and I wasn’t getting a lot of spiritual—I love Celine Dion, so, I love that intense feeling of, I’m about to jump off a cliff. That’s how I want my music to feel all the time, and Afrobeats wasn’t necessarily giving me that type of stimulation.”
Tems also recounted the advice she received from individuals within the music industry who expressed that the Afrobeats genre was the only feasible path for her. She quoted their words, saying: “The only way you can do this is Afrobeats. It’s not that your music is bad, it’s just that it doesn’t fit in Nigeria. Nigerians don’t like this.”
The candid and introspective conversation between Tems and Kendrick Lamar offers a unique glimpse into the artist’s creative journey and her courageous decision to pursue her artistic vision. As Tems continues to forge her path in the world of music, her exploration of R&B showcases her determination to authentically express her emotions and message through her music.
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