More often than not, several artists’ careers are defined and shaped through the lens of the first award-winning crossover hit song they release and the legion of the audience that meticulously followed the song’s meteoric rise. I am referring to that particular song with appealing popularity across all genders, age grade, and borderlines. The late legend Michael Jackson first had it with the song “Billie Jean” in 1983, Beyoncé had it with “Irreplaceable ” in 2006 while the Nigerian artiste Teni had that career-defining first song with the single titled “Uyo Meyo” released in December 2018. One year on since it was published and yet, it remains one of the best songs ever churned out by any Nigerian artistes in that space of time.
In talking about the reward for such excellence, if the year in review for any music award shows is within last year December and now, it will be hard for any musician to deny Teni’s ‘Uyo Meyo’ to winning categories such as ‘Song Of The Year”, ‘Artiste Of The Year” and Record Of The Year – the single is a classic evergreen song . By the time the visuals for the song debuted January of this year, Teni’s music career that was on an upward trajectory suddenly received an extra supersonic boost, shooting her relevance into A-list status. The normal cliché is that it often takes female artistes close to a decade to become household names in the Nigerian music industry. But Teni shattered that – She became a global brand in less than thirty-six months . From the time she released songs like ” Askamaya” in 2017, ” Fake Jersey “(2018), ” Case “(2018) to crowning that year with the monster hit ” Uyo Meyo ” which ushered in her 2019 classics like ” Sugar Mummy ” and her EP ’s self-titled viral single ” Billionaire “, it was undeniable that she was heading for superstardom.
But what is it that makes Teni standout despite not being the stereotypical music pop star icon that you may see walking the runway at the Milan fashion week? Although she substituted wearing expensive wigs to have do-rag on and also fancy sneakers instead of high heels, yet, she’s one of the most celebrated female African pop artistes across the globe – her nomination for ” Best African Act” at 2019 MTV Europe
Music Awards gives credence to that. Yet, what is it about Teni’s voice that’s refreshingly addictive? Is it her sound juxtaposition – a reflection of the entire great tunes that previously held sway in the industry with the kind of eargasmic reminiscent of iconic artiste Asa’s debut album and cadence suggestive of 2Baba’s “Grass 2 Grace” album ? To be sincere,
you can’t talk about the artiste Teni’s music without making some forms of references to legendary names in the music industry. As of now, the love for Teni even goes beyond her vocals – As a respected satirist commenting on several social issues, she entertains the millions of her followers on Instagram.
The last twelve months have been the most successful in Teni’s music career. Outside the other recognized female musicians like Tiwa Savage and Yemi Alade, she’s the only new female artiste that broke into the international music scene in 2019. Humble, calm and approachable, she’s the only Nigerian female entertainer with the most collaboration in the last twelve months . For most parts in 2019, she’s been touring Europe and other African countries performing at series of concerts and festivals. For Teni, she always gives credit to her army of fans in Nigeria. And for that, on the 16th of December 2019 , she will be the headline artiste for her concert titled Teni Live In Concert – The Billionaire Experience . A year ago Teni released the song “Uyo Meyo” professing she could become whatever she wants. Yes, she’s become a superstar. With the release of her debut EP “Billionaire”, she’s heading towards that direction to becoming one of the first artistes in Africa to achieve that feat (never say never). In conjunction with one of her concert sponsors, Teni promises to make one of the guests at her concert a millionaire by winning a million naira . Now that’s how to end the year on a high note.