Why Tems’ win at the BET Awards 2022 is historic

Famous Nigerian singer Temilade Openiyi, popularly known as Tems, has made a historic win at the 2022 BET awards, held at the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles, where she clinched the Best International Act award.

Tems landed this historic feat which makes her the first Nigerian and African female musician to achieve this feat as she ousted UK singers Little Simz and Dave to win the BET Award for Best International Act.

While receiving the award, she said: ”It’s an honor. I mean, this is the first award show that I’m winning. I want to use this as an opportunity to speak to every single young, old, whatever, every single woman watching this, every single girl watching this at home where I’m from, things like this don’t happen.”

Tems quit her job in 2018 to pursue a career in music. The singer went on to learn music production on YouTube and produced her debut single “Mr Rebel” which she released on the 18th of July, 2018. This was quickly followed by another single “Try me” on the 7th of August, 2019. Her debut Extended Playlist (EP), “For Broken Ears” really took to the airwaves with ”Damages”, a single from that project peaking at number one on the Nigerian Apple Music chart.

In October 2020, Tems was featured on fellow Nigerian singer Wizkid’s single, “Essence”, from the latter’s fourth studio album, Made in Lagos. The song earned her a number one spot on BBC 1Xtra Airplay Chart and also earned her first career entry on Billboard Hot 100 at number 9. Tems has won a Soul Train Music Award, two NAACP Image Awards and has received a Grammy Award nomination for Best Global Music Performance. On the 8th of November 2020, Tems was included in The Future Awards Africa: Class of 2020.

Following her win at the 2022 BET awards, Tems joins Ice Prince, Wizkid, Davido, 2baba, and Burna Boy as Nigerians who have won BET Awards in the past.

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