Leading Vibe Radio
Lifted from a line in her breakthrough 2018 single “Mr Rebel,” being ‘the leading vibe’ has become Tems’ driving philosophy. “I don't know why or how that phrase came into my song,” the Nigerian singer-songwriter and producer tells Apple Music. “Afterwards I realized that it came for a reason, and Leading Vibe is really what it says: It’s helping people to become leaders, helping people to find their own voice, their own sound, their own thing—and to get the best of life.” Tems (Temilade Openiyi) aims to extend that mission with Leading Vibe Radio on Apple Music 1. “Leading Vibe Radio is really aimed at talking about real things,” she explains. “Shining a light on women, artists, and creatives that are finding their way, finding their voice, and talking about how to be good soil—something that greatness can grow out of.” Staying true to her unique fusion of R&B, soul, and African nuances helped Tems develop an authentic, original voice as an artist and a producer. After “Mr Rebel,” she succeeded a string of critically acclaimed singles with two EPs (2020’s For Broken Ears and 2021’s If Orange Was a Place), a feature on Wizkid’s record-breaking global megahit “Essence,” and an appearance on Drake’s 2021 album Certified Lover Boy. “Finding a sound and finding your own thing is really just the beginning to evolution,” she says. “If everyone found their thing, life would be so much easier in general—especially coming from Africa, where it's really hard to find your thing. Because when you're in survival mode, you're not thinking about yourself or finding the ‘inner you’ or doing anything. You really just want to make money and be great and you want to come out of the struggle. I want that for everyone.” For Tems, it’s especially crucial to build a community of empowered women in Africa. “I think, for a long time, not just in music but also in life, women haven't really had a community, a real type of understanding,” she says. “It's because most of the time women are pitted against each other. There always has to be one ‘top person.’ But imagine if we were all ‘top’—then the standard of living would be better. I see it's happening already, because we're all realizing that we need each other. Nobody can do it alone.” Featuring music from and conversations with some of Africa’s most dynamic artists, Leading Vibe Radio sees Tems flanked by her two co-hosts—Muyiwa Awoniyi, artist manager, community leader, and host of The Donawon Podcast; and Adetunji “Tunji” Paul, a multidisciplinary creative, strategist, director of studio BLVCK, and host of the Bantu: The African Creative podcast. “Muyiwa is my manager, and he was my friend first,” Tems explains. “He has a lot of wisdom, and that's the point of this radio station: to help people increase their energy, to edify what's already in them. Tunji is my older brother, and he's the person that I used to make music with when we were much younger. He is really into highlighting Africa, and creatives. He's a digital artist; he’s a software engineer, and he's someone that loves the intricacies of music.” “Africa is the source, so pay attention,” Tems urges. “There are many ‘leading vibes,’ and it’s about all of us collectively coming together to lead the vibe—that’s Africa to the world.” Tune in to a new episode of Leading Vibe Radio with Tems every other Saturday at 7 am LA and 3 pm Lagos/London on Apple Music 1.