Prior to the release of the “Essence” remix, Wizkid on 12th August 2021, told fans to expect “something special”.
“Got something special for you guys tomorrow…,” he wrote on Twitter, while also sharing studio snapshots hinting at features from Buju, P.Prime, and Bella Schmurda on the deluxe album.
Hours later, Bieber shared a graphic featuring all three artists’ names on top of the song’s title. “Thank u for letting me jump on the song of the summer,” he wrote in the caption.
Bieber is fully in on the record; he sings a verse and a part of the chorus towards the end of the record.
The un-remixed version of Tems assisted “Essence” was released in October 2020 from Wizkid’s album Made in Lagos. It debuted on the US Billboard Hot 100 in July at No. 82 and is currently at No. 54.
The song was included in Spotify’s Song of the Summer playlist in June 2021, and in Barack Obama’s favorite songs of 2020 playlist.
Made in Lagos is the fourth studio (and second major label) album by Wizkid. It was released on 30 October 2020 by Starboy Entertainment and RCA Records. It features guest appearances from British artists Skepta and Ella Mai, American R&B singer H.E.R., Jamaican artists Projexx and Damian Marley, and Nigerian artists Burna Boy, Tay Iwar, Terri, and Tems, whom features on the international-charting song, ‘Essence’
Made in Lagos got a nomination for the Rest of Africa Award in 2020.
Wizkid is one of Nigeria’s biggest R&B crossover acts, having worked with Drake, Skepta, and Chris Brown, among others. He first found regional success in 2011 with the massively popular single “Holla at Your Boy,” which appeared on his debut album, Superstar.
Wizkid went global in 2016 after his collaboration with Drake, “One Dance,” soared to number one in 15 countries, resulting in a multi-album deal with RCA, which issued his Caribbean-influenced major-label debut, Sounds from the Other Side, in 2017.
He began his career in music when he was just 11 years old. His first record, Lil Prinz, was recorded in 2001 in collaboration with Glorious Five, a group consisting of him and his friends from church. In 2006, he started pursuing music full-time, at first collaborating with various Nigerian pop acts including OJB Jezreel, Naeto C, and Banky W. By 2011, he was ready to record his debut studio album as a solo artist; Superstar was released by Empire Mates Entertainment (EME for short) to great critical and public acclaim across Africa, propelling Wizkid to stardom in Nigeria
The record featured a multitude of guest appearances, including a spot from Femi Kuti. It also featured Wizkids global breakthrough track “Ojuelegba.” Not only did the single cement his status as one of Nigeria’s biggest pop acts, it was also picked up and remixed by Drake and Skepta, thrusting Wizkid into the international spotlight. In return, he appeared on Drake’s 2016 smash single “One Dance.”
In March 2017, Wizkid signed a major deal with RCA and Sony International, which released his third LP, Sounds from the Other Side. A handful of singles appeared in advance of the album, including “Sweet Love” and the Drake-assisted “Come Closer.”
Wizkid continues to enjoy a wide range of fan-base from both the Nigerian and on the international scene.
Story: Hilda Katu
CLICK NAIJA 2021