Nigerian Grammy-winning singer-songwriter, Temilade Openiyi, professionally known as Tems has earned a spot on TIME’s 2023 TIME100 Next list.
She is listed in the category “Phenoms” alongside other personalities such as American rapper, Ice Spice, and model/media personality, Hailey Bieber.
The curated list recognises 100 people whom TIME considers as rising leaders making waves in various sectors such as entertainment, politics, business, sports, science, activism, and health globally.
For each person on the list, a current leader is invited to “pay tribute” to the rising stars, and in Tems’ case, that leader was Mary J. Blige, an American singer-songwriter and actress.
“Tems is in a class all by herself because no other artist sounds like her. That voice is so unique and original, so much so that it reminds me of the first time I heard Nina Simone. They both sing with emotion and conviction, making you feel every word they sing,” Mary J. Blige wrote.
Mary J. Blige did not hold back in her tribute to the Nigerian artiste, as she stated that Tems’ personality would enable her to become successful and stay in the industry for a long time.
“I know she will make it far because she’s a talented writer, singer, and producer—my only hope for her is that she becomes one of the biggest artists of her time.”
“Talent is one thing, but how you treat people and treat yourself in this industry brings longevity, and I believe she will be around for a while because she’s a beautiful human being inside and out.”
The list of the Time100 Next nominees was published on the TIME website, Wednesday, September 13.
— TIME (@TIME) September 13, 2023
The Editor-in-Chief of TIME, Sam Jacobs also wrote “With efforts like Person of the Year and TIME100, we have used the power of our spotlight to draw attention to those who have achieved peak influence in their fields.
“But a great magazine and a great media company should not just reflect the present, it should push us forward, showing what is possible as well as what society’s future and future leaders will look like. That is our ambition for TIME100 Next, our annual franchise recognizing the rising leaders in health, climate, business, sports, the arts, and more.”
Other figures on the “Next” list include: Everybody Hates Chris actor, Tyler James Williams, among others.
Although the TIME100 Next list has no age limits, the youngest person on the 2023 list is Dylan Brandt, age 17.
He is known as the face of a 2021 lawsuit against Arkansas’s ban on gender-affirming medical care for transgender youth.
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