Tiwa Savage

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Tiwa Savage
Tiwa Savage's studio portrait.jpg
A studio portrait of Tiwa Savage
Born Tiwatope Savage
(1980-02-05) 5 February 1980 (age 34)[1]
Ikeja, Lagos State, Nigeria
Alma mater University of Kent, Berklee College of Music
Occupation
  • Singer-songwriter
  • recording artist
  • performer
  • actress
Home town Isale Eko,[2][3] Lagos Island, Lagos State
Spouse(s) Tunji Balogun (m. 2013)
Musical career
Genres
Instruments
  • Vocals
Years active 2010–present
Labels
Associated acts
Website
officialtiwasavage.com

Tiwatope Savage-Balogun[4] (born 5 February 1980), known by her stage name Tiwa Savage, is a Nigerian singer-songwriter, recording artist, performer and actress. She is currently signed to Sony/ATV Music Publishing[5] and Mavin Records.[6] She co-wrote the track "Collard Greens & Cornbread" on Fantasia Barrino's Grammy-nominated album Back to Me.[7] Savage was featured on Solar Plexus, a compilation album that was released a day after the establishment of Mavin Records.[8] On 3 July 2013, she released her debut studio album Once Upon a Time. Savage sings in English and Yoruba.[9] As a singer, her achievements include one MTV Africa Music Award, one The Headies Award, one Channel O Music Video Award, one Nigeria Music Video Award, and two City People Entertainment Awards, among others.

Music career[edit]

Early life, career beginnings, and songwriting[edit]

Tiwa Savage was born in Lagos, Nigeria. Her family relocated to London from Nigeria when she was 11 years old. Whilst attending high school, she was a trombone player for her school's orchestra band. Savage had a healthy upbringing; she grew up in a multicultural setting due to her migration from Nigeria to the United Kingdom, and from the United Kingdom to the United States. After graduating with a degree in Business administration from the University of Kent, Savage started working at The Royal Bank of Scotland.[10] She did backup vocals for George Michael at the age of 16, and lent vocals to other musicians such as Mary J. Blige, Chaka Khan, Blu Cantrell, Emma Bunton, Kelly Clarkson, Andrea Bocelli, and Ms. Dynamite, among others.[6][9] Furthermore, she has performed on stage with Sting, 50 Cent, The Black Eyed Peas, Eminem, Robbie Williams and Destiny's Child, to name a few.[6]

Savage enrolled at Berklee College of Music and graduated with a degree in professional music at the age of 27. While reminiscing about her experiences there, she said she was motivated by the drive and passion of the younger students. She also said she needed the school's atmosphere. Savage spoke briefly on the challenges musicians face during their transition from backup to lead, and said that artists face more scrutiny when their performances are mediocre. Her business background has helped her fully understand the scope of the Nigerian music industry. Savage spoke about her business background and said that her level of professionalism does not make her susceptible to deception.[10]

In 2006, Savage participated in the UK edition of The X Factor and advanced to the final 24 while attending the aforementioned music school.[9] While participating in the popular music competition franchise, she had difficulty dealing with the limelight. "You have to always realize that people are watching. When I got the bad news that I wasn't getting through [to the final 12] it was a really painful time. But you still have to learn how to hold that until you get home. Because you don't want to just let everything out. People admire you and want to see that you're strong; they don't want to see you breaking down" said Tiwa.[10]

In 2009, Sony/ATV Music Publishing signed Savage to a music deal. The deal solidified her to write for Babyface, Kat Deluna, Fantasia Barrino, Monica and Mýa. She has received songwriting credits for her contribution to Monica's soul-tinged ballad "Catch Me". Moreover, her collaboration with Fantasia on the song "Collard Greens & Cornbread" earned the American recording artist a Grammy nomination in 2010. Savage wrote Jaicko's "Oh Yeah", featuring Snoop Dogg, and Kat Deluna's "Push Push", featuring Akon and David Guetta. In as much as she likes writing for other artists, she finds writing for herself more rewarding. Savage performed background vocals on Whitney Houston's album I Look to You (2009).[10]

In December 2011, she co-hosted the second season of Nigerian Idol alongside IllRymz. Moreover, she made her film debut with Joke Silva and Ireti Doyle in the stage adaptation of For Coloured Girls. Savage became the first African female artist to be associated with the Pepsi brand after signing an endorsement deal with them.[10]

Humanitarian work and endorsements[edit]

Savage has been involved in many youth empowerment and breast cancer screening projects across Nigeria.[9][11] Savage helped raise money for an organisation that build schools in her hometown. In July 2013, Savage signed an endorsement deal with MTN Nigeria allegedly worth N30 million.[12] She also signed endorsement deals with Pepsi,[13] Forte Oil,[14] and Maggi.[15]

Challenges faced in the Nigerian music industry[edit]

When Savage stepped onto Nigeria's musical landscape, she didn't know what to expect. Moreover, she received a lot of ridicule and hostility from people who believed she wouldn't make it. She said that numerous people tried to discourage her from settling in Nigeria. Moreover, people told her that she wouldn't be welcome as a female singer. Furthermore, they said that she wouldn't be able to share the same stage with the likes of Tuface and Wizkid. Savage didn't allow people's negative connotation of her discourage her from doing music. She released her debut single "Kele Kele Love". The song made its way to the top of several Nigerian music charts. Savage's sultry tones, pulsating dance moves, and electric stage presence immensely propelled her to the top of the Nigerian music industry.[11]

323 Entertainment/Mavin Records[edit]

Savage established her own label imprint, 323 Entertainment, with her manager and husband Tunji "Tee Billz" Balogun whom she got engaged to on 5 February 2013.[16] She joined Don Jazzy's Mavin Records in 2012 after the label she co-owns teamed up with the executive producer. She was one of the lead artists on Solar Plexus, the record label's first compilation album.[6][9]

Savage speaking to Vanguard about her debut studio album

This album is straight from my heart and it's something that I've worked so tirelessly for. A lot of people wondered why it took me so long a time to drop my own album. That's because we had to go through a lot of legal processes to clear some of the samples that we used, and that took us some months. Also, we wanted to work with notable producers outside the shores of the country like Oak who produces Rihanna. So, we had to work around his schedule and waited for them to have our time. But this album is something that I really took my time with because I didn't want it to be the usual Nigerian album that contains just party tracks from the beginning till the end.[11]

2010–2013: Once Upon A Time[edit]

Savage started recording her debut studio album in 2010. She networked with Berklee alumni Keith Harris, Derek Pate, Scott Coleman, Radar Ellis, and Darien Dorsey while attending the aforementioned music school. During her interview with Brenda Pike, she said that she collaborated with Chuck Harmony, Warren "Oak" Felder, and producer So Sick (Da Grin), among others. Moreover, she said that her debut album will include records in her native tongue.[10]

Savage was featured on Flavour N'abania's "Oyi Remix" in 2012. Prior to collaborating with Flavour, she recorded her own version of the song.[17] In celebration of Nigeria's 52nd independence, Savage performed her rendition of "Arise, O Compatriots" for Ndani Sessions.[18] In November 2012, Savage collaborated with Waje, Praiz, Timi Dakolo and Pamela Egoh on the Ovation Red Carol Theme Song "Higer".[19]

In May 2013, Savage held an album listening party at the Wheat Baker Hotel in Ikoyi. She revealed the entire tracklist of the album and announced Iceberg Slim, Sarkodie and General Pype as the featured artists.[20] On 3 July 2013, she released her long awaited debut album, Once Upon a Time, to the Nigerian public. The album was released on iTunes a day before the Nigerian release. Savage named the album Once Upon a Time in order to portray the positive stories about her life. She said she wanted to motivate other upcoming artists by telling them that, once upon a time, she was a little girl in Isale Eko who dreamt of being a star. The album includes political songs like "Middle Passage" which is about the struggles of African men in a foreign country.[11]

2014–present:Releases, MTV Africa Music Awards performance[edit]

Tiwa Savage performing at the MTV Africa Music Awards 2014

On 31 January 2014, Savage released "Love in Yellow", a promotional single meant to celebrate Valentine's Day 2014. The song, which has a retro R&B and Funk sound, was produced by Spellz.[21] Savage was featured on "Turn It Up", a song by one of Mavin Records' newest signees Reekado Banks. The song was released on 21 February 2014 and was produced by Don Jazzy.[22] On 1 May 2014, Mavin Records released "Dorobucci" featuring Savage, Don Jazzy, Dr SID, D'Prince, Reekado Banks, Korede Bello, and Di'Ja. The song, which was produced by Don Jazzy, is the record label's first collaborative release since the release of the Solar Plexus album in 2012.[23][24]

On 19 May 2014, Foston Musik premiered Patoranking's "Girlie 'O' Remix" featuring Savage. The song was produced by WizzyPro.[25] The music video for the song was shot and directed in London by Mr Moe Musa. It was uploaded onto Patroranking's Vevo account on 20 May 2014, at a total length of 4 minutes and 7 seconds.[26] On 7 June 2014, Savage performed at the 2014 MTV Africa Music Awards alongside Miguel, Flavour N'abania, Davido, Mafikizolo, Uhuru, Oskido and Professor.[27]

On 27 May 2014, 323 Entertainment and Mavin Records released the music video for "Wanted", a song from the Once Upon a Time album. It was directed by Moe Musa in London.[28] The release of the video prompted a huge public backlash across various social networking sites, including Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube.[29]

In June 2014, Savage collaborated with Mi Casa, Lola Rae, Sarkodie, Diamond Platnumz, and Davido on a song for DSTV's Africa Rising campaign, which was designed to inspire Africans to partake in community-based social investment projects. The music video for the song, released on 24 June 2014, was shot and directed by South African production house Callback Dream.[30] The aforementioned artists performed the song at the Africa Rising launch ceremony in Mauritius.[31]

Personal life[edit]

On 23 November 2013, Savage and Tunji "Tee Billz" Balogun held their traditional marriage at the Ark in Lekki. Nigerian businessmen and celebrities who attended the wedding include Femi Otedola, Aliko Dangote, Don Jazzy, Banky W., Rita Dominic, Davido, Lola Okoye (wife of Peter Okoye), Toolz, Eniola Badmus, Omawumi, Iyanya, King Sunny Ade, Agbani Darego, Dr SID, Toke Makinwa, and Karen Igho, among others.[32][33] On 26 April 2014, the couple held their white wedding at the Armani Hotel in Dubai.[34][35]

Discography[edit]

Studio albums[edit]

Compilation albums[edit]

Singles[edit]

Year Title Album
2010 "Kele Kele Love" Once Upon a Time
2011 "Love Me (3x)"
2012 "Ife Wa Gbona"
"Oma Ga" Solar Plexus
2013 "Without My Heart" (featuring Don Jazzy) Once Upon a Time
"Olorun Mi"
"Eminado" (featuring Don Jazzy)
2014 "Love in Yellow"[36] TBA
"Dorobucci" (with Don Jazzy, Dr SID, D'Prince, Reekado Banks, Korede Bello, and Di'Ja)

Television[edit]

Television
Year Title Role Notes Ref
2013 Shuga (Season 3) Shade Banjo Supporting cast [37][38]
Plays
Year Title Role Notes Ref
2011 For Colored Girls [A] N/A Supporting cast [39]

Awards and nominations[edit]

Year Event Prize Recipient Result Ref
2014 The Headies 2014 Hip Hop World Revelation of the Year Herself Pending [40]
Artiste of the Year Pending
Best Vocal Performance (Female) Tiwa Savage for "Wanted" Pending
Best R&B/Pop Album Once Upon a Time Pending
Best Collabo "Girlie O Remix"
(Patoranking featuring Tiwa Savage)
Pending
Best Reggae/Dancehall Single Pending
2014 Channel O Music Video Awards Most Gifted Female "Eminado"
(featuring Don Jazzy)
Won [41]
Most Gifted Video of the Year Nominated [42]
MOBO Awards Best African Act Herself Nominated [43]
2014 Nigeria Entertainment Awards Female Artist of the Year Herself Won [44]
Best Pop/R&B Artist of the Year Won
Best Album of the Year Once Upon a Time Nominated [45]
Hottest Single of the Year "Eminado"
(featuring Don Jazzy)
Nominated
Best Music Video of the Year (Artist & Director) "Eminado" (alongside Clarence Peters)
(featuring Don Jazzy)
Nominated
African Muzik Magazine Awards Best Female West Africa Herself Won [46]
City People Entertainment Awards Musician of The Year (Female) Won [47]
BET Awards 2014 Best International Act: Africa Nominated [48]
MTV Africa Music Awards 2014 Best Female Won [49]
World Music Awards World's Best Song "Eminado"
(featuring Don Jazzy)
Nominated [50]
World's Best Video Nominated
World's Best Female Artist Herself Nominated
World's Best Live Act Nominated
World's Best Entertainer of the Year Nominated
2013 Nigeria Music Video Awards (NMVA) Best Use of Costumes "Without My Heart"
(featuring Don Jazzy)
Nominated [51]
Nigeria Entertainment Awards Best Collabo Nominated [52]
Channel O Music Video Awards Most Gifted Female Video Nominated [53]
4Syte TV Music Video Awards Best African Act Video Nominated [54]
MOBO Awards Best African Act Herself Nominated [55]
City People Entertainment Awards Musician of the Year (Female) Nominated [56]
Best Collabo of the Year "Without My Heart"
(featuring Don Jazzy)
Nominated
2012 Nigeria Music Video Awards (NMVA) Best Use of Costumes "Ife Wa Gbona" Nominated [57]
Best Highlife Won [58]
Best Indigenous Concept Nominated [57]
Video of the Year Nominated
Nigeria Entertainment Awards Best New Act of the Year Herself Nominated [59]
Best Pop/R&B Artist of the Year Nominated
The Headies Best Vocal Performance (Female) "Love Me (3x)" Won [60]
Best R 'N’ B Single Nominated
Channel O Music Video Awards Most Gifted R&B Music Video of the Year "Oyi (Remix)"
(Flavour N'abania featuring Tiwa Savage)
Won [61]
2011 Nigeria Entertainment Awards Best New Act of the Year Herself Nominated [62]
Nigeria Music Video Awards (NMVA) Best Use of Choreography "Kele Kele Love" Nominated [63]
City People Entertainment Awards Female Musician of the Year Herself Won [64]
Afrotainment Museke Online Music Awards Best R&B Soul Song "Kele Kele Love" Won [65]
FAB Magazine Awards Most Stylish Female Artiste Herself Won [66]
Dynamix All Youth Awards Most Promising Act Won [67]
Channel O Music Video Awards Most Gifted Female Video "Kele Kele Love" Nominated [68]
Tush Youth Awards Female Musician of the Year Herself Nominated [69]
Song of the Year "Love Me (3x)" Nominated
The Headies Next Rated "Kele Kele Love" Nominated [70]
2010 Dynamix All Youth Awards Promising Artiste of the Year Herself Nominated [71]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ For Colored Girls shouldn't be confused with Tyler Perry's 2010 film of the same name. It is actually the Nigerian adaptation of the American stage play, For colored girls who have considered suicide / when the rainbow is enuf.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

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  2. ^ "Tiwa Savage Talks About Her Career, Nigerian Artistes And More.". Ariya Today. Retrieved November 25, 2014. 
  3. ^ "TIWA SAVAGE: GROWING UP IN ISALE EKO WAS FUN". Thisday. June 8, 2013. Retrieved November 25, 2014. 
  4. ^ "It's Official: Tiwa Savage Now Mrs Balogun". P.M. News. 23 November 2013. Retrieved 25 November 2013. 
  5. ^ "Tiwa Savage- Biography Home". Biographyhome. Retrieved 30 August 2013. 
  6. ^ a b c d "Tiwa Savage – Mavin Records". Mavin Records. Retrieved 30 August 2013. 
  7. ^ "Tiwa Savage Grammy Nomination". Notjustok.com. 12 February 2011. Retrieved 30 June 2012. 
  8. ^ "Don Jazzy forms Mavin Records, signs on Wande Coal, Tiwa Savage, D'Prince". Punch. 7 May 2012. Retrieved 21 May 2014. 
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  13. ^ "Nigeria: Tiwa Savage and Wizkid Unveiled As Pepsi Ambassadors". AllAfrica.com. 14 July 2012. Retrieved 11 December 2013. 
  14. ^ Alonge, Osagie (14 February 2014). "Tiwa Savage unveiled as brand ambassador for Oil and Gas company". Nigerian Entertainment Today. Retrieved 14 February 2014. 
  15. ^ Zandonda, Isaac (7 April 2014). "Tiwa Savage, Toke Makinwa, and Sisi Yemmie Sign Mega Endorsement Deal with Maggi". Newspoint Africa. Retrieved 7 April 2014. 
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  18. ^ "Tiwa Savage Sings The National Anthem on Naija Independence Day". GhanaFilla. 1 October 2012. Retrieved 12 June 2014. 
  19. ^ "OVATION RED CAROL". Hip Hop World Magazine. 23 December 2012. Retrieved 12 June 2014. 
  20. ^ "TIWA SAVAGE HOLDS ALBUM LISTENING PARTY; REVEALS TRACKLIST". HipHopWorldMagazine. 27 May 2013. Retrieved 12 June 2014. 
  21. ^ Opeoluwani, Akintayo (31 January 2014). "NEW MUSIC: Tiwa Savage Drops Love In Yellow For Valentine". Daily Times of Nigeria. Retrieved 21 May 2014. 
  22. ^ S, Deji (21 February 2014). "Another Mavin Activated! Don Jazzy presents Reekardo Banks Feat. Tiwa Savage – Turn It Up". Bellanaija. Retrieved 21 May 2014. 
  23. ^ Akan, Joey (12 May 2014). "'Dorobucci' Makes Us Dance Our Brains Out!". Pulse. Retrieved 21 May 2014. 
  24. ^ Opeoluwani, Akintayo (10 May 2014). "MUSIC REVIEW: 'Dorobucci' Could Have Been Better With D'Banj". Daily Times of Nigeria. Retrieved 21 May 2014. 
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  28. ^ "PHOTOS/VIDEO: Tiwa Savage’s Most Raunchy Video Finally Out". Osun Defender. 28 May 2014. Retrieved 28 May 2014. 
  29. ^ Owoseje, Toyin (28 May 2014). "Tiwa Savage Wanted Video: Singer's Super Sexy Promo Causes Backlash". International Business Times. Retrieved 28 May 2014. 
  30. ^ Kaggwa, Andrew (29 June 2014). "DStv launches new campaign to inspire Africa". The observer. Retrieved 23 July 2014. 
  31. ^ "Lindiwe rocks Africa Rising extravaganza". Zambia Daily Mail. 29 June 2014. Retrieved 23 July 2014. 
  32. ^ Omigie, Abiodun (28 November 2013). "PHOTO ALBUM: Tiwa Savage and Tunji Balogun’s traditional wedding". Nigerian Entertainment Today. Retrieved 9 February 2014. 
  33. ^ Opeoluwani Ogunjimi (20 November 2013). "Details of Tiwa Savage's wedding to Tunji Balogun emerge". Daily Times of Nigeria. Retrieved 9 February 2014. 
  34. ^ "EN: Tiwa Savage Ties Knot In Star Studded Dubai Wedding, Jeta Amata Debuts 3 Films". Channels TV. 29 April 2014. Retrieved 29 April 2014. 
  35. ^ Filani, Omotola (26 April 2014). "Tiwa Savage and Tee Billz tie the knots in star-studded Dubai wedding [PHOTOS]". Daily Post. Retrieved 26 April 2014. 
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  37. ^ "Tiwa Savage, Ice Prince, Iyanya, Chris Attoh, others premiere Shuga". The Daily Independent. Retrieved 13 February 2014. 
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  64. ^ "BN Bytes: M.I, JahBless, Tiwa Savage, Juliet Ibrahim, Mbong Amata, Samkelf & Halima Abubakar win at the 2011 City People Entertainment Awards". Bellanaija. Retrieved 31 August 2013. 
  65. ^ "Afrotainment Museke Online Africa Music Awards 2011 WINNERS". Retrieved 31 August 2013. 
  66. ^ "Kate Henshaw, Uti, Tiwa Savage & Others Win FAB Awards + Award Pics". Jaguda. Retrieved 31 August 2013. 
  67. ^ "360Events: Some Great Pictures from the Dynamix All Youth Awards (18.12.2011)". 36onobs. Retrieved 31 August 2013. 
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External links[edit]

Media offices
Preceded by
M.I and Omawumi (2012)
The Headies host (co hosted with Dr SID)
2013
Succeeded by