SPOTLIGHT: Tyla, the South African singer who defeated Davido, Ayra Starr to win 2024 Grammy Awards

 SPOTLIGHT: Tyla, the South African singer who defeated Davido, Ayra Starr to win 2024 Grammy Awards


Tyla, a 22-year-old South African singer, has wowed the music industry and the world with her sexy and infectious song “Water” to win 2024 Grammy Awards.

Since the release of the song in 2023, it has been a huge success, reaching No. 21 on the Billboard Hot 100. Tyla’s success extends beyond the charts, as her song has gone viral on social media, with fans creating their own videos and taking part in the Water Dance Challenge inspired by her impressive moves in the music video.

Tyla’s electrifying performances, as well as her catchy music, set her apart. She worked with her choreographer in South Africa to create a captivating dance routine for “Water,” and her live performances have been nothing short of breathtaking.

Tyla’s music is a reflection of her diverse musical influences, ranging from Afrobeats and amapiano to R&B and pop. While she looks up to Michael Jackson, Rihanna, and Aaliyah as her American inspirations, she is proud to infuse her own culture into her music. Being from South Africa is what gives her sound its unique and captivating quality.

The unexpected viral success of the song led to the creation of a music video, which Tyla found both exciting and nerve-wracking. However, the positive response from fans upon its release was a huge relief for her.

Tyla’s accomplishments have not gone unnoticed by the music industry. She recently made history at the 66th Grammy Awards by winning the inaugural Best African Music Performance category with her song “Water.” This victory is a testament to her talent and the rich diversity of African music.

With her signing to US label Epic Records and her impressive list of achievements in 2021, Tyla is quickly establishing herself as a prominent figure in the entertainment industry. She has already had the opportunity to tour with Chris Brown.

Tyla’s music is not only making waves on the Billboard charts but also resonating with listeners around the world. Her soulful melodies have captivated her predominantly female audience, and her songs continue to top the charts. 

Things to know about Tyla:

1. Her full name is Tyla Laura Seethal

2. She was born January 30, 2002 (22-year-old).

3. She was born in Johannesburg into a Coloured family of Zulu, Indian, Mauritian and Irish descent.

4. She matriculated from Edenglen High School in 2019 where she was the school’s head of culture.

5. While at school, she had begun posting original songs and covers to her Instagram account, as well as sending them out to a number of figures in the music industry.

6. She was subsequently discovered by her first manager, Garth von Glehn, who organised her first recording sessions.

7. Tyla was studying towards a degree in mining engineering before she decided to commit to her music career.

8. In late 2019 after finishing high school, Tyla released her debut single, “Getting Late” featuring production from Kooldrink, which achieved national success.

9. Tyla rose to international fame with the release of her 2023 single “Water”, which entered the top ten in sixteen countries including the United Kingdom and United States.

10. “Water” was released in July 2023 as the lead single from her upcoming self-titled debut studio album.

11. “Water” made Tyla the youngest-ever South African and the first South African soloist in 55 years to enter the US Billboard Hot 100, following Hugh Masekela’s “Grazing in the Grass” in 1968.

More to read from Grammy Awards:

12. Her self-titled debut album is scheduled for release on 22 March 2024.

13. Tyla is also nominated for a BRIT Award, a Soul Train Music Award, a MOBO Award, and two South African Music Awards.

14. Tyla’s first public performance occurred in 2023 during the Dolce & Gabbana after party at Milan Fashion Week, following the release of her single “Been Thinking”, which earned her her first chart placements of her career, on the Billboard Mainstream R&B/Hip-Hop Airplay and Rhythmic Airplay charts.

15. In May 2023, she released the single “Girl Next Door”, featuring Nigerian singer Ayra Starr.

16. After spawning a viral dance challenge on the social media platform TikTok, the “Water” became a top 10 hit in the United States, United Kingdom and Australia, among several other countries.

17. She has stated that her dream is to become the first global pop star from Africa.

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