By: Kat Harlton
For Témi (meaning “Mine is worthy of thanks,” in Yoruba), 2018 has been a year of personal and professional evolution. This Toronto based R&B soul artist believes “Music is the person I talk to about life. It doesn’t judge, it just listens.”
He attributes his music connection to his older brothers who introduced him to the sounds of Motown and the musical influences of Babyface at a young age. Témi instantly fell in love with music, entering talent shows and contests.
Formerly with Disturbing the Peace (Def Jam Records), and after touring with Ludacris throughout the United States, Témi has begun his solo career and is set to release his new single “Dynamite” (July 13 via all digital retailers / Arrival Music Group.)
“Dynamite” combines a smooth piano intro, coupled with a sexy back beat, catchy arrangements and Témi’s distinctive vocals.
We had the opportunity to catch up with Témi and talk inspiration, songwriting, and role models.
Kat: Could you talk about the inspiration behind your latest single Dynamite?
Témi: Dynamite was simply inspired by the drive of a few individuals to make an original record that was current, but still at the core is a soulful fun record. My producer a.n.g.e.l of Arrival Music Group /MDC Music, Jd Era, Dub J and myself decided that we wanted to create something that spoke about that one special person in an individual’s life that means the world to them. We most importantly wanted to stray away from the derogatory way that women are being portrayed in society and show the core of love, but in a fun way. The kind of love where nothing else matters but that person, the way they make you feel, and the way you feel about them.
Kat: What is your song writing process like?
Témi: Because I personally am someone who is a fan of intricate melodies in music, I tend to begin my songs with tunes that are ear pleasing to myself as well as what I feel the listener might enjoy. After I am satisfied with melodies for most of the record, I think about situations that myself or someone around me is currently going through, whether it’s love, heartbreak, or even a story to tell. I fit these feelings as words into the melodies. If it’s a song about someone I usually start my song with the first honest thing (no matter how off the wall), I would say to that person about that topic, if they were right in front of me; and the song will usually develops from there.
Kat: Could you speak a little on your musical idols or role models? Canadian and international?
Témi: Musically I’m a huge fan of Tank and a lot of the soul singers of the 90’s as well as a few others that don’t fit into that genre such as Seal, and Kanye West. I appreciate their musical honesty and their personal growth throughout their music. I respect Canadian artists like Drake and Justin Bieber that are brilliant business men/artists who have built not only successful careers but empires through their music.
Kat: Have you ever been given any advice in regard to your music career that you felt you really connected with or made an impact?
Témi: I feel like this industry will always have a lot to teach me along the way but I think what I’m learning now is to keep honest people around who share a similar mindset. I’m beginning to see from my peers and examples of artists I look up to, that extreme heights of success can sometimes be a lonely road.
Kat: Do you have any advice that you think would be useful to new artists?
Témi: I think it’s important to stay humble, work as hard as possible, and be sure to help a few people along the way. Good energy is transferrable, so as we sow onto others, the world will sow onto us.
Kat: What’s on your playlist right now?
Témi: Right now I’m listening to the new Kanye West Album “Ye” as well as Neyo’s “Good Man” Album