A new contender has emerged and he is ready to take the R&B music scene by storm. Toronto-native Témi (pronounced Tay-Me) has the powerful vocals of singer-songwriter Frank Ocean, the smooth appeal of Ne-Yo, and the storytelling skills of R. Kelly, with a new age feel. The end result is a Top 40 Pop/R&B artist in the making.
Salute Magazine recently caught up with Témi, while he was back home in Toronto preparing for an upcoming show.
Growing up, Témi said he would listen to a lot of his brothers’ music. It was when he first heard them play Babyface‘s “Never Keeping Secrets” that he became inspired to sing.
Salute: Apart from Babyface, what artists have had the greatest influence on your music?
Témi: “Tyrese, R. Kelly, Boyz II Men. Some of the newer guys like Trey Songz. I dig what he’s doing. I listen to some other genres, rap music and Bryan Adams.”
Salute: What is it that sets you apart from some of the other R&B musicians out there such as Ne-Yo, Chris Brown, or Usher?
Témi: “I’m me… the fact that I give myself in my music. You can’t reinvent the wheel. I try not to water it down. I put real names and real people in my music. Nobody else can give me because nobody else is me.”
Témi first hit the scene in 2014, with the release of his debut EP Intro II A New Beginning, and looks to make an even bigger splash with his forthcoming music video, “Love It,” a soft yet catchy new song off his forthcoming Stellar Evolution EP.
Salute: How did you first meet the director of your new music video Jerome Kruin?
Témi: “I’ve known him for a while. I met him years back. I decided I wanted to come home [to shoot the video]. I said ‘if I’m going to shoot with anybody, I’m going to do it with someone who gets the real Toronto and can relate to home.'”
Salute: How long did it take to shoot?
Témi: “It was a three day shoot. We wanted to capture a lot of the images and a lot of the city. It just got finished yesterday and the concept is really dope. It is not really based around me. It’s about a girl who doesn’t know how bad she is but she’s bad anyways. It tells dudes to focus in on your females and make sure she feels special.”
Salute: What was your reaction when you first saw the video?
Témi: “Damn, I look good. Just kidding. My excitement came from the fact I couldn’t wait to share it with everybody. My creative vision has kind of come to light. It’s a blessing.”
Salute: When is your new album, Stellar Evolution, set to release?
Témi: It’s about to drop really soon. I stepped it up from my old EP. I am going for more of a Pop/R&B vibe. I’m excited about it. It’s a lot more uptempo. I get to spread my wings and touch on different topics, so I’m really excited.