INTERNATIONAL music star, Tiwa Savage, has premiered her new single, ’49-99′ to hundreds of fans under the bridge at Obalende, in Eti-Osa, Local Government, Lagos.
The free show which took place on Tuesday afternoon saw the singer come out of a Lagos BRT Bus parked behind the stage singing to the blast of her single, ‘All Over.’ The fans suspended their day’s activity to watch Tiwa perform several of her songs including her collabo song with Reekardo Banks, ‘Ello Baby,’ ‘Ma Lo,’ and ‘Diet’ among others. Others craned their necks from the twin overhead bridge to catch a glimpse of the action.
The premiere was the Lagos leg of the global release of ’49-99′ which premiered earlier in London and New York. It was powered by Boomplay and Universal Music Group.
“As an artiste, I cannot shy away from the people,” Tiwa Savage said.
“It was very important to me to connect with them and let them know how important they are to my growth as an artiste.”
The title, 49-99, derives from Fela’s music, ‘Suffering and Smiling’, which depicts the suffering Nigerians endure boarding public transportation which in Lagos was for decades depicted by molue, the yellow with black striped modulated Mercedes Benz 911 or Bedford trucks.
Tiwa revealed that she worked with Olamide, saying: “When I got to him (Olamide), he had already started writing the line, ’49 siting, 99 standing’. And automatically, I knew it was a line from Fela’s song, ‘Suffering and Smiling’. I loved it immediately because I feel like as an artiste now getting global recognition, I have a responsibility to speak on a lot of things that are affecting a lot of Nigerians. There’s a time and place for everything. Music, we want to dance, but I wanted my first introduction to the rest of the world to have substance. That’s why the song is very special to me. 49 sitting, 99 standing, we all know is from the molue bus where you have twice as many people standing.
“That’s a reflection of the poverty. We don’t have molue anymore but we still have people hanging off buses, okada (commercial motorcycles) trying to get to work. You have mothers with babies on their back trying to get to work. So, I wanted this to speak on that. I’m not attacking anyone but I’m just that this is the reality that millions of Nigerians face and music is the tool to get the message out.”
According to Tosin Sorinola, Head of Marketing Boomplay: “Getting behind Tiwa Savage for this event was a no-brainer as she’s one of the most celebrated female acts in Africa while Boomplay is also the #1 music streaming platform in Africa. Thus, a win-win connection for both parties.
“As a platform with over 54 million users globally and 7 million tracks which is expected to grow to 12 million by the end of 2019, we believe that we are in the position to partner with as many artistes as possible in order to encourage creatives and gradually build a buying culture amongst the music community in general.”
Earlier, Tiwa had joined executives of Ikoyi/Obalende Local Council Development Area (LCDA) including the Chairman, Honourable Fuad Atanda-Lawal, at an empowerment event to present financial donations to over 600 beneficiaries, mainly market men and women.
Though Tiwa was born in the UK and has never boarded a molue, the artiste said she still connects with the suffering of the masses.