Nigerian-born Tiwa Savage, widely regarded as the Queen of Afrobeats, has released her new single 49-99 via Motown Records.
Since signing her international deal with Universal Music Group, the explosive track will be her first release with Motown Records who serves as her US label.
“We are beyond excited to work with Tiwa Savage, one of Africa’s most talented and prolific singer-songwriters of this generation. Tiwa Savage has been at the forefront of creating music from the continent that connects people from around the globe. It is Tiwa’s undeniable gifts, immense talent, work ethic and resilience that has prepared her for this next chapter and we at Motown are proud to support her on this journey,” Ethiopia Habtemariam, president of Motown Records and EVP of Capitol Music Group said.
While utterly infectious, the single makes a powerful statement about poverty.
“49-99 is a term coined from the hard life many Nigerians go through. A transit bus serves as a case study. It ought to have only 49 seated passengers, however due to poor economic conditions, we often have nearly twice that number of passengers standing, 99,” Savage said.
Savage said the song encourages the young to put down the sense of inheritance and work for what they desire in life, for a better tomorrow.
“We can’t sit on our old glories and expect things to change for the better. 49-99 also addresses some political leaders who, instead of focusing on the growth of a nation, are there just for the money and having affairs with underage girls – while the citizenry is hustling hard to make a daily living,” she said.
Savage recently recorded Keys to the Kingdom, a song that she co-wrote for the soundtrack The Lion King: The Gift after being hand-picked to do so by Beyoncé. 2018 was a remarkable year all-around for her as she was named Best African Act at the MTV European Music Awards, making history as the first female to win the award. She was handpicked by Coldplay’s Chris Martin to perform alongside Beyoncé, Ed Sheeran and JAY Z live at the Global Citizen Festival to a 70 000-strong audience and millions across the globe.