“Essence”, the song by Nigerian singer Wizkid, released on 13 August 2021 as the 18th track from his deluxe edition of his fourth studio album, Made in Lagos has reached a new peak.
The song which features Nigerian singer Tems, and Canadian singer, Justin Bieber, who wrote both the song alongside Wizkid — peaked at number 10 on the Billboard Hot 100.
It becomes Wizkid’s second, Tems’ first and Justin Bieber’s 25th top 10 hit.
“Essence” was produced by P2J and Legendury Beatz. The “sensual” song sees the trio express their desire for each other.
“Essence” is the first Nigerian song in history to chart on the Billboard Hot 100 and the Billboard Global 200.
Calling the track a perfect mix of Afropop and R&B, Pan African Music said the duo “present an ode to lust” as they “embody sexual desire, advocating a sense of reciprocity”.
Regina Cho of Revolt deemed the song a stand-out from Made in Lagos, calling Tems’s verse “sensual”. GRM Daily’s Courtney W called it a “silky, smooth” offering. Conversely, NME called the track “expendable”.
“Essence” was included in Spotify’s Song of the Summer playlist in June 2021, and in Barack Obama’s favourite songs of 2020 playlist.