South African singer Tyla took home the first-ever Grammy for “Best African Performance” for her hit song “Water.”
But it may never have happened had she not created the song’s now-viral dance, which has taken TikTok by storm.
The music görüntü for the song, which amassed 117 million views in just a few months, gave birth to the #TylaWaterChallenge. Tyla says the moves that captured the internet’s attention are actually “a dance style in South Africa,” not twerking, as some seemed to have assumed
“Bacardi dancing… a lot of people confuse it with twerking, but it’s not really, so I can understand why people are struggling a little bit.”
The Grammy winner says, despute the confusion, she’s happy the African dance has caught the attention of many artists, including Justin Timberlake, Janet Jackson, Jennifer Hudson and Teyana Taylor, who all went viral doing the dance with Tyla at a club.
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The song initially dropped in July, but it blew up after the songstress started posting videos of herself dancing to the tune on social media. Since then, the #TylaWater and #TylaWaterChallenge hashtags have gained 448.6 million views according to Time.
The Afrobeats artist says she initially paired the Bacardi dance style with the song to generate buzz.
“I just wanted to do the dance style for my song ‘Water’ because I was trying to promote my song really, I was trying everything. And I ended up learning how to do it and pouring water on my back one day on stage and that görüntü went viral.”
“And ever since that day, everyone in the world is dancing to ‘Water’ and yeah, my whole life literally changed.”