Grammy winner Tyla talks “Water” dance, says upcoming debut has “even better” songs

Emma McIntyre/Getty Images for The Recording Academy

On February 4 at the Grammy Awards, Tyla won the first-ever Best African Performance trophy for her hit “Water.” When asked backstage what’s next for her, the South African singer said she was looking forward to her first album, which she teased was full of “bangers.”

“My debut album drops in March,” Tyla said of the self-titled project. “I’ve never released a project before. I’ve been working on it for over two years now, so I’m super proud of it.” She added that she’s been “perfecting my sound,” which she describes as a mixture of Afrobeats and Amapiano “but with pop and R&B.”

“My album is literally an introduction of myself and my sound, and there’s a lot of bangers on there, just like ‘Water’ and even better ones,” she noted. “So I’m looking forward to this year.”

One of the reasons why “Water” has become such a big hit has been the viral dance that goes along with it, which you can see Tyla doing in the video. That particular dance style is called “Bacardi,” Tyla explained backstage at the awards show.

“That’s a dance style in South Africa. And a lot of people confuse it with twerking, but it’s not really. So I can understand why people are struggling a little bit,” she said.

“But yeah, so I just wanted to do that dance style for my song ‘Water’ and I ended up learning how to do it and pouring water on my back one day on stage,” she continued. “And that video went viral.”

“And ever since that day, everyone in the world is dancing to ‘Water.’ And yeah, my whole life literally changed!” Tyla concluded.

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