Barbz and Kenz a new Nicki Minaj album is closer than you think. Nicki’s Cash Money boss, Birdman, has revealed that the rapper is prepping the release of her Pink Friday follow-up for the first quarter in 2012, which presumably means that we’ll soon hear what the “Super Bass” songstress has been cooking up for the highly-anticipated release.There’s even some talk that Nicki, who is reportedly hard at work on her sophomore LP, could drop a new single by year’s end. Hold on to your pink wig.
“Nicki’s back in the studio, so we’re looking to drop Nicki in the first quarter,” Brian “Birdman” Williams said in an interview with Billboard.com. He went on to dish that Minaj could potentially drop new music sometime before year-end. “Maybe this year? I don’t know,” he added about releasing a single before 2012 strikes. “We’re really thinking it out. But she’s in the studio, and we’re looking real soon, because she’s ready to go and we’re ready to go with her.”
Earlier this month, BET reported that Minaj posted a blog post about how her alter-ego Roman would play a part in her new music. Although the post was later removed, the MC teased that Roman is out for revenge.
“Roman will be in rare form this time. You know why? Cuz he no longer gives a f—,” she wrote. “He has two more weeks in boarding school. We’re going to pick him up now. When he lands, he will address the nation in the form of music. He will also announce the date.”
Whether or not Roman will have anything to do with this record, Minaj’s Pink Friday producer Kane Beatz recently told MTV News, “We got one so far. She’s in L.A. goin’ crazy. … She just started, so she’s really picking her music and picking the songs. She’s real selective. She’ll pick all the beats before she even starts writing, so right now, we’re just getting music together, and it’s goin’ crazy right now.” [Source]
1. Tune This
2. Team Player – feat. Birdman
3. Fore Play
4. They Love Me – feat. Drake & Nicki Minaj
5. John (If I Die Today) – feat. Rick Ross
6. No Competition
7. Holy Grail (History) – feat. Kanye West
8. Carter Cash – feat. Jay-Z
9. 6 Foot 7 Foot – feat. Corey Gunz
10. Play My Game – feat. Tech N9ne
11. Anne – feat. Swizz Beatz
12. Street Life
13. Hard Talk – feat. Bon Iver & Game
14. Fall From Grace – feat. Eminem
15. Brain Dead – feat. Gucci Mane
16. No Trust
17. Maybe She Will – feat. Drake & Rick Ross
18. My Legacy
It’s taken 11 weeks, but Nicki Minaj’s Pink Friday has finally hit No. 1. The Young Money rapper sits atop the Billboard 200, selling an additional 45,000 copies of her debut album to push her sales past the one million mark.
The Harajuku Barbie is one of the few artists to enter below the top spot and later claim it as their own, according to Billboard. Last year, Lil Wayne’s I Am Not a Human Being was the sole album to bow outside of No. 1 and then top the chart further on in time. Pink Friday debuted at No. 2 in November and has charted every week since inside the top 10.
“We finally did it! PINK FRIDAY is the #1 Album in the United States of America!!!!! *faints* thank u sooooo much for the continued support!” tweeted the humbled raptress, tickled pink.
Elsewhere on the chart, Bruno Mars rises from No. 5 to 4 with Doo-Wops & Hooligans, while Rihanna’s Loud moves 13-5. Eminem’s Recovery, nominated for Album of the Year at this Sunday’s Grammys, rests at No. 9.
Pink has turned platinum. Nicki Minaj’s debut album, Pink Friday, has been certified platinum after shipping 1 million units in the U.S. since it dropped on November 22. According to the RIAA, it received the certification on December 17, less than one month after its release.
“Pink Friday remains the #2 Rap Album and the #4 Album in the country on Billboard’s 200. Thank you for your continued support,” wrote Nicki on Twitter after her album moved up from No. 8 to 4 on this week’s Billboard 200.
Additionally, her collabo with Trey Songz, “Bottoms Up,” crosses the double-platinum threshold this week. “And to top it all off, ‘Bottoms Up’ is double platinum. S/O 2 @TreySongz who woulda thought… *sings* all around the wooorld do ya hear me?” said the Harajuku Barbie.
Throughout the year, one of the biggest question marks was Nicki Minaj’s ‘Pink Friday.’ Her debut album had tons of buzz, but many questioned how a hip-hop record by a female would sell in this day and age. Would Nicki be able to steer her own ship to the big numbers demanded by record executives and expected by fans? Well, the answer is a resounding “yes” as ‘Pink Friday’ has gone gold and even outsold Kanye West’s monstrous ‘My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy’ over the past week.
‘Pink Friday,’ which was officially released three weeks ago, pushed past 500,000 units by moving an additional 81,900 in the past week. With these steady sales numbers, the collection held down the No. 6 spot on the Billboard Top 200 and beat Kanye’s weekly numbers by approximately 16,000 copies.
Minaj hasn’t been shy about the fact that her record outsold all female hip-hop artists other than Lauryn Hill in its first week, but sustained sales are what go beyond the hype and show if the public is truly connecting to the music beyond the usual first-week marketing.
In a recent interview with Rolling Stone, Minaj talked about future expectations for herself. “There’s some songs I just won’t write because I’m afraid of it not meeting my expectation of what I know that song could be,” she said. “I don’t compete with other people, I compete with myself.”
With one of the only gold hip-hop albums of the year, Minaj has set the competition bar pretty high.
Nicki Minaj is in good company. With her debut album Pink Friday bowing at No. 2 on the Billboard 200 this week, the Young Money rapper has officially broken the record for second highest first-week sales by a female MC in Billboard’s history, moving 375,190 units.
Lauryn Hill holds the title for highest opening week sales by a female hip-hop act with her solo debut The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill, which sold 423,000 copies in September 1998. But Nicki points out that Ms. Hill wasn’t categorized under the “Hip-Hop/Rap” genre.
“Pink Friday has the 2nd highest debut week in the HISTORY of FEMALE RAP w/375,190 units sold. Thank u sooo much 4 supporting this project!” tweeted Nicki, later adding, “Interesting. Lauryn sold 422,000 in the 1st wk w/Miseducation! That album wasn’t categorized as HipHop/Rap under ‘genre.’ So Pink Friday under the ‘HipHop/Rap’ genre has the highest selling first week from a female in HISTORY.”
Before Nicki, Missy Elliott sold the most first-week copies under the “Hip-Hop/Rap” genre with her 2002 album Under Construction (259,000). “I am in the company of 2 amazing groundbreaking women & for that, I am beyond grateful. S/O to Lauryn and Missy. #PinkFriday,” wrote the Harajuku Barbie.
Congrats are in order! #TeamMinaj!
Nicki Minaj may be an upstart artist, but the Lil Wayne protégé handles her business like a veteran.
For “Fly,” from her debut, Pink Friday, Minaj reached out to producer J.R. Rotem (Britney Spears, Rick Ross, Leona Lewis) to helm the track, an inspirational tune that was a last-minute addition to the album.
“Near the tail end of her project, I came into the studio and I had some tracks [for her]. That was one of the ones I was excited about,” Rotem told MTV News. “When I played it for her, she knew instantly: ‘Yes, this is the record.’ She connected with it immediately. I could just tell she was excited by it, which excited me.”
The demo version of “Fly” featured a studio session singer on the hook, but Minaj had another idea, namely Rihanna.
“That would be great,” the producer recalled telling Minaj. “But getting Rihanna to do a hook for you is easier said than done. He added, “I think that speaks to Nicki’s star power. I said, ‘Yeah, she’s definitely first choice.’ ”
Time passed, Rotem e-mailed Nicki and the two went back and forth until the rapper told him Rihanna had agreed to sing on the track.
“It took time because she was promoting her own album and traveling overseas,” he said. “It happened, and I heard it when Nicki gave me the record and it really was one of those incredible things that was really a blessing. It manifested. She said she wanted it and it happened.”
What’s your favorite Pink Friday track? Tell us in the comments!
This week is one of the biggest for new album releases in recent memory, with high-profile albums from Kanye West, My Chemical Romance, Ke$ha, Jay-Z and Justin Bieber all hitting the streets. Those albums are all coming from artists who have established followings and track records, but there is one debut coming out this week that has hip-hop fans turning their heads and raising their eyebrows. Through a series of well-received mixtapes and guest spots, Nicki Minaj has very quickly made a name for herself as a killer lyricist and a dynamic rhymer with as unique a style as we’ve seen in the rap world. Her hotly-anticipated debut album Pink Friday is out now, and it appears to be one of the most polarizing albums to hit the mainstream in a while.
Some of the critical reactions have been extremely enthusiastic. Entertainment Weekly gave the album a B+ rating, and writer Brad Wete said that though Nicki has made a name for herself with wacky voices and strange characters, it’s her focus on fundamentals that really puts Pink Friday over. “Oddly enough, the accented voices and self-assured rhymes that propelled Nicki to stardom are hardly what make this a solid album,” he wrote. “It’s those moments when the eccentric wigs are off and aliases put away that the best songs are revealed. Like when she steps off of her throne, vulnerable and helpless on ‘Save Me,’ uncovering a talent she kept hidden throughout her sidekick days: She sings. Well, if I might add.”
Allison Stewart of The Washington Post agreed, noting that Minaj manages to show a surprising number of different colors on her album. She specifically calls out the quieter tunes, noting “to anyone who heard [Pink Friday’s] early, hardcore-heavy leaks, these softer, usually romantic tracks may feel like compromises, meant to reassure mainstream listeners that Minaj is a semi-proper girl with, you know, feelings, not just a piranha with a gymnastic flow.”
The Los Angeles Times found Pink Friday a little uneven but inspiring for its boldness. “Pink Friday shows Minaj is on the cusp — considering her facility with accents, she could be the perfect person to find a new patois, one that’s built of separate musical languages but without breaking any of them down,” writer Margaret Wappler observed. “Or she could get caught in the net, punished by the relentless category police or her own doubt of how far she can roam. But one thing is for certain: she’s got the fight and the imagination on her side — and a good neon wig never hurt a girl either.”
In fact, even the negative reviews gave Minaj props for experimenting. Associated Press writer Mesfin Fekadu got a little tired of all of Minaj’s boasting but was inspired whenever she switched it up. “When Minaj is not caught up with being No. 1, she shines,” Fekadu wrote. “On ‘Save Me,’ she strips down and presents a more humble side of herself. The Drake-assisted ‘Moment 4 Life’ has Minaj excited about her accomplishments — and cherishing her winning moment. As she should be.” And Marc Hogan from Spin is a little disappointed by Pink Friday but is still glad Nicki Minaj exists. “As an MC showcase, the album falls short, with no verses as memorable as those she dropped for Robin Thicke, Usher, Trey Songz, Ludacris or Mariah Carey,” he wrote in his review. “But this self-styled Harajuku Barbie certainly can compete with the big boys, and she doesn’t let anyone forget it.”
What do you think of Nicki Minaj’s new album? Let us know in the comments!
Don’t miss the documentary “Nicki Minaj: My Time Now,” premiering Sunday, November 28, at 10 p.m. ET/PT on MTV!