Just about every hip-hop fan has an opinion about Nicki Minaj. Whether her ubiquity is seen as a blessing or a nuisance is to be debated, but her presence is unavoidable. The game has never been ashamed of crowing one femcee at a time and at the moment Minaj is Little Miss Popularity. But what do her predecessors think of her? Foxy Brown is a fan, Rah Digga says she’s “awesome,” Trina shared her 31st birthday with her, Lil Kim hasn’t commented and Eve…
“I am a fan of the fact that she’s a female MC in the game. I gotta be honest, I don’t really know many of her records. I’ve seen a few things, honestly I don’t [remember them] and I’m being really real. I don’t really know her that well,” she tells VIBE. “When she was on [the “My Chick Bad” music video] set, she was nice as shit. To me, if her music was dope and she would’ve been an asshole than I wouldn’t have been a fan. I’m more a fan of hers as a person.”
Though Eve—who met Minaj for the first time in late March and heard the final versions of Ludacris’ “My Chick Bad” a week before the Miami shoot—wasn’t too familiar with the Young Money front-woman’s catalogue, she did think her verse was one-of-a-kind. “I mean, I think it’s unique to who she is. It is what it is. You know what I mean? I thought it was dope,” she says.
“She definitely is a quirky chick. That’s a good word for her. When she had the Freddy Krueger gloves I was like ‘Wow.’ But at the same time, whatever you decide to do, especially in music, you gotta go hard and own it. You can’t be timid wearing Freddy Krueger gloves in a video. If you look insecure, people are going to be like ‘Why are you doing that?’ You gotta fucking own it and she did. I think that’s dope.“
But with Minaj’s growing omnipresence, does Eve feel threatened or propelled?
“Trust me, no one’s competition for me and that sounds cocky but I seriously live in such an Eve world. And not in a crazy-everything-is-me-bubble, it’s just that I’m bulding an empire,” the 31-year-old says. “I go on Twitter and people say ‘Yo, knock Nicki Minaj out of the box, but ultimately we’re all helping each other and I’m happy seeing these chicks in the game. It’s too much testosterone. When I see another female, my immediate reaction is not ‘Oh I gotta go and get my shit right.’ I got 900 other things going on. I can’t keep worrying about what’s coming up behind me.”
Eve is currently working on her fourth album, Lip Lock, set to be released later this year. —Tracy Garraud