Nicki Minaj's Return to Rap is No One's Choice But Hers, Thank Goodness — VIDEO
Nicki Minaj was the top female earner in hip-hop in 2013 to the surprise of absolutely no one. From the moment she showed up on the scene, she was basically killing it. Of course, like any celebrity, she is not without her controversies. The most recent and cringe-worthy one was the supposed cover art for Minaj's single "Lookin’ Ass" featuring Malcolm X, but even that was just part of a larger controversy surrounding her. Minaj has been catching heat as far back as 2012 for selling out with her album Pink Friday: Reloaded. The album featured a heavy mix of rap and pop and gave her one of her most successful singles to date, "Starships", which is a club anthem if there ever was one. For a woman who built her career on her rapping and hard beats, the bubblegum pop of her second album came as a crushing disappointment that she seems to have been trying to make up for ever since. Perhaps that's why Minaj has announced that The Pink Print will return her to her rap roots.
We've heard those words before from Brian "Birdman" Williams, the head of her record label, and we were understandably worried about the pressure on Minaj. She's known for being outspoken in her words, in her songs, in her outfits and the fact that she seemed to be bowing to everyone else's expectations of what she should sound like was troubling. While "Lookin' Ass" was an amazing single, "Chi-Raq" left a lot to be desired and almost didn't sound like Minaj at all — at least not the Minaj we've gotten to know on a track when she's having fun with it.
However, we need not have worried. Minaj not only acknowledges that concern, she dismisses it.
"['Chi-Raq' and 'Lookin' Ass'] are back to my hip-hop roots. And I don't think it's something that I'm necessarily trying to do. As soon as I started working on my new album, that's just the songs that I've been writing," she said in an interview with MTV. "But there are other types of music on the album that I'm super excited for... It's nothing like [those] so I don't want people to think that I am only going to be doing that kind of music. I'm just going to do what my heart tells me to do."
So far, Minaj's heart has been nothing if not on point. She's never been afraid to work with a wide variety of artists, put out a wide variety of music, and make appearances in everything from a documentary to reality TV to her upcoming film debut. Minaj isn't just an artist; she's an entire franchise that is still growing and learning and changing. To cage her into a single label is to do her a great disservice so it's great to hear that she isn't allowing herself to be caged. Whatever she's done, and whatever she will do in the future, it will be done on her own terms, which is the really important part. Bad bitches like her are hard to come by.
Watch the interview below.