|Inarguably one of the most distinguished voices in modern hip-hop, Nicki Minaj has gone from a relative unknown to a chart-topping, globetrotting musical wonder. Minaj’s sound blends elements of classic rap with modern day hip hop, electronic and trance, all set beneath her provocative and crowd-pleasing lyrics. She’s known for her elaborate stage performances, the provocative decor of which is said to rival the likes of Lady Gaga and Madonna. Her career began in 2007 and she hasn’t looked back since. Take in this pop culture phenomenon today by purchasing your Nicki Minaj tickets now!
Minaj’s real name is Onika Tanya Minaj, and she was born in Trindiad and Tobago before moving to Queens. Growing up in New York City, Minaj always showed a passion for music and performance. As early as elementary school, Minaj was excelling at the clarinet and frequently participated in school performances. Evidence of her knack for entertainment showed early on, as Minaj became interested in acting while still in her youth. Ultimately, this passion would gain her admittance to LaGuardia High School, a performing arts school in Manhattan. Though she would gain local repute for her acting and was cast in an off-Broadway show, her career as an actress never quite took off. Fortunately, she had also spent these formative years building an interest in musical performance.
Career beginnings and discovery
Minaj rapped with a number of local New York Groups, but found that solo work came to suit her best. After several small successes in collaborative projects, she began to record solo work and submit it to local record producers. In time, she caught the attention of Dirty Money Entertainment, and was signed to the label briefly in 2007. Throughout her time with Dirty Money, Minaj released several mixtapes, all of which experienced only moderate success but caught the attention of larger parties in the music industry. Among these projects were Playtime is Over, Beam Me Up, Scotty and Sucka Free. While only a handful of songs from these tapes charted, she did well enough to catch the attention of New Orleans-based rap legend Lil Wayne, who gained an interest in Minaj quickly. After hearing her perform, Wayne became so impressed with Minaj’s music that he signed her to Young Money Entertainment, a label owned by himself and fellow rapper Birdman.
Breakthrough and critical acclaim
Minaj wasted little time once signing with Young Money Entertainment, quickly appearing as a featured artist on tracks such as “Bedrock, ” “5 Star Chick” and “Roger That. ” She achieved national notoriety through these tracks and was able to release her debut record, Pink Friday, in 2010. The album was a commercial hit, selling well both domestically and abroad and establishing Minaj as a force in the rap world. Since then, she has gone on to release three further albums including Pink Friday: Roman Reloaded, The Other Woman and The PinkPrint.