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Thursday, October 21, 2021

An analysis of Nicki Minaj’s iconic “The Pinkprint”

No one can do the rap game like Queen Nicki Minaj

Very few artists could ever garner the media attention, musical success or have the lyrical genius of the woman who revolutionized the rap game—Nicki Minaj. Onika Tanya Maraj-Petty, professionally known as Nicki Minaj, and crowned as Queen of the Barbz, is the woman who has defined a generation of music.

The queer icon, the woman known her for comical Instagram lives and the person who constantly reminds her army of Barbz—her fans—to stay in school, is known for her rapping prowess, genius lyrics and a ride-or-die fan base. Minaj is considered one of the highest selling female rappers of all time, has released four studio albums and has sold over 3.7 million copies of her music. Her critically acclaimed platinum album, “The Pinkprint,” is one of her most serious and lyrically diverse albums. The deluxe version of the album comes with 19 songs. 

There are somber tones laced throughout the discography. In the song “All Things Go,” Minaj reminisces on her past, how far she’s come, how nothing in life is permanent and that “All things go, all things go.” Listeners are given an intimate and sardonic peek into Minaj’s personal life with “The Crying Game” featuring Jessie Ware. As Minaj raps “How come you never show it? All this love you speak of/All I want is to love and be loved (To love and be loved).” 

The album takes a lighter turn with the song, “The Night Is Still Young,” in which Minaj reminds her fans to not worry too much and that “life is a journey/I just wanna enjoy the ride.” 

Yet, the powerhouse, confident and borderline cocky Minaj that fans love and adore makes an appearance with hits like “Feeling Myself” featuring Beyoncé, where the two icons remind the Barbz that “we dope girls we flawless/We the poster girls for all this (Uh).” 

A personal favorite, “Win Again,” is the perfect hype song to remind us that we always come out on top no matter how hard life gets and that “I win again, and I win again.” Minaj reminds us to never listen to haters because their “opinion is invalid,” and to “Go against me, then you made a mistake.” 

On the other hand, there is the empowering, boost of personal-confidence and gym anthem, “Get On Your Knees,” featuring Ariana Grande. In the song, Minaj tells her listeners to find their inner confidence and remind themselves that their “ass is a present.” 

Even though the song is sexually-explicit in nature, it still holds the familiar, Nicki Minaj-approved messaging of confidence, self-love and recognizing our self-worth.

Whether you want raps that make you take a pause and think twice about the double entendres Minaj just dropped, the perfect gym song or just want to have an angry, emotional rap session in your car, “The Pinkprint” is the album for every occasion. 

In addition, the album perfectly compliments her brand new album, “Beam Me Up Scotty,” which has many Barbz and listeners excited for the new golden era of Minaj. 

Nicki Minaj is a one of a kind artist who changed the rap game for everyone, and the woman who inexplicably changed me—for the better. When I heard her soul-touching rap, at time stamp 3:36, in Kanye West’s, 2010 hit song “Monster”; the only person who constantly inspires me to work hard as she once said “broke people should never laugh,” and I enjoy laughing.

Written by: Muhammad Tariq — art@theaggie.org

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