Amber Gran | A&E Editor | 02/09/2011
Step aside Lady Gaga and share the spotlight, you’ve got some competition. Granted, Onika Tanya Maraj, better known as her stage name Nicki Minaj, may be topping the charts via a different genre, but there is not much that separates the two: both are at the top of their game right now, both very strong women and both have an interesting and “unique” interpretation on fashion.
Now, I hadn’t really been completely obsessed with Minaj’s sound (as obsessed as I am with Gaga’s that is), until this last New Year’s Eve. I got snowed in and was royally ticked that I couldn’t go to the bar on my first New Years as a 21-year-old.
Regardless I spent the evening alone sipping wine and flipping between Ryan Seacrest and Carson Daly. I soon came across Minaj’s performances in between others that were leading up to the first time Lil Wayne had been on stage since being released from prison; she seemed to hold my attention well. While I was sulking and reflecting on the year, she began to sing her song, “Save Me.”
I couldn’t get the lyrics I heard out of my head:“I drove for miles just to find you and find myself…” This song stuck with me on a personal level. I knew that I had enjoyed listening to a few of her others that I had heard on the mainstream channels, so I went out and bought her new album, “Pink Friday.”
That track is my favorite of hers right now, but much to my surprise I found myself really liking her overall style, not to mention the cover and booklet looks like it came straight from the world of Barbie. Minaj absolutely kills tracks (in a good way) one after the other on there.
I have always had an appreciation for rap, but this is amazing. Not only does she have songs that define who she is and how far she has come, but Minaj is also joined on the album by some of the hottest mainstream artists today: Eminem, Rihanna, Will.I.Am, Drake, Natasha Bedingfield, and the not so favorite since his little Taylor Swift mishap, Kanye West. “Pink Friday,” was released on November 19 of last year.
Whether hip-hop is or isn’t your style, give a listen and you may be surprised to find that you like it. And hopefully you are able to lose yourself in a different sound.