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*Nicki Minaj was born on this date in 1982. She is an Afro Caribbean rapper, singer-songwriter, and actress.
Onika Tanya Maraj-Petty was born in the Saint James district of Port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago, and raised in Queens of New York City; she gained public recognition after releasing the mixtapes Playtime Is Over (2007), Sucka Free (2008), and Beam Me Up Scotty (2009).
Early in her career, Minaj became known for her colorful costumes and wigs, her distinct flow, and the use of alter egos and accents, primarily British cockney. In 2010, Minaj released her debut studio album, Pink Friday (2010). It yielded Minaj's first top-five single, "Super Bass," peaking at number three. Her second album, Pink Friday: Roman Reloaded (2012), saw Minaj move towards a dance-pop and pop-rap sound. The album debuted and peaked at number one on the Billboard 200, with its lead single, "Starships", peaking at number five on the Hot 100 and reaching the top five charts in several countries.
Minaj's third and fourth studio albums, The Pinkprint (2014) and Queen (2018), marked a departure from her previous style and a return to her hip hop roots. The Pinkprint was acclaimed, with the second single, "Anaconda," reaching number two on the Hot 100. Queen featured the lead single "Chun-Li," which reached the top ten on the Hot 100.
In 2019, Minaj released a collaboration with Karol G, "Tusa," which became the longest-running number-one single on the Argentina Hot 100, having spent six months at number one on the chart. The song also has become the most-streamed female collaboration on Spotify. Her feature on the remix of Doja Cat's "Say So" and her collaboration with 6ix9ine, "Trollz," both released in 2020, marked her first and second number-one singles on the Hot 100, respectively, with the latter making her the second female rapper to debut atop the chart in two decades after Lauryn Hill in 1998. Minaj became the first female artist to reach 100 entries on the Hot 100 chart, currently, the only female rapper with 100 entries and is the only female artist with 100 plus entries besides Taylor Swift.
Minaj has nineteen top 10 singles on the chart, the most for any female rapper so far, with four of those being solo songs. Minaj has received numerous accolades and was named Billboard's number one female rapper and Billboard's seventh most successful female artist of the decade out of all the genres. Minaj is also the highest-paid female rapper, charging up to $500,000 for a feature. In 2016, Minaj was included on the annual Time list of the 100 most influential people in the world. Dubbed as the "Queen of Rap" by several media outlets, Minaj is one of the most influential and bestselling female artists of all time, with 137 million records sold worldwide. She has garnered praise for her animated rapping and songwriting, which utilizes metaphors, double entendres, and wordplay.
Outside of music, Minaj's film career has included voice roles in the animated films Ice Age: Continental Drift (2012) and The Angry Birds Movie 2 (2019), as well as supporting roles in the comedy films The Other Woman (2014) and Barbershop: The Next Cut (2016). She also appeared as a judge on the twelfth season of American Idol in 2013. She is the most-followed rapper on Instagram.
In 2020, Minaj donated $25,000 to the "St. Jude's Home for Girls" school after visiting the school in her native country of Trinidad. In a speech, Minaj encouraged the girls to push through hard obstacles, referencing her experience with domestic violence. In 2021, a six-part documentary miniseries will be released following the making of Queen.
Minaj announced in September 2021 that she would not attend the 2021 Met Gala due to the COVID-19 vaccine requirement. She stated that she has avoided public appearances and traveling after contracting the virus and having to quarantine her son. Shortly after, Minaj recommended other people get the vaccine and set up a Twitter poll on COVID-19 vaccine brands. She tweeted that she was sure she would get vaccinated herself because of touring. In May 2022, Olivia Truffaut-Wong alleged that Minaj may have gotten vaccinated anyways, as the 2022 Met Gala (which Minaj attended) requires proof of vaccination and a negative COVID-19 PCR test to attend.