Onika Maraj (born December 8, 1984), better known by her stage name Nicki Minaj, is an American rapper and singer-songwriter. In August 2009, Minaj signed to Young Money Entertainment with distribution from Universal Motown.
* 1 Early life
* 2 Music career
o 2.1 2004–2009: Career beginnings and mixtapes
o 2.2 2009–present: Collaborations and Pink Friday
* 3 Musical style and image
o 3.1 Image
o 3.2 Alter egos
o 3.3 Influences
* 4 Personal life
* 5 Discography
* 6 Award and nominations
* 7 References
* 8 External links
Minaj was born Onika Tanya Maraj in 1984, to parents of Indian and African descent. She lived in Trinidad with her grandmother until age 5 when she moved to Queens, New York. According to Minaj, her father drank alcohol, took drugs, and once tried to kill her mother by setting the house on fire. She attended Elizabeth Blackwell Middle School 210 and graduated from LaGuardia High School. At LaGuardia, a school specializing in music and the visual and performing arts, Minaj participated in the drama program. She once worked at a Red Lobster restaurant in the Bronx.
2004–2009: Career beginnings and mixtapes
Minaj created some mixtape tracks, and appeared in XXL magazine. In 2008 she won the Female Artist of the Year award at the Underground Music Awards. Minaj released Beam Me Up Scotty, another mixtape, in April 2009 which received positive coverage on both BET and MTV.
2009–present: Collaborations and Pink Friday
Minaj released her first single "Massive Attack" on April 13, 2010. The song features Sean Garrett, who produced the song along with Alex Da Kid. A music video for the single was filmed on March 16 in the desert near Lancaster, California with director Hype Williams. The music video for the single premiered on BET's 106 & Park on March 31 and features Sean Garrett, with a cameo appearance by model Amber Rose. The single was not successful, as it only reached number 22 on the US Bubbling Under Hot 100 Singles chart and number 65 on the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart. The song is a buzz single, however, and will not be included on her debut album.
Minaj then released "Your Love" as the first official single from her debut album, after the leaked version started receiving heavy airplay on the radio because of its inclusion on her Barbie World mixtape. The single went on to become Minaj's most successful single so far, peaking at 14 on the Billboard Hot 100, 7 on the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart, as well as topping the Rap Songs chart. Minaj has become the first female artist to top the chart unaccompanied since 2002. A music video for the single was filmed by Lil X during the 4th of July weekend and was released on July 21, 2010 .[dated info] The second single from the album, "Right Through Me", will be released near the album's release date.
Minaj announced via Twitter that her debut album, Pink Friday will be released on November 23, 2010, stating "Yes. It's time. November 23rd".