Nicki Minaj’s inspirational rise to the top has been credited for reintroducing Hip-Hop to the mainstream in the mid ’10s and creating a clear path for female rappers hoping to follow in her footsteps.
Unfortunately, as many of her fans will remember, there was once a time (circa 2007) when the entertainment industry was opposed to investing in lady lyricists after seeing a number of Hip-Hop’s leading lose their selling power in the mid 2000s.
Today, the demo tape which would go on to change the landscape has reemerged.
Full story below…
The release was launched to secure the attention of a recording industry which was then riding high on waves powered by Rihanna‘s ‘Good Girl Gone Bad‘ era, the tail end of Beyonce‘s ‘B’Day’ campaign and the emergence of a rising starlet named Katy Perry.
Artists, who would one day become her peers and collaborators.
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#WBW Cleaning up look what I found?! @nickiminaj 1st demo! (Cover art done by Me!) She was SO proud of this and the work she did and was able to accomplish on her own! I think we took this around to EVERY LABEL and ALL of them told us “This will never work, female rap is dead” I was telling them “YALL BUGGIN SHES GONNA BE THE BIGGEST FEMALE RAPPER THAT EVA CAME OUT! WATCH!” Now look😌 Fun Fact: Even Nicki didn’t believe me! But I used to tell her all the time! ANOTHER FUN FACT: She opens up the demo by giving props to EVERY female rapper that came in the game before her and who inspired her!JUST STATING FACTS! #shealwayswroteherownraps #alwaysgaverespect #BARSONBARS #Priceless #thislikemyjordanrookiecard
The independent rapper, with help from her then-boyfriend Safaree Samuels and business partner Fendi ,went on to create one of the first social media campaigns the entertainment industry had ever seen to generate the fan base which would become the Barbz.
Quite interestingly, her ability to form a base with serious purchasing power came with major rewards when she was able to convert their support of her merchandise ( ‘Wanna Minaj’ T-Shirts etc) into album sales following the release of her debut album ‘Pink Friday’.
Hey @nickiminaj FOLLOW UR NUMBER 1 FAN ON TWITTER Fierce_Diva….
I BEEN ROCKIN WIT U SINCE 2007 (NICKI MINAJ live › http://ustre.am/4ymD)
— Kieshawnna B. (@BeautifulKie) November 15, 2009
Many of the techniques Minaj used to generate digital steam for herself are now widely used in the business to launch emerging artists online.