American Idol Wiki
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Background[]

Onika Tanya Maraj-Petty (née Maraj; born December 8, 1982), known professionally as Nicki Minaj (/mɪˈnɑːʒ/ min-AHZH), is a Trinidadian-born rapper based in the United States. She is often regarded as one of the greatest female rappers of her generation, as well as being one of the most influential rappers of all time. Minaj first gained recognition after releasing three mixtapes between 2007 and 2009. She is known for her musical versatility, animated flow in her rapping, alter egos and accents. She is also credited with the revival of female rap in the mainstream.

Onika Tanya Maraj was born on December 8, 1982, in the Saint James district of Port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago. Her father was Robert Maraj (1956–2021), a financial executive and part-time gospel singer of Dougla (Afro-Trinidadian mother and Indo-Trinidadian father) descent. Her mother, Carol Maraj, is also a gospel singer with Afro-Trinidadian ancestry. Carol worked in payroll and accounting departments during Minaj's youth.

Her debut album, Pink Friday (2010), topped the U.S. Billboard 200 chart. Its fifth single, "Super Bass", reached number three on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 chart and was certified diamond by the RIAA. Minaj's follow-up album, Pink Friday: Roman Reloaded (2012) explored dance-pop. The lead single, "Starships", peaked in the top five worldwide. Her third album, The Pinkprint (2014) explored more personal topics and marked a return to her hip hop roots. Its second single, "Anaconda" debuted at number two on the hot 100 and became the first music video by a solo female rapper to reach one billion views on YouTube. She released her fourth album, Queen, in 2018 and it spawned the U.S. top ten single “Chun-Li”. In 2019, her collaboration with Karol G, "Tusa", became the longest-running number-one single on the Argentina Hot 100 chart. The lead single of her forthcoming fifth studio album, "Super Freaky Girl" became the second solo song by a female rapper to debut at number one in the U.S. Minaj also has achieved a string of chart topping hits as a featured artist including “Bang Bang”, “Fefe”, “Trollz”, and “Say So”.

American Idol[]

On September 16, 2012, Minaj joined Randy Jackson, pop icon Mariah Carey and country singer Keith Urban as a judge for season 12 of American Idol. She became known on the show for her honesty and willingness to give advice and also showed a tendency to give the contestants cute or funny nicknames.

Minaj announced on May 30, 2013 that she would not be a judge anymore.

Criticism[]

Despite being praised by some for bringing some honesty and directness that the show had been missing since the departure of Simon Cowell, Minaj received criticism from people who claimed that she had no right being on the show due to her being a rapper, not a singer. Many accused her of having no talent. Others said that her honesty and occasional bluntness in her critiques was very off-putting. Some even accused her of being very rude and mean. Some critics even went so far as to say that Minaj drove away the show's core audience. Also, many blame Minaj for the show's drop in the ratings even though other factors played into that. She was even called "immature" and a bully especially after getting into a Twitter feud with contestant Devin Velez after his elimination and calling Mariah Carey "bitter" and "insecure" on Twitter after Carey made a supposedly snide remark about Minaj not ever having had a number 1 hit on the Billboard Hot 100 while she was giving feedback on a contestant's performance.

Post Idol[]

Since her time on the show, Minaj has been busy working on her music as well as acting, appearing in the 2013 film The Other Woman opposite Cameron Diaz. She even had season 12 Idol alum Burnell Taylor perform with her on her song "Pills N Potions", which peaked at number 2 on the Billboard Hot Rap Songs chart, at the 2014 BET Awards, which created a buzz on Twitter and social media.

Minaj has also since achieved 3 #1’s on the Billboard Hot 100 with “Say So (with Doja Cat)”, “Trollz (with 6ix9ine)” and “Super Freaky Girl”; two occuring in 2020 and one, being her first solo song to reach the top of the chart, in 2022.

Official Account[]

Personal Life[]

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Discography[]

  • Pink Friday (2010)
  • Pink Friday: Roman Reloaded (2012)
  • The Pinkprint (2014)
  • Queen (2018)
  • Pink Friday 2 (2023)
American Idol
Seasons
(FOX) ·1 ·2 ·3 ·4 ·5 ·6 ·7 ·8 ·9 ·10 ·11 ·12 ·13 ·14 ·15 — (ABC) ·16 ·17 ·18 ·19 ·20 ·21 ·22
Judges
 ·Simon Cowell (Seasons 1-9) ·Paula Abdul (Seasons 1-8) ·Randy Jackson (Seasons 1-12)
 ·Kara DioGuardi (Seasons 8-9) ·Ellen DeGeneres (Season 9) ·Jennifer Lopez (Seasons 10-11|13-15)
 ·Steven Tyler (Seasons 10-11) ·Nicki Minaj (Season 12) ·Mariah Carey (Season 12) ·Keith Urban (Seasons 12-15)
 ·Harry Connick, Jr. (Seasons 13-15) ·Katy Perry (Seasons 16-22) ·Lionel Richie (Seasons 16+) ·Luke Bryan (Seasons 16+)
Personnel
 ·Ryan Seacrest (Seasons 1+) ·Brian Dunkleman (Season 1) ·Simon Fuller (Seasons 1-15) ·Nigel Lythgoe (Seasons 1-7/10-12) ·Megan Wolflick (Seasons 14+) ·Jimmy Iovine (Seasons 10-12) ·Scott Borchetta (Seasons 14-15) ·Bobby Bones (Seasons 16-19) ·Rickey Minor (Seasons 4-9/13-15) ·Ray Chew (Seasons 10-12) ·Kristopher Pooley (Seasons 16+) ·Michael Orland (Seasons 1-17) ·Debra Byrd (Seasons 1-10|) ·Peggi Blu (Seasons 10-11) ·Peisha McPhee (Seasons 10-13) ·Adriana McPhee (Seasons 17+) ·Devin Velez (S12; Seasons 22+) ·Allison Iraheta (S8; Seasons 13-15) ·Felicia Barton (S8; Seasons 16+)
Winners
 ·Kelly Clarkson ·Ruben Studdard ·Fantasia Barrino ·Carrie Underwood ·Taylor Hicks ·Jordin Sparks ·David Cook
 ·Kris Allen ·Lee DeWyze ·Scotty McCreery ·Phillip Phillips ·Candice Glover ·Caleb Johnson ·Nick Fradiani
 ·Trent Harmon ·Maddie Poppe ·Laine Hardy ·Just Sam ·Chayce Beckham ·Noah Thompson ·Iam Tongi ·Abi Carter
Runners-Up
 ·Justin Guarini ·Clay Aiken ·Diana DeGarmo ·Bo Bice ·Katharine McPhee ·Blake Lewis ·David Archuleta ·Adam Lambert ·Crystal Bowersox ·Lauren Alaina ·Jessica Sanchez ·Kree Harrison ·Jena Irene ·Clark Beckham ·La'Porsha Renae ·Caleb Lee Hutchinson ·Alejandro Aranda ·Arthur Gunn ·Willie Spence () ·HunterGirl ·Megan Danielle ·Will Moseley
Notable Alumni
 ·Alex Lambert ·Alex Preston ·Allegra Miles ·Angie Miller ·Anilee List ·Anoop Desai ·Beane ·Benson Boone ·Briston Maroney
 ·Brooke White ·Carly Smithson ·Casey Abrams ·Casey Bishop ·Cassandra Coleman ·Chris Daughtry ·Colton Dixon ·Danny Gokey ·David Brown ·DeAndre Brackensick ·Elise Testone ·Elliott Yamin ·Francisco Martin ·Fritz Hager ·Gabby Barrett
 ·Grace Kinstler ·Graham DeFranco ·Haley Reinhart ·Hollie Cavanagh ·Hunter Metts ·Jack Blocker ·Jacob Lusk
 ·James Durbin ·JAX ·Jen Hirsh ·Jennifer Hudson ·Jeremiah Lloyd Harmon ·Jessica Meuse ·Jimmie Allen ·Joey Cook
 ·Josh Gracin ·Joshua Ledet ·Jurnee ·Kaibrienne ·Katie Stevens ·Kayla Mickelsen ·Kellie Pickler ·Laci Kaye Booth ·LaToya London ·Lauren Daigle ·Lauren Spencer-Smith ·Leah Marlene ·Margie Mays ·Mario Vázquez ·Mary Jo Young ·Matt Giraud
 ·Megan Joy ·Melinda Doolittle ·Michael J. Woodard ·Nadia Turner ·Naima Adedapo ·Nikko Smith ·Paris Bennett
 ·Paul McDonald ·Phil Stacey ·Quentin Alexander ·Rayvon Owen ·Ricky Braddy ·Sanjaya Malakar ·Shubha Vedula ·Skylar Laine ·Sophia Wackerman ·Tamyra Gray ·Tim Halperin ·Todrick Hall ·Tori Kelly ·Vonzell Solomon ·Wé Ani ·Zachariah Smith
Coronation Songs
 ·"A Moment Like This" ·"Flying Without Wings" ·"I Believe" ·"Inside Your Heaven" ·"Do I Make You Proud?"
 ·"This Is My Now" ·"The Time of My Life" ·"No Boundaries" ·"Beautiful Day" ·"I Love You This Big" ·"Home"
 ·"I Am Beautiful" ·"As Long as You Love Me" ·"Beautiful Life" ·"Falling" ·"Going, Going, Gone"
 ·"Flame" ·"Rise Up" ·"23" ·"One Day Tonight" ·"I'll Be Seeing You" ·"This Isn't Over"
R.†.P.
 ·Nikki McKibbin ·Rickey Smith ·Leah LaBelle ·Marque Lynche ·Mandisa ·Michael Johns ·Joanne Borgella ·C.J. Harris
 ·Alexis Cohen ·Austin Sisneros ·Jairon Jackson ·Mary Iaconelli ·Paula Goodspeed
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