The Story Of Nicki Minaj Before Fame

Nicki Minaj is considered by many as the most successful and influential female rapper of all time. But before Nicki Minaj would show the world she's not afraid of working with the rap games biggest troll, before she would receive numerous awards and accolades including winning the BET award for best female hiphop artist for seven consecutive years as well as ten Grammy nominations, She was away from the limelight. 

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This article discusses her story before she became famous and has much lessons to be learnt by upcoming artists and individuals around the world.

Shes been called the queen of hiphop and for good reasons, it doesn't seem there is another female rapper as accomplished as Nicki Minaj at the time of this point.( it's open for an argument) but Im not so sure anyone will ever be able to reach the heights she's managed to reach over the course of her career.

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 From world tourists to films, shes also got the cosmetics from lipstick, the fragrances and others, one cant forget how much of an influencer she really is.  After collaborations with Six Nine and Doja cat with the latter getting the woman their first number one on the Billboard Hot 100 songs chart, it seems Nicki is simply setting herself up for another decade of success.

 However, all the success fame and fortune would come at a price as Nicki certainly didn't have any handouts and had to go through some tougher times before she would have an estimated net worth  between 80 to  100 million US dollars.

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Nicki Minaj was born Onika Tanya Maraj-Petty on December 8,1982  in saint james, Trinidad and Tobago. Her father Robert maraj is of Indo Trinidadian and African Italian origin while her mother Carol Maraj is of African Italian descent. Nicki has a younger brother Micaiah and younger sister Ming as well as an older brother Jelani and a halfbrother Brandon Lamar. If you know the situation regarding Nicki's oldest brother Jelani, well lets just say he's likely spending the rest of his life in jail and its for his involvement with a minor.

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But we got to get back to Nicki. In hopes of offering the children a better life, Nicki's parents moved to United States with her mother enrolling at Monroe college and her father getting a job at American Express while Nicki and her siblings would stay with their grandmother.


This led to her spending some of her youth in the port of Spain and it seems their culture certainly had an influence on a young Nicki, although her parents would eventually land jobs. Money was still tight which led to the family living in the neighborhood of Southside Jamaica in Queens New York. 

Nicki and her older brother would start calling queens home when she was just five years old but unfortunately for Nikki, things would go from bad to worse, her father was struggling with a drug addiction and would sell some of the family's furniture for drug money at times. Although her mother would work as a nurses aide, it was tough for the family to have a stable income.

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  As Roberts addiction got worse, he started being abusive towards Nicki's mother and even once tried to burn her house down, thankfully Nikki and her brother wouldn't be home at the time as her mother would actually have a dream the night before that this was going to happen and told him to stay with their friends that night.

In an interview with Nicki, she stated that  she was so scared, she didn't know what happened but everybody was running over to their house and she just looked, her house was gone. The house was burnt including her toys, all her clothes and memories.

 With Roberts addiction and abuse, Nicki, her brother and mother would live in fear with holes constantly being punched in walls, the cops making regular appearances and Nicki locking herself in her room. As a way of coping with a traumatic situation, Nicki would express herself artistically, pretending to be other people. Before she was Barbie, she was known as cookie.

While explaining to the new york magazine, Nicki stated that she would imagine being a new person to get away from the fighting and trauma. cookie was her first identity that stayed  for a while, she went on to Harajuku Barbie and then Nicki Minaj. Fantasy was her reality. 

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 Eventually, her father would get clean and family had a great relationship but that didn't happen overnight. Seeing her mother struggle and growing up close to God, Nicki  prayed that one day she'd be able to take care of her. 

In regards to education, Nicki would attend Clearance Witherspoon public school for Elementary where she would play clarinet and sing in the choir. In just 12 years old she write her first rap and with ambitions uh performing would attend Fiorello H LaGuardia High School of Music and Art and Performing Arts for her high school years.

 Each student had to choose a specific field of study with the options of dance, drama, art, vocal music, instrumental music and technical theatre. With hopes of being the next Monika which is one of Nicki's biggest idols, she auditioned for the vocal music program. Unfortunately, Nicki failed her singing audition and ended up in a drama program.

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  At just 15,  she would have an abortion, telling Rolling Stone how she thought  she was going to die "I was a teenager it was the hardest thing I'd ever gone through it'd be contradictory if I said I wasn't pro-choice I wasn't ready I didn't have anything to offer a child".

 Being in the drama program, Nicki started to grow fond of some of the industry's best such as the one and only Meryl Streep, however she also cites Jada Pinkettsmith as inspiration regarding acting and has claimed Jayz, Foxy Brown, Lil Wayne, Madonna, Beyonce, Kanye and many other artists inspiring her musically.

Now as we know, the entertainment business is a tough industry to break into, it usually leads to people work in various different jobs and Nicki was no exception. It seems she actually had a total of about fifteen jobs before she decided she was destined to entertain.

 Nicki once explained to billboard back in 2010 that the the last job she had was an office manager in a little tiny room where she literally wanted to strangle this guy because he was so loud and obnoxious.

 "I would go home with stress pains in my neck and my back, that's when I went to my mother and said look I'm not going back to work, I've been fired like fifteen times because I had a horrible attitude apparently. There was even once an incident where Nicki chased a customer while working at Red Lobster for stealing her pen. Nicki knew the nine to five life wasn't for her. 

For a short period of time she would sign with the Brooklyn group full force leading her to be a part of the quartet group known as the hood start. The group was made up of a naja star up and a guy named SCAF BZ whose real name is Safari Samuels. From this point on, Nicki was  committed to her craft but wasn't going to let anyone take away from her artistic integrity.

 After leaving the group she would start uploading her work to MySpace. Around this time she'd also start taking Samuels who as we all know she would be on and off with him until about 2014. The relationship was quite interesting with him eventually turning into more of a hype man for Nikki than anything.

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 The team would push for Nicki success as she would continue uploading to MySpace while sharing the links with anyone who was willing to listen. Fortunately for her, CEO of dirty money Fendi caught wind of Nicki's sound and saw a real opportunity. This wasn't by chance as Nicki explained that  she was coaxed into starting a myspace page and began sending out friend requests to some insiders in the music biz.


Fendi happened to be a person she sent a request to. He hit her up and began relentlessly pursuing her. He asked for a trial period to prove himself, the rest is history.

 However, he requested she make one change going from Nicki Maraj to Minaj. According to her,  "my real name is Maraj then he flipped it when he met me because I had such a nasty flow". She signed a 180 day contract with dirty money in 2007. Her first mixtape dropped in June of that year titled "playtime is over" . Shortly after, she gets the attention of one of the best MCS in the rap game on the heels of breaking through to the big times, Nicki dropped "Sucker Free"  in 2008, the same year she would be named female artist of the year at the  2008 underground Music Awards. 

 In 2009, she dropped "Beam me up Scotty" , collaborating with Lil Wayne and in August of that year Nikki would officially sign to Lil Wayne's Young Money label becoming its first ever female artist. Jumping on tracks such as "Bedrock"  which also features a very young Drake and Tyga and a remix of 5-star by Yo Gotti.

It wouldn't be long until the mainstream really started vibing with Nicki sound. In april of 2010, she released her for a single "massive attack" which was supposed to be the lead single for her debut album "pink friday".  However, after it received a fairly poor reception Nicki and her team decided to drop "your love" which peaked at 14 on the Billboard Hot 100 and number one on the Billboard Rap Songs chart.

Nicki would release a few more singles before dropping her debut album. "Pink Friday"  would officially drop on November 22nd 2010 debuting at number 2 on the Billboard Hot 200 and receiving generally positive feedback.

As we know, Nicki would go on to win numerous awards, get herself into a handful of feuds, drop an insane amount of music and showcase to the world her many different characters from Roman to Barbie, chun-li and all those in between.

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 It'll be interesting to see what else Nicki comes up with down the road, it is also noteworthy to state that she got married to her childhood friend Kenneth xue petty and has a baby boy.