Pink Friday

Pink Friday is the debut studio album by Trinidadian-American rapper Nicki Minaj. It was released on November 22, 2010 by Young Money, Cash Money and Universal Motown. After signing a recording contract with Young Money Entertainment in 2009, Minaj began planning the album that same year and work continued into 2010. Minaj enlisted a variety of producers whose efforts resulted in a primarily hip hop and pop music record, which sees additional influences from R&B. The album features guest vocals from Eminem, Rihanna, Drake,, Kanye West and Natasha Bedingfield.

Pink Friday
Pink Friday album cover.jpg
Studio album by
ReleasedNovember 22, 2010
Nicki Minaj chronology
Beam Me Up Scotty
Pink Friday
Pink Friday: Roman Reloaded
Singles from Pink Friday
  1. "Your Love"
    Released: June 1, 2010
  2. "Check It Out"
    Released: September 3, 2010
  3. "Right Thru Me"
    Released: September 24, 2010
  4. "Moment 4 Life"
    Released: December 7, 2010
  5. "Super Bass"
    Released: April 5, 2011
  6. "Did It On'em"
    Released: April 7, 2011
  7. "Girls Fall Like Dominoes"
    Released: April 11, 2011
  8. "Fly"
    Released: August 30, 2011

The album was promoted with eight singles, including the internationally successful single "Super Bass", and US Billboard Hot 100 top 40 singles "Your Love", "Check It Out", "Right Thru Me", "Moment 4 Life", and "Fly". Minaj also supported the album with a five-date promotional concert tour during October 2010.

After a much anticipated release as the result of Minaj's extensive featured appearances on the singles of other artists, Pink Friday debuted at number two on the US Billboard 200, selling 375,000 copies in its first week.[1] It ultimately reached number one on the chart and also charted within the top 20 in Australia, Canada, and the United Kingdom.[2] As of February 2018, the album has sold two million traditional copies in the United States.[3] The album has been certified 3× platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) for combined album sales, track sales, and song streams equivalent of three million album-sale units. Pink Friday was nominated for Best Rap Album at the 54th Grammy Awards in 2012, alongside Minaj's other nominations for Best New Artist and Best Rap Performance for the single "Moment 4 Life".


After a major record label bidding war, Young Money Entertainment announced on August 31, 2009 that Nicki Minaj had been released from a 360 deal with the label in which she retains and owns all of her 360 rights – including merchandising, sponsorships, endorsements, touring and publishing.[4] Sessions for the album began in 2009 with a tentative release set for the second quarter of 2010. Minaj stated in an MTV interview that "Married in the Club" was set to be the lead single from the album and was slated for a November 2009 release.[5] Plans for the single were cancelled and Minaj explained in a February 2010 interview with MTV that she had scrapped the previous material and began recording again from scratch. Minaj explained, "I have songs that where I am now, they aren't a great representation of me to where I'm at musically. I wanna start from scratch but I do have my single and it'll be out."

Nicki Minaj spoke about the great importance of the album to her and all females in hip-hop in an interview with V103's Greg Street, stating; "They won't look to sign other female rappers because they'll say, 'Her buzz was so crazy and if she couldn't do it, then no one can do it.' And I don't want that to happen, so I'm doing this as well for all the girls. I hope that with the success of the album—because I know it will be successful, I believe it will be successful—I hope that this opens doors for all of the girls everywhere. Even as far as I've come right now, it's a testament in my mind," she said. "So I hope the female rappers will understand how big it is, just for our culture, that the album does well."[6]

Recording and productionEdit

Recording sessions for the album took place at several recording locations, including 25 Sound Studios in Detroit, Chalice Recording Studios in Los Angeles, and Glenwood Place Studios in Burbank, California. Hip-hop producer Swizz Beatz confirmed his collaboration with Minaj for the album, with Minaj discussing a song "Catch Me", that she described as "moody" and "mellow futuristic" which later became a bonus track on the album.[7][8] Minaj also confirmed to Entertainment Weekly that The Black Eyed Peas member and record producer contributed production to the album. She stated in the interview that: "The album is much more emotional than you anticipate, which is a great thing. And I know women are gonna connect to the album so much. I felt like for so many years I was the girl who did the catchy little raps, and it's time for me now to tell my story, and in telling my story, I'm really telling every girl's story. We all go through the same thing. So the album is gonna feel very personal to every female."[9] Hip-hop artist and producer Kanye West was also confirmed for the album.[10] Producer Bangladesh also contributed to the album.[11]

In an interview with Interview Minaj stated that she would be toning down her sex appeal for the album, stating: "I made a conscious decision to try to tone down the sexiness, I want people—especially young girls—to know that in life, nothing is going to be based on sex appeal. You've got to have something else to go with that."[12] The song "Right Thru Me", which Minaj described as a "standout" track of the album, was confirmed for the album with Minaj stating, "It's not gonna come right now. It'll come closer to when the album drops, but it's a really, really pretty song. Everyone's gonna like it. It's just really insightful but in a very conversational kind of way."[13] In an interview with 95.8 Capital FM, Barbadian recording artist Rihanna stated that after the two collaborated on "Raining Men" from her album Loud, that they would be teaming up together for a possible second collaboration on Minaj's Pink Friday album.[14] On an unexpected Ustream on October 25, 2010, Minaj discussed a song she had recently recorded with fellow label-mate Drake, which later ended up on the album and became a single.[15] Minaj revealed exclusively to Rap-Up that she collaborated with rapper Eminem on a Swizz Beatz-produced track titled "Roman's Revenge" which references Minaj's alter-ego Roman Zolanski and features Eminem's alter-ego Slim Shady.[16][17]

Music and lyricsEdit

"Your Love" is a mid-tempo hip-hop, pop, and R&B song, with an auto-tuned chorus.[18] It samples the instrumentals and background vocals of Annie Lennox's cover version of "No More I Love You's" by The Lover Speaks, with the addition of additional bass, drum-loops and hip-hop backbeats.[19] "Roman's Revenge" features American rapper Eminem; the song includes both rappers exchanging bars over a "spastic beat" produced by Swizz Beatz.[20] Lyrically, "Roman's Revenge" has been described as "unrelenting",[21] "bonkers",[22] "angry"[23] and "outrageous".[24] "Did It On'em" is a hardcore hip hop and post-dubstep song that has instrumentally been described as having a massive, ungainly beat.[25][26] The lyrics speak of Minaj winning over her competition, by saying she "shitted on 'em" or "pissed on 'em."[27]

"Right Thru Me" is styled with pop-rap tones, and has an electronic beat, while being influenced by R&B.[19][28][29] Lyrically, the song describes someone who wonders aloud about how a lover can see the real her.[19][30] Lyrically, "Moment 4 Life", is about a desire to maintain a feeling of accomplishment, as Drake follows behind Minaj and raps the same theme of enjoying the moment.[31] Straying away from the standard rap song construction of three verses and a hook, Nicki performs a brain-dump of sorts on the track, spitting as if she's making a speech to both her fans and detractors.[32] "Check It Out" features the nearly constant repetition of the piano and vocal hook from The Buggles 1979 classic, "Video Killed the Radio Star", which is famous for being the first video ever played on MTV.[21] "Super Bass" utilizes electronic music and bubblegum pop in its composition, while Minaj raps over a hip hop beat,[33][34][35] Minaj explained the song's concept, stating: "'Super Bass' is about the boy that you are crushing over, [...] And you kind of want to get your mack on, but you're taking the playful approach."[36]


"Massive Attack" was released on April 13, 2010 through digital distribution. The song was a distinct change from Minaj's previous work on mixtapes and features, thus receiving mixed to positive reviews from critics, commending lyrical content and distinctiveness, but critiquing that it did not fit her "Barbie" persona well. The song bubbled under the US Billboard Hot 100 at number 22, and peaked at number 65 on the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart. "Massive Attack" was initially announced as the album's lead single, however, after the single's poor chart performance, Minaj dethroned its lead single status and declared that it would not be featured on the album.[37]

"Your Love" was released as the album's first official US single on June 1, 2010 and as the first single in the United Kingdom on July 2, 2010. Initially, the song had never been planned for release, but due to abounding airplay it was mastered and used as the follow-up to "Massive Attack". The song peaked at number 14 on the Billboard Hot 100, number four on the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart and topped the Hot Rap Songs chart for eight consecutive weeks. Minaj became the first female artist to top the Hot Rap Songs chart unaccompanied since 2002. It also charted in Canada and the UK.[38]

"Check It Out" was released on September 3, 2010.[39] It was a joint single from the album between and Minaj.[40] A music video for the song was directed by Rich Lee and was released on October 25, 2010.[41] The song has since peaked at number 24 on the Billboard Hot 100. "Right Thru Me" was released on September 24, 2010,[42] and officially impacted urban radio on October 5, 2010.[43] A music video directed by Diane Martel was released for the single on October 27, 2010.[44] The song peaked at number 26 on the Billboard Hot 100.

"Moment 4 Life", which features Drake, officially impacted US Rhythmic radio on December 7, 2010,[45] as the album's fourth single. The music video for "Moment 4 Life" was released on January 27, 2011.[46] The song has peaked at number 13 on the Billboard Hot 100 and topped both the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs and Rap Songs charts. "Roman's Revenge" featuring Eminem was released as a promotional single to iTunes on October 30, 2010.[47] A re-worked version of "Roman's Revenge" featuring Lil Wayne was released to the iTunes Store on January 19, 2011.[48]

"Super Bass" was released as the album's fifth single and officially impacted radio on April 5, 2011.[49] It was released to iTunes in some markets on May 13, 2011.[50][51] The song became an international top ten hit. In its seventh week on the Billboard Hot 100, the song had peaked at number 10, making it Minaj's first top ten placement as a lead artist.[52] The song has since climbed and peaked at number 3 on that chart. The song's title is also used as part of the title of a UK deluxe edition of the album, called the "Super Bass edition".[53]

"Did It On'em" was sent to Urban radio on April 7, 2011, as the album's sixth single.[54] The song peaked at number 49 on the Billboard Hot 100 and at numbers 3 and 4 on the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs and Rap Songs charts respectively. "Girls Fall like Dominoes" was released in Australia on April 11, 2011,[55] and in the United Kingdom on April 15, 2011.[56]

"Fly", which features Rihanna, was officially released as the album's eighth and final single. It was sent to US rhythmic radio and to Top 40/Mainstream radio on August 30, 2011.[57][58] The song has since peaked at number 19 on Billboard Hot 100 as well as in the top 20 in Australia and the United Kingdom.

Release and promotionEdit

On July 8, 2010, Minaj announced via Twitter that the album would be released on November 23, 2010.[59] It was later announced that the album was pushed up by one day to November 22, 2010.[60] Minaj's official website and related social networking outlets later announced that the digital download version of the album would be available for pre-order through iTunes on October 30, less than a month before the release date of the physical edition.[61]

On her Twitter, Minaj stated that if she reached one million followers she would dedicate a Ustream to her fans. On August 3, 2010, Minaj went on Ustream to call fans who emailed her their phone numbers and to reveal the album's title.[20] Later that same day, Minaj revealed on Ustream that the album's name would be Pink Friday, stating, "To carry on a great tradition of Black Friday, we are going to switch it up this year in honor of the Nicki Minaj album and call that day Pink Friday, and call my album Pink Friday!"[62] A deluxe edition of the album was also confirmed.[63] Minaj released the official artwork for her album cover on Friday, October 15, 2010.[64] Rap-Up commented on the album cover, stating "The cover features Minaj as a doll alarmingly staring at the camera, sitting armless on the ground with her elongated legs in a flowing silver corset, pink stilettos, and a stark pink wig."[65]

Prior to the release of Pink Friday, MAC Cosmetics announced and launched a lipstick called "Pink 4 Friday" that was sold for four consecutive Fridays beginning November 26, 2010, in promotion of the album.[66] In 2011, OPI Products created a six-piece nail polish collection with Minaj, in which the colors of the collection were named after select songs from the album.[67] In December 2011, Mattel produced a custom-made, Minaj-themed Barbie doll valued at about $15,000 for auction. The doll's design was modeled after Minaj as how she appears on the Pink Friday album cover, with the pink wig and a similar outfit.[68][69]


Pink Friday Promo Tour
Tour by Nicki Minaj
Associated albumPink Friday
Start dateOctober 22, 2010
End dateOctober 30, 2010
No. of shows5
Nicki Minaj concert chronology

Minaj announced via the social networking site Twitter that she would kick off a five-date promotional tour a month before the album dropped.[70] Tweeting, "Ok Barbz, here are the 1st 5 dates on my Pink Friday Tour," the tour began in Philadelphia on October 22, and ran through October 30 in Trinidad and Tobago.[70][71]

Date City Country Venue
North America
October 22, 2010 Philadelphia United States Wells Fargo Center
October 23, 2010 Washington, DC Star Night Club
October 24, 2010 Waterbury Sin City
October 25, 2010 Boston TD Garden
October 30, 2010 Port of Spain Trinidad and Tobago Hasely Crawford Stadium

Critical receptionEdit

Professional ratings
Aggregate scores
Review scores
AllMusic     [74]
Entertainment WeeklyB+[27]
The Guardian     [75]
The Independent     [76]
MSN Music (Expert Witness)A[77]
NME     [25]
Rolling Stone     [79]
USA Today    [81]

Pink Friday was met with mostly positive critical reviews. At Metacritic, which assigns a normalized rating out of 100 to reviews from mainstream publications, the album received an average score of 68, based on 26 reviews.[73]

Reviewing the album for The Boston Globe, James Reed called it "a brash pop album brimming with Minaj's various personae and Technicolor rhymes".[82] Entertainment Weekly's Brad Wete applauded Minaj's "knack for melody" and "boasting lyrics",[83] while Sam Wolfson of NME noted Minaj's "pop sensibility", "volatility and quirks ... reminiscent of heyday Lil Wayne".[84] Los Angeles Times writer Margaret Wappler commented that the album "shows Minaj is on the cusp",[85] while Ann Powers noted Minaj's attempt to showcase her multi-faceted range and complimented her female perspective.[86] Marc Hogan of Spin said it succeeded more as "a budding artist's love letter to pop – well-wrought and exuberantly penned",[80] while Pitchfork critic Scott Plagenhoef believed "even when she's aiming down the middle of the road, she's at least better than almost anyone else", while citing the hip-hop bonus tracks "Blow Ya Mind" and "Muny" as among the album's best.[78] AllMusic's David Jeffries wrote that the album "both dazzles and disappoints", stating "Feed off the production, the great musical ideas, and Minaj's keen sense of her surroundings, and Pink Friday is an outstanding success".[74] Allison Stewart of The Washington Post wrote that the album "nibbles at the edges of what female rappers are allowed to do, even as it provides a steady helping of pop hits".[87] Robert Christgau from MSN Music called Minaj "the quick-lipped hoyden of the year" who is "proud to be shameless, with the hooks to back it up",[77] and later named Pink Friday the 12th best album of 2010.[88]

Some reviewers were more critical. Andy Gill of The Independent felt that "Right Thru Me" is the only track that exhibits "adequate use of [Minaj's] R&B vocal skills" among an album of unoriginal "rap braggadocio".[76] Slant Magazine's Jesse Cataldo praised Minaj's versatility on tracks like "Roman's Revenge", but was disappointed with the collaborative "Moment 4 Life", noting she could have shown more confidence by acting as a foil for Drake, but didn't.[89] In The Observer, Kitty Empire called the album a "triumph of prevarication", but observed a stylistic identity crisis, with a satisfactory but characterless portion of pop music.[90] Rich Juzwiak of The Village Voice criticized the album's "R&B crossover" material and found it lyrically "underwhelming".[91] Alexis Petridis of The Guardian commented that "for every burst of originality, there's a burst of generic frosty synth and Auto-Tune", noting that "the pop- and R&B-influenced tracks simply aren't as exciting, lyrically or musically, as the foam-mouthed hardcore ones".[75]


Critics' year-end lists
Publication List Rank Ref.
The Guardian The 40 Best Albums of 2010
Complex The 25 Best Albums of 2010
Industry awards
Year Ceremony Category Result Ref.
2011 American Music Awards Favorite Rap/Hip-Hop Album Won [94]
BET Hip Hop Awards CD of the Year Nominated [95]
Billboard Music Awards Top Rap Album Nominated [96]
2012 54th Annual Grammy Awards Best Rap Album Nominated [97]

Commercial performanceEdit

Pink Friday debuted at number two on the US Billboard 200 chart, selling 375,000 copies in its first week. This marked the second-highest sales week for a female hip hop recording artist, behind Lauryn Hill's The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill in 1998.[1] On December 17, 2010, the album was certified platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA).[98] In its eleventh week on the chart, the album sold 45,000 copies and topped the Billboard 200.[99] The album also held the record for the most weeks in the top ten on the Billboard 200 chart by a female rap album, having spent fourteen consecutive weeks in the top ten since its release.[100] On March 22, 2016, the album was certified triple platinum by the RIAA for combined album sales, track sales, on-demand audio, and video streams equivalent of three million album-sale units.[98] As of February 2018, the album has sold two million traditional copies in the United States.[3]

Internationally, Pink Friday peaked at number eight in Canada, and within the top twenty in Australia, Ireland and the United Kingdom.[101][102][103][104] In the United Kingdom, it has sold 282,000 copies, as of April 2012.[105]

Track listingEdit

Credits adapted from the liner notes of Pink Friday.[106]

Pink Friday – Standard version
1."I'm the Best"Kane Beatz3:37
2."Roman's Revenge" (featuring Eminem)Swizz Beatz4:38
3."Did It On'em"
  • Maraj
  • Shondrae Crawford
  • J. Ellington
  • S. Samuels
4."Right Thru Me"
  • Maraj
  • Andrew Thielk
  • Stephen Hacker
  • J. Satriani
Drew Money3:56
5."Fly" (featuring Rihanna)
6."Save Me"3:05
7."Moment 4 Life" (featuring Drake)T-Minus4:39
8."Check It Out" (with
9."Blazin'" (featuring Kanye West)
Drew Money5:02
10."Here I Am"
  • Maraj
  • Dean
  • J. Williams
  • Robbie Bronnimann
  • Swizz Beatz
  • John B
11."Dear Old Nicki"
  • Maraj
  • Johnson
Kane Beatz3:53
12."Your Love"
  • Pop Wansel
  • Oak Felder
13."Last Chance" (featuring Natasha Bedingfield)
  • Maraj
  • Natasha Bedingfield
  • Thielk
Drew Money3:51
Total length:50:46
Pink Friday – UK Super Bass edition (bonus tracks)[53]
14."Girls Fall Like Dominoes"
  • Maraj
  • Rotem
  • Cordell
  • Furze
J.R. Rotem3:44
15."Super Bass"
  • Maraj
  • Johnson
  • Dean
Kane Beatz3:20

Pink Friday – Deluxe edition[107]
14."Super Bass"
Kane Beatz3:20
15."Blow Ya Mind"
  • Maraj
  • Wansel
  • Felder
  • Pop Wansel
  • Oak Felder
Pink Friday – Digital deluxe edition (bonus tracks)[110]
17."Girls Fall Like Dominoes"
  • Maraj
  • Rotem
  • Robbie Furze
  • Millo Cordell
  • Cleveland Browne
  • Greville Gordon
  • Wylcliffe Johnson
J.R. Rotem3:44
18."Roman's Revenge" (featuring Lil Wayne)
  • Maraj
  • Carter, Jr.
  • Dean
  • Smith
Swizz Beatz3:50
Total length:69:00

Pink Friday – Best Buy deluxe edition (bonus tracks)[111]
17."Wave Ya Hand"
  • Maraj
  • Dean
Swizz Beatz3:00
18."Catch Me"
  • Maraj
  • Dean
Swizz Beatz3:56

Pink Friday – Japanese and New Zealand deluxe edition (bonus tracks)[112][113]
19."Girls Fall Like Dominoes"
  • Maraj
  • Rotem
  • Cordell
  • Furze
J.R. Rotem3:44
20."BedRock" (performed by Young Money featuring Lloyd)
Kane Beatz4:48

Pink Friday – Complete edition (2020 reissue)[114]
21."Roman's Revenge" (featuring Lil Wayne)
  • Maraj
  • Carter, Jr.
  • Dean
  • Smith
Swizz Beatz3:50
Total length:81:00
Sample credits


Credits adapted from Allmusic.[115]

  • Chris Bellman – mastering
  • Joshua Berkman – A&R
  • Sandy Brummels – art direction
  • Noel Cadastre – assistant
  • Dwayne "Tha President" Carter – executive producer
  • Lyttleton "Cartwheel" Carter – assistant
  • Ariel Chobaz – engineer, mixing
  • Seandrae "Mr. Bangladesh" Crawford – producer
  • James Cruz – A&R, management
  • Sean Combs – management
  • DJ Ammo – synthesizer
  • Dylan Dresdow – mixing
  • Chris Gehringer – mastering
  • Kevin Hissink – electric guitar
  • John B. – keyboards, producer, programming
  • Padraic Kerin – engineer
  • Kidus Henok – A&R
  • Kenny Meiselas – legal counsel
  • Drew Money – producer
  • Charles Moniz – engineer
  • J.R. Rotem – arranger, mixing
  • Safaree "SB" Samuels – A&R, vocals
  • Ed Shapiro – legal counsel
  • Noah "40" Shebib – engineer
  • Olivia Smith – package design
  • Shaz Sparks – vocals
  • Swizz Beatz – producer
  • T-Minus – producer
  • Pop Wansel – producer
  • – drum programming, engineer, producer, synthesizer
  • Bryan Williams – executive producer
  • Ronald Williams – executive producer
  • G.L. Wood – photography



Region Certification Certified units/sales
Australia (ARIA)[131] Platinum 70,000^
United Kingdom (BPI)[132] Platinum 282,000[105]
United States (RIAA)[133] 3× Platinum 3,000,000^

^shipments figures based on certification alone

See alsoEdit


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  30. ^ Nicki Minaj, “Right Through Me” MP3 « The FADER
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