Hello? Barbz? Kenz? Are you out there? If you are out there, where are you when your beloved Nicki Minaj releases an album?
Superstar Nicki Minaj released her highly-anticipated album, The Pinkprint, on December 12th. According to Nielsen Soundscan, the album is projected to sell a little more than 150,000 in its first week. 150,000 albums sold in a week is not a flop, especially not in today’s music climate. But 150,000 copies sold when your name is Nicki Minaj is very disappointing.
I don’t know what else Nicki could have done to satisfy her audience. She put together a solid album with four hit songs. Nicki’s “Only,” featuring Drake, Lil Wayne, and Chris Brown, hit Number 1 on the Billboard Hot R&B/Hip Hop Songs Charts. “Only” was Nicki’s fourth Number 1 hit; she now leads all female rappers with the most No.1 songs.
The leading song from the album, “Pills N Potions,” peaked at Number 24 on the Billboard Hot 100 Charts. The music video for “Anaconda” was arguably the most talked about video this year, and the song landed at Number 2 on the Billboard Hot 100. “Bed of Lies” featuring Skylar Grey also charted on the Billboard Hot 100.
It isn’t logical for an artist to have hit records, a huge marketing campaign, a devoted fan base, and only sell 150,000 albums. Nicki Minaj did a ton of promotional appearances for The Pinkprint album. She hosted the 2014 MTV Europe Music Awards, made appearances on Saturday Night Live, The Today Show, The Ellen DeGeneres Show, The Tonight Show, and I’m haven’t even mentioned the radio appearances.
I honestly hate to blame Nicki’s self-proclaimed Barbz and Kenz, but I’m at a loss for words. For those of you who don’t know, Nicki’s Barbz and Kenz are her most devoted and obsessed fans. Maybe they can explain why The Pinkprint didn’t sell?
It doesn’t make sense, because Nicki Minaj is the biggest and most successful female rapper on the planet, period. I dare anyone to argue that. If Lil Kim’s fans come after me, I am ready.
There is still hope for Nicki’s album. I understand an artist’s first-week sales are based on a ‘make it or break it’ system, but we live in a digital age now. Before digital sales, the record label would not produce or ship any more albums if an artist flopped in the first week. Thankfully, the digital music market changed the physical copy method, and so consumers can purchase an album whenever they feel like it.
Nicki’s short film, The Pinkprint Movie, may boost her album sales. The short film was supposedly inspired by her recent breakup with longtime boyfriend Safaree Samuels. There’s nothing like a celebrity breakup and a little bit of controversy to somehow work in Nicki’s favor.
Who knows? Maybe all the press about The Pinkprint, rather good or bad, with help too. Stranger things have happened. Cross your fingers.