Nicki Minaj has been making her way back into the spotlight. After releasing two solid singles that quickly jumped up the charts and announcing her headlining night at Essence Fest, the Queen of rap seems poised to reign over her kingdom once again.

In the time since she first burst onto the scene, a slew of female rappers have risen and with them conversations about where she stands on the list of all-time greats. Minaj has never shied away from wanting her flowers not only for lyrical prowess but also for her trendsetting fashion and hairstyles. In her latest role as mom to her 1-year-old, affectionately known as ‘Papa Bear’, the “Do We Have A Problem” rapper is trying to be the best in show. She hasn’t done a lot of press over the last few years, opting to speak directly to her fans through a few Instagram lives instead but she recently came outside to go for a ride with late-night host James Corden for his Emmy-award winning segment, “Carpool Karaoke.

Her 17-minute session with the “Late Late Show” host kicked off with the pair collaborating on Nicki’s huge hit, “Anaconda” for which Minaj had a few jokes at her own expense. “You see how meaningful the words are,” she said after the song before jumping into her beloved British accent much to the delight of Corden. The host wanted Nicki to do her best Adele impression and the rapper humbly obliged before diving into an acapella version of the singer’s hit “Someone Like You”.

Engaging in fun banter with Corden about everything from what an “opp” is to whether or not she makes up lullabies for her son, Nicki was in a light and playful mood—the one everyone grew to love her for. She also took the time to speak about her own state of mind and struggles with anxiety. 

“I think when I was younger, my more natural state was to be more confident. But when you’re a woman and you’re in the public eye all the time ,if you’re not careful, you can become less confident because you’re being constantly scrutinized,” she said. “I just don’t think it’s natural. It’s not natural for human beings to always feel like everyone’s critiquing them.”

Coming into fame at the very start of social media and journeying through the affects of having so little privacy, Minaj has had to stand tall against a constant onslaught of criticism. “When I first came into the industry, I had this amazing sense of freedom,” said Minaj, “because nobody gave a shit about what I was doing. I could get away with doing anything. And then it goes from that to the complete, complete opposite. Where it’s like, if I blink my eye wrong, they’ll have a story made up about why I blinked my eye that way.” While she is one of the most famous entertainers to ever live, it is her son’s love that keeps her grounded. “He makes me laugh, makes me smile, makes me happy. He’s just so cute and cuddly.”

We love to see Nicki Minaj taking her rightful place at the head of the table of female hip hop.

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