Nicki Minaj’s “Super Freaky Girl” Kicked Out of Grammy Rap Category

Nicki Minaj’s “Super Freaky Girl” Kicked Out of Grammy Rap Category

Nicki Minaj’s “Super Freaky Girl” is at the top of Billboard’s Hot Rap Songs chart for the eighth week in a row, but at the Grammys, the song will compete in the pop category.

Minaj sent the song, which debuted at No. 1 on Billboard’s Hot 100 chart in August, to the rap categories at the Grammys, but the Recording Academy’s rap committee changed their minds, a source said. This group decided that Minaj’s fun, pop-sounding song that sampled Rick James’ 1981 hit “Super Freak” should not be in the running for rap awards, but for best pop solo performance.

Minaj said she didn’t agree with the decision in an Instagram video post and a series of tweets on Thursday. Minaj said about the academy on IG that they keep moving the goalposts when it comes to her. “Why does the goalpost only move when Nicki is involved?”

Nicki Minaj’s “Super Freaky Girl” Kicked Out of Grammy Rap Category
Nicki Minaj’s “Super Freaky Girl” Kicked Out of Grammy Rap Category

Minaj also said that if “Super Freaky Girl” has to compete in pop, so should Latto’s “Big Energy,” which leans toward pop and samples Tom Tom Club’s 1981 song “Genius of Love,” which was famously sampled by Mariah Carey for her No. 1 hit “Fantasy.”

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“I don’t mind being moved out of the RAP category as long as we are ALL treated EQUALLY,” she wrote on Twitter. “If Super Freaky Girl has to be moved out of RAP, then Big Energy has to be moved out, too! Whoever says otherwise is just a Nicki hater or a troll.”

“Big Energy” by Latto was No. 1 on Billboard’s rap chart for two weeks and reached No. 3 on the Hot 100 all-genre chart. “Big Energy” will be up for rap Grammys, not pop Grammys, at the Grammys.

When I sent an email to The Recording Academy, a representative did not answer.

The Grammy nominees for 2023 will be announced on November 15, and the live show will air on CBS on February 5, 2023.

The first round of voting starts on Thursday and goes through October 23. Minaj has rapped or sung on a number of pop and hip-hop hits over the years, and sometimes she does both on the same track. Her first solo single, “Your Love,” was close to pop because it used a sample of Annie Lennox’s 1995 cover of “No More I Love You’s.” Minaj has also released pop-heavy songs like “Super Bass” and “Starships,” which Hot 97 radio host Peter Rosenberg famously called “not real hip-hop,” which made Minaj pull out of the station’s annual Summer Jam concert.

Minaj has been nominated for 10 Grammys, but she has only ever been up for a pop award once, for “Bang Bang” with Ariana Grande and Jessie J. Most of her Grammy nominations have been for rap, such as best rap album for Pink Friday and The Pinkprint, best rap song for “Anaconda,” and best rap performance for “Moment 4 Life” and “Truffle Butter.”

“Super Freaky Girl” is in the same league as “Truth Hurts” by Lizzo: The singer-first rapper’s big hit was a song that was number one on Billboard’s rap chart for 13 weeks and then number one on the Hot 100 chart for seven weeks. However, it didn’t compete in the rap categories at the Grammys. Instead, it was up for a best pop solo performance at the 2020 show, which it won.

Doja Cat’s “Say So,” in which she sings and raps, and Post Malone’s “Better Now,” which mixes hip-hop, alternative, and pop sounds, are two other songs with rap parts that have competed for best pop solo performance.

Iggy Azalea and Charli XCX’s “Fancy,” Wiz Khalifa and Charlie Puth’s “See You Again,” and Lil Nas X and Billy Ray Cyrus’ “Old Town Road,” which won the award in 2020, are all examples of collaborations that topped Billboard’s rap chart but were up for best pop duo/group performance at the Grammys.

Macklemore and Ryan Lewis were kicked out of the rap Grammys when their songs “Thrift Shop” and “Can’t Hold Us” became big hits at the 2014 show. But later, when the group won all of the rap Grammys and beat Kendrick Lamar and others, the decision was overturned and got a lot of criticism. Even Macklemore didn’t like it. So, Macklemore and Ryan Lewis didn’t enter their second album for consideration at the 2017 Grammys.

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