While 2015 may have been the year of Nicki Minaj, the superstar is showing no signs of slowing down her rap and mogul reign. In the midst of a whirlwind tour and starring role on Barbershop 3, the Young Money queen has earned a spot on TIME’s “100 Most Influential People” list. The newly minted “icon” also serves up cover slay with rooted blonde tresses in a muted black and white image.
To solidify the honor, Lil Wayne penned a write-up sharing his first impressions of the dominating emcee: She’s not just the best female rapper, she’s “better than other rappers–period.”
“She’s reached far beyond everything I would have imagined,” said Lil Wayne. “Man, she’s so influential and doing all the right things. She’s an icon, a boss and a role model to all these young girls out here on how to do it the right way. Her work ethic speaks volumes and has yielded these results. The scary thing is she’s still going. Ha! Nicki Minaj will go down as one of the best to do it in the history of music.”
Minaj also sat down for a video interview with TIME where she talks about women empowerment and having a voice. She shared her need to write her own raps. goals of being a mogul and encouraged women to celebrate their greatness and know their worth. She also shared her thoughts on cultural appropriation and breaking the ever present glass ceiling.
“Black women are held to higher standards,” said Minaj. “A lot of pop culture takes from black culture and oftentimes doesn’t really say they got it form black culture. magazine are acting like it’s just being done for the first time because it’s on a white woman’s head or it’s on a white woman’s body. You have to get used to living in a world that doesn’t even acknowledge that you did certain things.”