Nicki Minaj

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Nicki Minaj Opens Up About Her Father's Death And How It Inspired The 'Pink Friday 2' Opening Track

  /  01.05.2024

Last month, Nicki Minaj released her critically acclaimed album, Pink Friday 2. The LP featured a mix of up-tempo anthems like “FTCU” and the Lil Uzi Vert-assisted “Everybody,” as well as more personal cuts.

In an interview with Apple Music’s Ebro Darden on Thursday (Jan. 4) evening, Minaj revealed the emotional inspiration behind “Are You Gone Already.” The song was born from the tragic loss of her dad, Robert Maraj, in a hit-and-run accident in 2021. 

The rapper shared, “My father had just passed. So, right after I had the baby, and it was during Corona, and nobody knew what was going on, so, one day, I was rocking the baby, and I don’t normally have the phone on me when I’m rocking him.” She added that Maraj called her that day, expressing his excitement about coming to California to help her.

That night, Minaj received the devastating news of her father’s accident from her mother, leading her to pass out. “After I had my baby was the first time in my life that I ever fainted; I never knew what it felt like to faint,” she explained. “What was interesting, why I said, ‘Are you gone already?’ [was] because I knew he was gone already.”

In 2022, the driver who killed Maraj was ordered to serve one year in jail. Additionally, his license was suspended for six months on top of being ordered to pay a $5,000 fine.

During her chat with Darden, Minaj also discussed her collaboration with Drake on “Needle.” Originally intended for the Toronto native’s For All The Dogs, it was later included on Pink Friday 2 after he felt it didn’t fit his project’s sound.

Minaj revealed, “He told the fans at his tour that I was going to be on his album. And actually, the song he was talking about was ‘Needle.’”

Press play on “Are You Gone Already” below.


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