The queen was recognized last night (Aug. 28) as the 2022 recipient of MTV’s Video Vanguard Award recipient presented by some of her most dedicated fans, the barbz.
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Nicki Minaj accepted her award and shouted out people throughout her speech and gave some positive messages following her greatest hit performance. First off, the rapper paid homage to those in the industry who she felt inspired her flow like Jay-Z, Foxy Brown, Dougie Fresh, and more. Of course, along with those who inspired Minaj, she gave credit to Lil Wayne, Beyonce, Rihanna, Mariah Carey, Kanye West and others who she says gave her life-changing opportunities.
Drake received a special shoutout from the Vanguard Award recipient thanking her labelmate for “saying the things that she needed to hear” to get back into the game. Amongst those shoutouts, Nicki Minaj mentioned the legacy of Whitney Houston and Michael Jackson while bringing up the importance of mental health in her acceptance speech.
“I wish Whitney Houston and Michael Jackson were here,” she said. “I wish people understood what they meant and were going through. I wish people took mental health seriously.” Minaj also gave some love to those who’ve passed away liike Pop Smoke, Nipsey Hussle, and Juice WRLD plus some of her personal losses including her dad, cousin, and business manager.
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Nicki Minaj is the first to receive the VMA Video Vanguard award since Missy Elliott in 2019. To see Nicki’s full speech, check out the video below.
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