In his first interview regarding Nicki Minaj’s controversial missed set at Hot 97’s Summer Jam earlier this month, Lil Wayne told MTV that his executive decision to pull Minaj from the concert came down to a matter of respect.
“As soon as she called me and told me she felt disrespected, I just declined everything,” Wayne said. “I pulled her from the show because . . . no person that works with me will be disrespected in my presence as long as I’m on this planet.”
Minaj was set to close the show and was planning to bring out Nas, Foxy Brown, Cam’ron and Weezy as special guests. Wayne, however, pulled the plug after Hot 97 DJ Peter Rosenberg criticized Minaj and her recent smash, “Starships,” earlier in the day, saying, “We’re all about that real hip-hop, not ‘Starships.'”
“That’s a female. First and foremost, Nicki Minaj is a female. I don’t know what anyone else believes, but I believe females deserve the ultimate respect at all times, no matter when or where or how,” Wayne told MTV.
While Wayne stands by his decision, it was a move that sparked a firestorm of debate about “real hip-hop,” one that lead to an hourlong chat between Minaj and Hot 97 DJ Funkmaster Flex that was supposed to clear the air.
“When you want our team to come to your show, treat us with respect,” said Minaj during the chat, in which she also apologized to her fans and promised to make up the missed date with a free show in New York sometime this summer. While Flex didn’t quite apologize for his co-worker, he did say that “Rosenberg didn’t pick the right time and place to say that.”
Lauryn Hill, who ended up filling in for Minaj at Summer Jam alongside Nas, also threw her support behind Minaj, posting on Twitter: “I don’t have details on exactly what transpired between the station and the artists, but I do support artists standing by their beliefs, and walking with integrity.”
In his talk with MTV, Wayne seemed ready to let the kerfuffle fade. “I expect the red carpet, in her manner – the pink carpet should be laid out for her,” he said. “It’s just an executive move – no salt, no bad feelings, no hard feelings.”