Grammy-winning rapper Lil Wayne and Young Money sidekick Nicki Minaj‘s hard work throughout 2011 paid off as both artists have been named in Billboard’s Top Hip-Hop Artists of the Year list.
The duo’s grind throughout the year made them also top singers for the top R&B/Hip-Hop spot.
You can call Lil Wayne and Nicki Minaj label mates, mentor and protégée, or employer and employee. Or you can call them the top two R&B/Hip-Hop Artists of 2011. Lil Wayne claims the No. 1 spot on the Artist ranking thanks to his No. 1 R&B/Hip-Hop Album of the Year, “Tha Carter IV,” along with four No. 1s and 24 chart entries on Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs during 2011. The Barbie Doll finishes a close second to Wayne among Top Artists as the breakthrough success of her debut set “Pink Friday,” a six-week No. 1 on Top R&B Albums, and six top 10s on Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs, including the No. 1 “Moment 4 Life,” featuring Drake, raised her profile to the superstar level this year. She also finished second to Lil Wayne on the R&B/Hip-Hop Albums list as “Pink Friday” takes the No. 2 spot behind “Tha Carter IV.” (Billboard)
Nicki topped her boss by getting named the hottest individual rap artist as well.
Nicki Minaj came second on the poll, largely due to the success of her debut ‘Pink Friday’, which spent six weeks at the top of the charts and produced a further six Top 10 singles. Minaj was also named the Top Rap artist by Billboard, beating Lil Wayne, Drake and Kanye West. Chris Brown, Miguel and Wiz Khalifa also featured highly in the end-of-year list. (NME)
Billboard also honored music stars Kelly Rowland and Wiz Khalifa.
Other artists who got mention for their accolades in 2011 include Kelly Rowland with her first #1 hit on the Hot R&B/Hip Hop Songs chart in four years, with “Motivation.” Also, Wiz Khalifa was able to grab the distinction of “New R&B/Hip-Hop Artist of the Year.” He may want to thank the Pittsburgh Steelers for embracing “Black and Yellow,” a catchy theme song they rode into last year’s Superbowl. Wiz is certainly among the rookies of the year for 2011, although fans may contend there are other new hip-hop artists who could stake a claim. (Gather)
Despite a platinum-selling debut album, Wayne recently said he felt Minaj could become an even bigger star.
“I’m not satisfied with anything she’s done,” he said in an interview. “I believe she can do a whole lot more, and I believe she will do a whole lot more. It’s not shocking, and it’s not surprising. It’s quite fitting. But other than that, it’s nowhere near the end.” (VIBE)
Check out Nicki Minaj impersonating Lil Wayne below: