Released on December 12, 2014, The Pinkprint is Nicki Minaj’s third studio album. On this project, Nicki returns back to her Hip-hop roots, dropping the pop and dance-centric sounds that defined her on her previous studio album, 2012’s Pink Friday: Roman Reloaded.
The name of the album is a direct reference to Jay-Z’s The Blueprint, an album that changed the Hip-hop world, designing a “blueprint” for other rappers to imitate and follow. Nicki hoped for The Pinkprint to do the same. Jay-Z is also one of Nicki’s biggest influences, and she told Power 106:
I think everybody knows how obsessed I am with Jay Z. He’s always been my favorite rapper, him and Wayne. He did such a great job of creating this Blueprint brand for male rappers and I wanted to do that [for] female rappers to be able to pattern themselves with what I’ve done one day.
She also told Complex:
I made reference to The Blueprint because Jay is the biggest rapper of our time. The name of the album was inspired by Jay but not the body of work. I do think that it’s going to create new rules, though, in [a way] that [The Blueprint did].
Minaj has concluded, in an interview with V Magazine another big influence for the album was Enya.
Before the album’s release, Nicki released three buzz singles, “Lookin Ass” on February 12, “Chiraq” on April 7, and “Yasss Bish” on May 3, to help tease her fans what The Pinkprint would sound like. However, none of the three songs made the final track listing.
In 2015, The Pinkprint ranked as the seventh most popular album of the year, according to the Billboard 200.