Nicki Minaj Reveals Kanye West Turned Down Her Female Yeezy Collab Idea Out of Respect for Kim Kardashian
She sat down with Joe Budden for an interview titled A Conversation With Nicki Minaj & Joe Budden, which premiered on the rapper-turned-podcaster's YouTube page on Wednesday (March 9). Nicki revealed that after obtaining a deal with designer fashion brand Fendi, following her name-drop of the brand on 2018 her track "Chun-Li," she reached out to Ye to speak to him about the idea for a joint brand venture. However, the Queens, N.Y. rhymer was denied out of respect for his then-wife Kim Kardashian.
The Queen MC explained, "I told Kanye about [my impact on Fendi’s sales]. I was like, ‘Hey, look, I’m about to do something and I just wanted to make sure I spoke to you first,’ ’cause I have so much respect for him. And he was like, ‘Well, if I did something with you, I think my wife probably wouldn’t love that idea because I should be giving that to my wife instead. If I was doing a female version of the Yeezys or whatever, it should probably go to my wife.'"
Nicki went on to clarify that this conversation took place long before Kanye and Kim's tumultuous divorce. And while she understood his stance, she also felt that the opportunity to offer another influential Black celebrity a chance to thrive in the fashion space—one that Ye has complained about himself—should've been offered to her.
"Kanye was very vocal about the fashion industry not letting him in at one time," she continued. "So, if a Black female rapper who you know has just shown herself to be sellable…then when I come to you as a Black man that I look up to, I’m doing that because you inspired me, because you said if the fashion industry didn’t want to let us in, even though we’re so influential."
Nicki added, "And then when I did ask, just put it on his radar, he said how he thought his wife would feel about it, and we didn’t really speak much more about it. Now, I’m not saying that [Kim Kardashian] said that, but that’s what he thought how she would feel about it. We have to be careful that when we put those things out there and when a door is opened, that we do figure out a way to have another Black face there in that space."
Within that same nearly two-hour long conversation, Nicki Minaj addressed a multitude of topics, and also gave Lil' Kim her flowers. Nicki siad that they both should be able to grace the cover of American Vogue as they've had a major impact on women in rap culture.
Check out the interview with Nicki and Joe Budden below. The portion on Kanye rejecting her idea for a Yeezy collaboration begins around the 50:00-mark.