After reaching No.2 in America with new album Queen, Nicki Minaj has aired her feelings on her chart race with Travis Scott on Twitter, hinting at preferential treatment from Spotify.
Minaj shifted 185,000 copies of Queen, according to Billboard Chart figures, with 78,000 from traditional sales. In the same week, Scott’s Astroworld moved 205,000, with 78,000 from traditional sales.
Minaj took to social media to criticise Scott for selling ‘season pass’ bundles for a forthcoming tour. The rapper wrote: “Travis sold over 50K of these. With no requirement of redeeming the album! With no dates for a tour, etc. I spoke to him. He knows he doesn’t have the #1 album this week.”
Minaj announced her album via Queen Radio, her show in Apple’s Beats 1 network and, in another tweet, suggested that Spotify withdrew planned support for Queen in light of that broadcast.
“Spotify had to teach me a lesson,” she posted, before hinting that Drake received heavy Spotify promotion for his chart-topping Scorpion debut in spite of his long association with Apple.
Spotify put drake’s face on every playlist but told me they’d have to teach me a lesson for playing my music 10 mins early on #QueenRadio. Even tho they’ve been giving away my music for free for years & I am one of the top Spotify artists of all time.— QUEEN (@NICKIMINAJ) August 19, 2018
Spotify had to teach me a lesson but rewarded the man who has had an Apple radio show the longest; inadvertently helping the Apple platform the most. Oh I can’t wait for #QueenRadio on Tuesday. They took away my promotion they had promised for the 1st cpl days b/c of this. #Queen— QUEEN (@NICKIMINAJ) August 19, 2018
Travis sold over 50K of these. With no requirement of redeeming the album! With no dates for a tour, etc. I spoke to him. He knows he doesn’t have the #1 album this week. I love my fans for the #1 album in AMERICA! I’ll explain on #QueenRadio 4 albums in, #1 in 86 countries ♥? pic.twitter.com/CiYEuczgm3— QUEEN (@NICKIMINAJ) August 19, 2018
She added that her record label, Cash Money/Republic Records, “didn’t want to defend me for fear of Spotify trying to teach Ariana a ‘lesson’ too.”
Ariana Grande released Sweetener on Friday (August 17), a week after Minaj’s Queen. Both artists feature on each other’s albums.
Minaj also suggested Billboard may "change the rules" in light of Scott's bundle sales.
Spotify, Cash Money/Republic and Scott’s representatives are yet to comment on the matter.
In the UK, Minaj charted at No.5, with 10,286 sales, according to the Official Charts Company. The total figure comprised 2,910 permanent downloads and 7,376 sales equivalent streams. Elsewhere, Queen hit No.8 in the Netherlands, New Zealand and Wallonia, No.9 in Norway, No.11 in Flanders, No.15 in Sweden and No.18 in Germany.
Meanwhile, Scott dropped to No.6 in the latest OCC rankings thanks to 7,878 sales. Astroworld reached No.3 in the previous frame. The album is the second biggest-selling of 2018 so far in the US, behind Drake’s Scorpion, which smashed records upon release last month.
Nicki Minaj's biggest-selling UK album is 2010's Pink Friday (388,734 sales), while 2012's Pink Friday (Roman Reloaded) peaked at No.1 and has sold 329,860 copies to date.